(with this kind of countryside, wouldn’t you want a few days off?)
Though I’d rather you read the entire piece, Bruce Allen of Boston Sports Media comes up with some provocative stuff regarding All-Star no-show Manny Ramirez, and the way he’s treated.
Trot Nixon is lauded by most in the media for his hustle and œdirt dog style of play. However, he™s been known to make even more egregious errors on the field than Manny. Who can forget Trot making a catch, forgetting how many outs there were in the inning, and tossing the ball to a fan, allowing baserunners to advance? Afterwards, Nixon angrily swatted a fan™s beer off the nearby ledge. His demonstrated anger at himself endeared him to the media, whereas, had Manny done the same thing, his reaction would likely be a self-conscious, embarrassed grin, which would infuriate the various guardians of the gate for the great game of baseball.
Others question or even ridicule his intelligence. His hitting skills are minimized as he is described as a œslugging savant. On the surface, that™s might sound like a compliment, as a œsavant™ is a œlearned person, or scholar. However, it is clear in the context in which the term is often used that it is meant more along the lines of œidiot savant, or someone defined as œa mentally retarded person who exhibits genius in a highly specialized area; in this case, hitting. This of course implies that Ramirez™s incredible hitting ability is something that he has no command of. It would indicate that he doesn™t need to work at it. This of course is another fallacy, as Manny™s work habits in the batting cages, film room and off season training are well documented. Yet, all of that is dismissed with the œslugging savant label.
Many jokes are also made about his alleged lack of awareness about certain events. We™ve all heard the stories. How many of these are urban legends and how many are actually true is a matter of debate. He is referred to as a 12 year old. He is called goofy, flaky and oblivious “ all of which he might act like at times “ but these are allowed to overshadow and demean his accomplishments.
It seems clear that there is clearly an imbalance of reporting here. Manny™s quirks and incidents are covered much more than are his on-field accomplishments and statistics. The perception being given by the media is that Ramirez is simply a simpleton who just gets in the batters box and hits, and doesn™t care about anything else.