Manny's all about the money
July, 28, 2008
Everyone in the clubhouse knows the names. Joba Chamberlain (twice), Felix Hernandez (twice), Edinson Volquez, Justin Verlander -- pitchers that Manny Ramirez didn't feel quite right to face, be it a knee, a hamstring, his contract or the pitcher's velocity, and those he left for someone else in the Red Sox "family" to face. Everyone knows what this latest soap opera is about. It's about Manny being only about Manny -- not the team that will have paid him $168 million when this season's over, not "teammates" he leaves to answer for him, not winning or any competitive motivation. No. Manny being Manny means Manny wanting money. He doesn't want to wait for the Red Sox to exercise the right he gave them for the first $168M, the right to decide at the end of the season whether to pick up his option for 2009 at $20M. The Red Sox fulfilled their end of the contract; now he doesn't want to fulfill his obligation, the same way he watched his teammates fade in 2006.