It amazes me that athletes continue to be coddled in this era of multi-million-dollar athletes
Apparently, there is such a shortage of talent in professional sports these days that organizations are ready, willing, and able to give selfish and spoiled athletes whatever they want beyond their already astronomical salaries.
"Want a new hot tub for your aching back Mr. Jones? You got it!"
"Did they put too much tarter sauce on your fish sandwich Mr. Smith, we'll buy you a new one at our expense!"
"Would you like us to pay for 16 tickets for your friends, even though you make $20 million a year and could easily afford to pay for them yourself? Sure thing Mr. Ramirez!"
Hold on a second, did it actually get leaked to the press that Manny Ramirez, a man who makes $20 million per season, asked Red Sox traveling secretary Jack McCormick to pay for sixteen tickets to Sunday's Red Sox-Astros game?
You bet your buns it did!
What makes this story even more perplexing though is that McCormick was the antidote to team executives who baby their athletes, he simply said so.
Manny, however, is a man who rarely hears the word no. He's used to having things his way because he's Manny Ramirez, one of the most feared power hitters ever to play the game.
Baseball players who have the kinds of skills that Manny has are few and far between, and the Red Sox know this.
A lineup without Manny Ramirez in it is not as fun to watch for the fan, and will probably mean that the team won't be competitive.
In a region like New England, a team that isn't competitive leads to a fan revolt. They simply will not watch or attend the game.
Thus, it's kind of surprising when you hear that a team employee says no to Manny Ramirez.
But that isn't the most surprising part of this incident.
You see, Manny took offense to the fact that McCormick said no to him. He took such offense that he ended up pushing Mc Cormick to the ground.
What this says to me is that Manny Ramirez is an important part of the Red Sox lineup, and the Red Sox know that despite his many personality faults, Manny will be a productive player that will hit home runs and keep the team competitive.
In essence, they can't afford to lose his bat, and frequently make this simple excuse for their hitting superstar when he acts like a less-than-ideal player within the Red Sox organization.
"Oh, that's just Manny being Manny."
They make this silly excuse because they know that an unhappy Manny Ramirez will likely demand a trade if the team buries him in the press.
He is way too valuable to lose, and was too big of an investment to let walk away.
So they always make excuses for him, regardless of the severity of what he's done.
Perhaps I should put into perspective for you the types of thing that Manny has done that has led someone in the Red Sox organization to use the monotonous and overused excuse of Manny being Manny to prove that he's Mr. VIP
- In 2003, Manny refused to play because he had spent the night partying with then Yankees infielder Enrique Wilson
- Also in 2003, Manny refused to run out a ground ball back to the mound in Tampa because he figured he'd be out anyway.
- In 2005 Manny called time to go take a leak inside the Green Monster during a game at Fenway
Does this sound like a coddled, selfish athlete who always gets what he wants?
Saturday's incident with McCormick just proved what self-absorbed, arrogant athlete Manny truly is.
I find no fault with Manny asking for tickets. However, Manny has apparently forgotten that hard-working baseball fans have just as much of a right to go to the game as his friends do. To put aside sixteen tickets for your friends just because you're Manny Ramirez is asking a lot on the part of Jack McCormick.
So, if Manny thought logically, he may have offered to pay for the tickets himself.
Manny, however, is an athlete that probably doesn't hear the word no too often, check that, he never hears the word no.
Because of this, he felt he was within his rights to shove McCormick to the ground because he knew the organization would not discipline him. They would, instead, try to make an excuse for his actions.
Like clockwork, the team came out with a statement yesterday afternoon, which stated Manny was sorry for what happened and that he was spoken to.
To this I must respond to my saying that, given Manny's past actions, I cannot believe how closed-minded the Red Sox are to this situation.
The man pushed a team employee that has the authority to make a decision Manny obviously objected to, and you act like nothing happened.
What is it going to take for the Red Sox organization to realize that this guy is a loaded weapon, capable of doing anything to those who cross him.
You have to look beyond the fact that he an important part of the offense and team.
He obviously knows you'll stick up for him, and that's why he did what he did.
His utter disregard for authority is a disgrace to baseball, and to human nature in general.
His actions make Ozzie Guillen's tirades look like inspiring commencement speeches by comparison.
As a Red Sox fan, I am a proud supporter of Red Sox Nation. Just today, I got an email that urged me to pad Manny's small lead over Josh Hamilton in the All-Star voting.
The team obviously felt that I, as both a fan a member of Red Sox Nation, was obligated as my civic duty to vote for Manny Ramirez.
To them I say this.
I'd rather have my blood sucked out by leeches than see him start in left field on July 15.
I'll gladly vote for Hamilton. He may have had a drug problem, but he took advantage of a second chance, swore off drugs, and is having the season of his life.
He deserves to start in the game. I urge all of you reading this who agree with my opinions, to go to MLB.com and vote for Josh Hamilton.
Wake up John Henry, your superstar is a ticking time bomb.
The preceding article was Danny being Danny.
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