(Boston Globe Staff Photo / Jim Davis)
I’d like to think that if I were one of the greatest right handed hitters of all time that I wouldn’t be as delusional as Manny Ramirez, starting left fielder for the Nowhere Nobodies. Let it be known right now that he will sign with someone before the season starts—perhaps before I finish writing this. Either a team will be suckered into giving him too much money or multiple years or things will lead in the direction more concurrent with the dreadful economy and this little concept called reality.
“Man,” he recently complained to good friend Albert Pujols over lemonade and finger sandwiches, “nobody wants to sign me.” Actually, 29 of the 30 teams in the league would love to sign you, Manny, just not at your ridiculous asking price. I’m sure most people would love to own a $60,000 sports car, but not if they have to pay $150,000 for it and have it refuse to start at any given time.
Given Manny’s behavior over the past year, both on the field and off , you can only imagine just how little he grasps the mechanisms of the current free agent market, especially how it is being affected by the poor economy. Imagine a sit down session between Ramirez and his agent Scott Boras…
Scott Boras: Manny, it looks like we might need to go fewer years, maybe two years for around $50 million.
Manny Ramirez: Listen Steve, I am Manny, you know?
Boras: (after waiting for further elaboration from Manny) Um, well no one is willing to give you more than two years. And everyone seems willing to go into the season with what they’ve got unless we go for less money.
Manny: (fiddling with a Dick Cheney action figure from Boras’ desk) I think 4 years and $100 million.
Boras: Right. Me too, but in this economic climate that is very unlikely to play out. We may need to back off a bit. Take fewer years maybe with an option and with what I taught you we’ll get you out of that option nonsense and into some real money next year.
Manny: Have the Dodgers offered 4 years, $100,000 million recently?
Boras: (shakes head)
Boras: Okay, ah, Manny um, here’s the thing, we…are not getting…
Manny: I’m headed to get some fish tacos, man. Listen, Steve, call me on my cell when I get a deal. Chau, bro.
(7.11.04: Jim Davis / Boston Globe File Photo)
What Manny hears: “Manny, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, Manny. Blah, blah, blah, blah, John McCain, blah, blah, blah, blah, hitting, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, money.”
Yesterday Manny told reporters that he’s confident that he will sign with someone soon and that if he can get another six years in the league that he’ll be able to get 3,000 hits and 700 home runs. Six years? Though not officially stating it, he still very well could be expecting to get four to six years even now when the longest term contract offered to him has been two years, and Scott Boras didn’t even respond to that offer. They are now being offered less years and money than the one to which he didn’t show the good grace to respond .
“The lunatic is on the grass…” Pink Floyd, 1973.
The lunatic is surely on something, and they’re not common sense pills. Manny is seemingly living in a land where he thinks the compensation process invovles magical fairies swooping into his window and emptying large sacks of money onto his floor for him to roll in. He waits up each night, but alas, no fairies.
In the end Manny will be paid, and compensated much better than the average human being. Someone (Yankees?) might even give the man too many years and too much money. I realize that’s not very Yankeeesque but stranger things have happened. Until that happens Manny will wait up at night longing for the money fairies.