Manny Ramirez pouted his way out of Boston and took the Dodgers to the precipice of the World Series all in one season. Now, at 36, he'll hit the open market looking to cash in for presumably the final time before he gives the greatest Hall of Fame speech ever five years after he retires.
It's hardly a secret that Manny wants to an enormous contract -- in fact many people speculate that it's the reason he was so petulant during his final days with the Red Sox. When there's a megadeal and superagent Scott Boras involved, it's always a good bet that the Yankees will be involved too:
Manny Ramirez doesn't fit the Yankees New York Yankees ' desire to get younger and more athletic, but several industry sources believe the Yankees will make a serious push for the free agent to play right field next year.
Look, the Yankees have a ton of money to spend because of the new stadium they are opening in 2009. Ramirez spent his high school years in the Washington Heights neighborhood of New York City. Both parties would love to stick it to Red Sox if at all possible. And New York is looking to improve on both sides of the ball. So viewed through all those prisms, Ramirez to the Bronx makes sense. But in every other way, he doesn't.
As the New York Post writers point out, the Yankees are trying to get younger. Ramirez doesn't help them accomplish that goal. They also have the designated hitter and left field roles filled by Hideki Matsui and Johnny Damon, respectively, so he doesn't fit there either.
Right field? Now that's rich. Ramirez has been one of the worst defensive left fielders in baseball for years, and we're supposed to believe he can man a tougher position on the defensive spectrum for a team that was one of the worst in baseball defensively this year and where anything but a World Series title in 2009 will be considered a failure?
The only people who benefit from these rumors are Ramirez himself and his agent Scott Boras. Having the Yankees involved even in the periphery of a bidding war for the slugger only pushes Ramirez's pricetag higher, and as Boras and Ramirez have demonstrated repeatedly, that's just about all they care about.