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Manny Ramirez cost Bob Melvin his “chance at greatness”

Apr 12, 2011, 11:36 AM EDT

Manny Ramirez

There’s all kinds of Manny Ramirez hate floating around the web right now. It’s expected and understandable and you kinda gotta let it run its course.

But some of it is just plain insane. Like this post at Business Insider by Cork Gains. In it he argues that Manny Ramirez was responsible for Bob Melvin losing his job twice — first in Seattle and then in Arizona — because of his cheating.  Seems the 2003 Red Sox beat out the Mariners for the Wild Card and the 2008 Dodgers came back to overtake the Diamondbacks for the NL West title.  Bob Melvin was fired soon after each of these occurrences.  Gaines characterizes it thusly:

That makes two instances in which Manny’s cheating cost Melvin-led squads a fair shot at the playoffs. And in each case, if Melvin’s teams make the postseason, he is probably not fired the following year. Nobody can argue that Manny was a great baseball player. But his cheating cost others a chance at greatness. And maybe nobody lost more than Bob Melvin. Does that sound like a Hall-of-Famer?

Yes, as I’ve always argued, the only thing that kept Bob Melvin from achieving “greatness” as a manager was that cheating, meddling Manny Ramirez!  He’s bad news, I tells ya!  He’s Agrajag to Manny’s Arthur Dent, continually reincarnated as the next Casey freakin’ Stengel, only to be subsequently killed by Manny, except unlike Arthur Dent, Ramirez did it with malice aforethought.

Um, OK. I may have gone too geeky with that last reference. But the article is still bonkers.

UPDATE: But amazingly, it’s not even the most bonkers thing this author has written about Manny Ramirez in the last 24 hours!

  1. deathmonkey41 - Apr 12, 2011 at 11:45 AM

    Uh, hello? Both of the Red Sox World Series titles this decade are a complete fraud. Manny & Ortiz both have tested positive and I don’t think there is a single person stupid enough to believe that they would have even been in the playoffs without the ridiculous offensive numbers from those two. Then you have a whole slew of other players on those teams that put up career numbers and then dropped off the face of the earth after the steroid outrage started and they had to stop using. There hasn’t been a team as juiced up as the Red Sox since those Tony LaRusa Oakland A’s teams of the early 90’s.

    • billtpa - Apr 12, 2011 at 11:54 AM

      No, I doubt anyone believes they’d have won the World Series without Ramirez and Ortiz. The amazingly huge leap in logic there, though, and in the article linked above, is that somehow those ridiculous offensive numbers were a creation of steroids. We don’t have a clue what either of them took, or when, or what effect (if any) those things had on their ability to hit a baseball. All we know is that at some point in the past (points, in Manny’s case), they had in their bodies some substance that was at some point banned by MLB (as did an apparent majority of the people they were playing with and against). That’s it.

      • deathmonkey41 - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:20 PM

        I believe the dramatic drop in numbers after being exposed tells you all you need to know about how much what they were using was helping them achieve those gaudy numbers.

      • billtpa - Apr 12, 2011 at 2:29 PM

        Well, it certainly doesn’t, but even if it did, that’s across all of baseball, not specific to Manny and Ortiz. My blog partner just took a look at this: http://bit.ly/fvxXx0. It looks to me that based on what we know (which is a tiny, tiny fraction of what we’d need to know to draw any kind of conclusion on any of this), the late nineties and early 2000s Yanks were at least as “juiced up” as the ’04 and ’07 Sox were.

    • bradwins - Apr 12, 2011 at 11:58 AM

      Wow. What an incredibly absurd thing to say. I don’t think you’ll get any argument from anyone that individual records from the “steroid era” are tainted. But team accomplishments clearly are an entirely different thing, mainly because the use of PEDs was so widespread. There were no teams from the time period that were completely clean. In fact, there probably were not very many star players from that time period that were clean, if any.

      For instance, the 2004 Red Sox beat Yankees in the ALCS and the Cardinals in the World Series. Are you suggesting that the 2004 Yankees and the 2004 Cardinals were PED-free teams and victims of the Red Sox having an unfair advantage? I certainly hope that is not what you are suggesting. For your sake.

    • aaronmoreno - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:04 PM

      Can we start declaring champs from the past decade invalid? Who’s left standing?

      • Gobias Industries - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:23 PM

        Ladies and gentlemen, your 1990-2010 World Champions, the Kansas City Royals!

      • bigharold - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:49 PM

        “Ladies and gentlemen, your 1990-2010 World Champions, the Kansas City Royals!”

        Who says the Royals weren’t juicing? Perhaps hey were just no good at it?

        1990-2010 ES Champs, … None of the above!

      • jwbiii - Apr 12, 2011 at 5:09 PM

        The Mitchell Report named Ricky Bones, Paul Byrd, Jeremy Giambi, Juan Gonzalez, Jason Grimsley, Phil Hiatt, Wally Joyner, Chuck Knoblauch, Hal Morris, Benito Santiago, Rondell White, Kevin Young, and Gregg Zaun, so, no, not the Royals.

      • cur68 - Apr 12, 2011 at 5:11 PM

        I like where this is going. I’m tossing the Blue Jays in there. If sucking for a decade indicates non-steroid use then those guys are at least division champs.

    • xnumberoneson - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:06 PM

      Speaking of frauds, how about those Yankee titles won with known juicers like Pettitte, Clemens and A-Rod. Not to mention all those guys who had career years in Yankee uniforms who haven’t been officially linked to PEDs. I mean, if you’re going to call out every World Series champ with a juicer on it as fraudulent, you might as well be consistent.

      • deathmonkey41 - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:34 PM

        A-Rod tested postive when he was with the Rangers- there’s never been any indication that he used while with the Yankees. Pettite used in 2002- not a year the Yankees won the WS. Both of whom have manned up and admitted to using- unlike ManRam and The Big Popup.

      • deathmonkey41 - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:09 PM

        And who are these guys in Yankee uniforms that had career numbers that are under suspicion?

      • chrisdtx - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:13 PM

        So you are naiive enough to think that A-Rod quit as soon as he put on pinstripes, but cynical enough to believe that Manny and Papi didn’t after their (hypothetical) failed tests in 2003? That is, as the kids say, weaksauce.

      • bradwins - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:23 PM

        There is literally an endless list of Yankees who were PED users, but that doesn’t even matter. I didn’t bring that up before because this should not be reduced to a Red Sox/Yankees thing. Its a baseball thing. It doesn’t sense to try to diminish a team accomplishment, regardless of which team, based on a couple players with known links to PEDs. There are definitely far more unknown users than there are known users, and there definitely users on every team. So can we eliminate the idiotic “[team I don't like] had player X, Y and Z on steroids, therefore that team’s accomplishments shouldn’t count.” The same argument could be made every team in baseball (even the ones with no apparent accomplishments of note), so it shouldn’t be made about any.

      • deathmonkey41 - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:25 PM

        chrisdtx – Apr 12, 2011 at 1:13 PM
        So you are naiive enough to think that A-Rod quit as soon as he put on pinstripes, but cynical enough to believe that Manny and Papi didn’t after their (hypothetical) failed tests in 2003? That is, as the kids say, weaksauce.

        There’s nothing hypothetical about it- they were both on the list. And how would that be naiive? Manny has failed two drug tests since then- one that got him suspended 50 games and another that forced him to retire. I haven’t heard anything about A-Rod failing any drug tests, have you?

      • chrisdtx - Apr 12, 2011 at 2:38 PM

        OK, the “list” of the 104 failed tests (from 2003) is nefarious in both origin and accuracy. But let’s say it were gospel. That means Manny failed tests in 2003, 2009 and 2011. Papi failed in 2003 only. The Red Sox won in ’04 and ’07. I’m not seeing how this taints anything, using your reasoning.

  2. billtpa - Apr 12, 2011 at 11:49 AM

    This is astoundingly foolish, and buy a guy I used to think really knew his stuff (Gaines also runs raysindex.com). Surprising, to say the least.

    • Kevin S. - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:19 PM

      Not really. Dude got into a ban-fest because people had the audacity to disagree with him about the worthiness of wins.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:14 PM

        Have a link? I need a good laugh this afternoon.

      • Kevin S. - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:15 PM

        Can’t – I was banned.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:34 PM

        Is the one linked via a BTF thread here?
        http://www.baseballthinkfactory.org/files/newsstand/discussion/rays_index_debunking_the_myth_wins_is_a_useless_statistic_for_starting_pitc/

        And sonofa, just found out Gaines is a fellow Fordham Grad, FML

      • Kevin S. - Apr 12, 2011 at 2:02 PM

        Yeah, that’s it. All the juicy stuff was scrubbed out of the comments, I believe.

      • madhatternalice - Apr 12, 2011 at 4:17 PM

        Concur. I got into a discussion in the comments of that “blog” post today, only to find my comments scrubbed, because I dared to disagree with “Cork.”

  3. wowbaggertheinfinitelyprolonged - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:04 PM

    Nothing to do with the great Douglas Adams can be classed as too geeky. More Hitch-Hikers please!

    • Old Gator - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:13 PM

      I second that. More Douglas Adams, less Manny Ramirez.

      • wowbaggertheinfinitelyprolonged - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:38 PM

        Wow! The famous Old Gator replied to one of my comments!

        I am as happy as Eccentrica Gallumbits when the Star Fleet docks at port after its five year mission!

      • Old Gator - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:37 PM

        And your happiness makes me as happy as Dirk Gently would have been if he had gotten the goods on Slick Willie and Monica.

    • 4d3fect - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:11 PM

      Oh no, not again.

  4. Jonny 5 - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:12 PM

    Did anyone even hear the announcers to last nights bosox blowout game trashing Manny? It was as if he slapped their mamma and bedded their wives for goodness sakes. The level of anger there is hard for me to comprehend.

    • Old Gator - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:14 PM

      Reading all the bellyaching and vitriol on the internet is a lot like looking at things underwater. They seem bigger than they are and they get soft around the edges.

      • asharak - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:22 PM

        Comment of the Day, right there.

      • Jonny 5 - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:34 PM

        Baseball players aren’t, never were, and never will be perfect. Because they’re human. I can’t get over the level of shock and hatred people feel for sports players who prove they’re only human. Like the rest of us. And like players before them. Rose colored glasses maybe???

      • clydeserra - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:45 PM

        ROSE COLORED GLASSES?!?!?!?!

        He’s a cheater too!!! BURN HIM, BURN THEM ALL!

  5. Chris Fiorentino - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:22 PM

    That is about the most insane thing I have ever seen. Why didn’t the author just blame Manny’s mom and dad, because, let’s face it, if they had never met, then he would have never been born. And if he never had been born, he would never had been able to cheat Bob Melvin out of playoff berths.

    F*CK YOU CORK!!!!

    • madhatternalice - Apr 12, 2011 at 4:17 PM

      Cork is just awful. Go back and read some of his older stuff.

  6. Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Apr 12, 2011 at 12:25 PM

    Manny may have cost Manny his “chance at greatness.”

  7. riverace19 - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM

    Give me a freaking break. Bob Melvin was a bad manager. Manny got caught with PEDs twice. The attempt to relate these two is not borderline ridiculous, it’s all the way into insanity country. Craig Calcaterra you make my head hurt and your space on this site would be better used for something real.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:13 PM

      You know what makes my head hurt, people who don’t realize that when there’s indented paragraphs in an article means Craig (or DJ or Aaron or anyone else who writes here) is quoting someone else’s work!

      • riverace19 - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:33 PM

        Yeah I get that. I am able to read information and comprehend it. I’m saying this is a waste of space. Continue to kneel down on your pulpit of outrage.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:36 PM

        How is it a waste of space? He’s highlighting a ridiculous article about an [ex] baseball player. This is a blog about baseball…

  8. professorperry - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:10 PM

    Surely Bret Boone’s profile is among the most suspicious of the early 2000s.

    • jeremysgordon - Apr 12, 2011 at 2:06 PM

      Suspicious? I thought it was common knowledge he used steroids.

  9. baseballisboring - Apr 12, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    HA. Come on now, I think we’re getting a little carried away…Melvin never even managed the freaking guy. This is a reach even for the most outspoken steroids haters.

    • fquaye149 - Apr 12, 2011 at 2:11 PM

      Are you being sarcastic?

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