Wednesday, July 30, 2008

When the Indians brought up Manny Ramirez in 1993, it was clear he was an interesting guy.

He asked manager Mike Hargrove to scratch him from the lineup once because of a sore throat.

In those early years, when Ramirez would get tagged out after a stolen base because an opposing infielder told him the ball was foul, or when he would stand at home plate for 10 seconds after a ball four, Indians' fans would shrug and figure that the hitting machine probably would grow out of it.

I guessed wrong on Manny. I sort of figured he'd grow up, one day go by "Manuel" and become a spokesman for the game, and at least be more serious.

Suffice to say, I misfired on that one.

Manny still does and says some of the stangest things, for reasons only he knows.

Ramirez doesn't appear to have grown up, even as he's grown old. And finally, after eight seasons and two world titles, Red Sox managment has finally said "enough."

His recent actions and comments come across as a dare to the Red Sox to trade him. As of late Wednesday night, a deal was that would send Ramirez to the Marlins was close.

Yeah, the same Marlins with a $22 million payroll. If it goes through, one imagines Manny's option won't be picked up and he'll be a free agent.

Ramirez is 36. He's still a dangerous hitter, with 20 homers and 68 RBIs. But the guy is on the verge of burning his bridge in Boston. Wherever he goes from here, it's unlikely his behavior will change.

I don't care about this nearly as much as the length of this post might indicate. But it's easier than writing about the Indians 14-12, 13-inning loss to the Tigers.

The Tigers scored two in the 13th, shortly after the Indians squandered a bases-loaded no-out situation in the 12th.

The hits just keep coming for this team.



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