T.J. Simers of the Los Angeles Times is a level 5 moron. He glosses over 8 years of "Manny being Manny" in Boston and lumps all Boston sports fans into the same category as a couple of idiots who emailed him using vulgar language. The synopsis of Simers article, we're all crazy in Boston.
Simers of course references Jonathan Paplebon's interview with Esquire Magazine last week in which Pap called Manny a cancer. I too wish Pap offered no comment, but he was asked the question and from all accounts, including Peter Gammons, he was right. I know it's not popular to beat a dead horse, but the truth is the truth, and the truth is Manny gave up on the Sox last season.
For me that is water under the bridge, I'll certainly boo him if he makes a return to Fenway, but I sleep fine at night. I have the ability and understanding to respect Manny's numbers and all the great moments he gave us crazy fans in Boston.
I will however also remember him asking for a trade at the end of every season, his deplorable defense, the jogging down to first base, and the many injuries there we were never quit sure were injuries. Long and short of it was he was a cancer.
Funny story about the picture above. Game 2 of the 2007 ALCS, I was killing Manny for all the reasons in the previous paragraph. Enter Manny Ramirez, walk off home run, the entire room is killing me. Naturally I'm thrilled the Sox won, but I did have some egg on my face. I would be lying if I said I didn't feel vindicated in 2008 when Manny was traded then proceeded to light LA on fire.
I know Simers doesn't have the benefit of witnessing "Manny being Manny" for 8 years, so when he was traded to LA last July it was like Jesus was back, and he played left field for the Dodgers.
I'll grant Simers the fact that there are still people killing Manny here in Boston, both fans and columnists/radio personalities. Part of that is an inability to forget and the other part is entertainment.
However painting all of us Boston sports fans with the same brush is an amateur argument I expect to hear at a bar after a few too many drinks. Simers writes like he's had a few too many jack and cokes, somebody get this clown a water and call his ass a cab.
Manny didn't act alone during his exodus from Boston, his agent, Scott Boras, was whispering in his ear the entire time. There are people here who are still upset about the way things ended, but that's what happens when you have fans who care. I have my fair share of gripes with Red Sox Nation (including that) but caring is not one of them. The Red Sox are a cash cow for one reason, the fans.
I understand the atmosphere in Los Angeles laid back and everyone drinks star bucks lattes, and they probably won't even notice when Manny begins his annual song and dance. This is Boston, it snows, it's cold 7 months a year, and we care about our sports, perhaps to the brink of being labeled crazy.
Just for the record, Manny will be out for a week, his hamstrung is acting up again!