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Morgan Ensberg on Manny: “You are a fake and a cheat”

Apr 9, 2011, 8:05 PM EDT

ensberg pose Getty Images

Former MLB infielder Morgan Ensberg, who played against Manny Ramirez several times, is not happy with the way the slugger cheated the game and then retired before accepting a 100-game suspension:

How could you?  You coward!  You are a fake and a cheat and now you want to retire?  No way!  You get back out there and you take the pain.  You stand in front of the cameras and tell us that you are a fake.  Tell us that you only care about money.

Ensberg backs away from those initial comments a bit in this stream-of-consciousness post on his personal blog, but the words are pretty strong throughout and far more scathing than some of the reaction we’ve heard from different players and managers still in the league. It’s a worthwhile read for baseball fans seeking an opinionated player’s true perspective. Ensberg ends with this:

“When my kids ask me about baseball and the Steroid Era, I will look at them and say, ‘You know you don’t have to cheat to make it in life. All you have to do is try as hard as you can.'”

Ensberg had 574 hits and 110 homers over the course of an eight-year career. He retired at the age of 32.

  1. baseballstars - Apr 9, 2011 at 8:14 PM

    I’ll be glad next week when all this Manny stuff blows over. I hope to God/Flying Spaghetti Monster it doesn’t become the new “Brett Favre.”

  2. frogpissyanks - Apr 9, 2011 at 8:47 PM

    who is morgan ensberg?

    • kiwicricket - Apr 9, 2011 at 9:51 PM

      Manny is thinking the same thing

  3. nadu13 - Apr 9, 2011 at 9:15 PM

    Really? A Yankee uni. Does that make it a more interesting story? He played over 650 games for the Astros,

    • Drew Silva - Apr 9, 2011 at 11:55 PM

      It was the funniest picture I could find. Tough crowd.

    • Jim Abbott's Right-Hand Man - Apr 10, 2011 at 3:13 AM

      Actually, it is slightly more interesting for a guy who signed a free agent deal with the Yankees to accuse others of “only caring about the money.”

  4. kiwicricket - Apr 9, 2011 at 9:50 PM

    Something tells me that the puffed-up marsh-mellow man Ensburg of 2004-5 wouldn’t be so critical of Manny.

    • Old Gator - Apr 10, 2011 at 12:05 AM

      Sta-Puft. Get it right.

  5. derpdederpdederp - Apr 9, 2011 at 10:23 PM

    manny must be thinking (to paraphrase the great pedro martinez):

    “morgan ensberg, whos morgan ensberg? i have no respect for that guy. i dont have anything to prove to that guy. so what? who are you?”

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Apr 10, 2011 at 10:50 AM

      You lost me at “Manny must be thinking”

  6. fanoredsox - Apr 9, 2011 at 10:31 PM

    I don’t know who Ensberg is, but I 100% agree with him. Don’t leave your Rays teammates to deal with your B.S. with you slip out the back door and take your Dad to Spain. Coward.

    • Old Gator - Apr 10, 2011 at 12:07 AM

      I agree. Take your 100 game suspension like a man, Manny. Then retire.

      Um…uh….

      • jwbiii - Apr 10, 2011 at 12:10 AM

        Absolutely. That’s over $1.25M he’s leaving on the table!

      • jwbiii - Apr 10, 2011 at 9:57 AM

        My bad. Suspension -> Restricted list -> No paychecks

  7. jwbiii - Apr 9, 2011 at 10:34 PM

    The best post from Morgan Ensberg’s blog.

  8. bradwins - Apr 9, 2011 at 11:22 PM

    Morgan Who?

  9. nyyankeefanforever - Apr 10, 2011 at 2:10 AM

    1st prediction….and please remember you read it here first: Manny is going to do what all weasels have done before him who have no other cash left to grab: Rush out a tell-all book that will bust all his roid-injecting butt buddies.

    2nd prediction: Since the Sox are the team du jour to go all the way, count on him and his agent to focus all his memoirs on shattering the whole happy scruffy idiot Boston mythology and make their 1-7 start look like a picnic compared to the nuke job he does on their reputation and recent rings.

    • kiwicricket - Apr 10, 2011 at 2:55 AM

      Manny grabbed more cash than all the previous weasels combined. I don’t think we will see him in a ring fighting former child-stars anytime soon(unfort.)

    • JBerardi - Apr 11, 2011 at 7:07 AM

      My prediction: none of this crap is going to happen and you’re never going to hear from Manny Ramirez again.

  10. mrznyc - Apr 10, 2011 at 9:15 AM

    Isn’t this just “Manny being Manny?”

    • kellyb9 - Apr 11, 2011 at 9:31 AM

      Morgan being Morgan*

  11. Charles Gates - Apr 10, 2011 at 10:00 AM

    Amazed that most of the comments thus far have been a variation of, ‘Who is this Morgan Ensberg fellow?’
    I would have guessed at there’d be at least a little name recognition for a guy that finished 4th in the NL MVP voting a mere 6 years ago.

  12. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Apr 10, 2011 at 10:52 AM

    Glad to hear a player finally speak out. If only their union was protecting the honest players. I am still in shock at how thoroughly the MLBPA has sided with the cheaters to the disadvantage of the honest players. It almost seems like they need a new union to protect them from the current union.

  13. jaypace - Apr 10, 2011 at 12:27 PM

    How bogus was the Mitchell report. Mitchell held a position with the red sox and named, I don’t know every Yankee since 1980 in it yet there were no sox players named. No since then Ortiz and manny got caught. I don’t care about juicing but MLB is full of ish.

    • Gardenhire's Cat - Apr 10, 2011 at 6:15 PM

      Gene Mitchell being the director of the Red Sox might help explain why Manny and Ortiz failed to appear in the report

    • jwbiii - Apr 10, 2011 at 6:17 PM

      Other than Manny Alexander, José Canseco, Paxton Crawford, Roger Clemens, Chris Donnels, Jeremy Giambi, Mike Lansing, Josias Manzanillo, Kent Mercker, Mike Stanton, Mo Vaughn, Steve Woodard, and Eric Gagne, you are 100% correct.

    • jwbiii - Apr 10, 2011 at 6:18 PM

      Oops. Forgot Brendan Donnelly.

    • jwbiii - Apr 10, 2011 at 8:33 PM

      And this.

    • JBerardi - Apr 11, 2011 at 7:12 AM

      Now where have I heard this before?

      “Where are all the Red Sox on the list, George Mitchell, the MAYOR of MAINE?!”

  14. yankeesgameday - Apr 10, 2011 at 12:33 PM

    This is a long post where I site a bunch of reference material to call Morgan Ensberg a hypocrite:

    Morgan Ensberg might want to check the public records on his own playing career before he goes off at the mouth on Manny Ramirez, because whether or not he actually took PEDs doesn’t matter… these numbers paint an insanely suspicious picture.

    let’s take a look at Morgan Ensberg’s Home Run Totals by year shall we: http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/e/ensbemo01.shtml

    2002 – 3
    2003 – 25
    2004 – 10
    2005 – 36 with 101 RBI (every other year his RBI total was right around 60)
    2006 – 23
    2007 – 24

    so, in 2005, the absolute height of the steroid era, Ensberg hit more HR, had 40 more RBI than at any other point in his career and played in 150 games, 30 games more than at any other point in his career. Meaning he stayed healthier and recovered faster…

    The rest of this is posted from his Wikipedia page and it charts the decline of an athlete who never had the stellar ability of a Ramirez, Bonds or McGuire, but could be the poster child for someone who juiced in 2005 — when he saw what it did for teammates like Ken Caminiti – in order to put up big numbers and get that contract.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morgan_Ensberg

    During the 2006 season, Ensberg’s numbers fell and Ensberg began platooning third base with newly acquired Aubrey Huff and occasionally Mike Lamb.

    After disappointing seasons for the Astros in 2006 and 2007, the team designated Ensberg for assignment on July 29, 2007, ending Ensberg’s six year tenure with the club.[2]

    On July 31, 2007, the Astros traded Ensberg to the San Diego Padres. This was only days after the Astros traded pitcher Dan Wheeler to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays for third baseman Ty Wigginton. The Astros paid the remainder of Ensberg’s $4.35 million dollar salary. He is a Southern California native and recently bought a house near San Diego. [2] Ensberg hit two home runs and a single in his Padres debut [3]

    Ensberg was not offered a new contract by the Padres and became a free agent on December 12, 2007. On January 31, 2008, he signed a minor league contract with the New York Yankees with an invitation to spring training, anticipating to compete for the first base position.[3] On March 22, Ensberg was added to the Yankees 40-man roster.[4]

    In 2008, Ensberg hit .203 with a home run and 4 runs batted in for the Yankees. The Yankees designated him for assignment on June 1, and released him on June 8. On June 17, Ensberg signed a minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians. He became a free agent at the end of the season.

    On February 9, 2009, Ensberg signed a minor league deal with the Tampa Bay Rays and was invited to the major league camp.[5] However, he was released at the end of spring training.[6] After the 2009 season, Ensberg decided to retire from baseball due to lack of interest from any major league teams.

    — So when Ensberg tells Manny he wants him to face the cameras and say he is only about the money… I might suggest he do the same.

    • yankeesgameday - Apr 10, 2011 at 12:38 PM

      sorry, meant to say Jeff bagwell, not Ken Caminiti. I had Caminiti on the brain from another section of that post that i cut. his reference was a remnant.

  15. notdumb - Apr 11, 2011 at 12:15 AM

    i wish all the brainwashed nerds who resent anyone with talent especially athletic talent would shut up about steroids . its the best thing to happen to baseball since babe ruth the majority of all successful athletes in any american sport are on them ramirez is one of the best hitters of all time should be a first ballot HOFer and he competed against a bunch of guys also on PEDs . but so many who feel imasculated by people who have athletic ability love a chance to tear someone down they feel inferior to. listen up if you hate the players so much and are jealous of the money they make stop watdhing

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