The LA Times’ resident Lt. Dangle baiter T.J. Simers “remains unconvinced Frank McCourt really wants Manny Ramirez back”, accusing the Dodgers’ owner of “playing fans and the baseball world for fools” with the past week’s reports of a huge offer being made to the former Red Sox/Indians slugger.

Everyone in baseball knows Ramirez wants some longevity, so why did the Dodgers use their exclusive negotiating window with agent Scott Boras to make an offer they knew would be unacceptable? Just for show, of course, McCourt consistently mindful of image, going through more PR consultants than GMs and managers.

The only thing that should matter is that Ramirez means more to the Dodgers than any free agent means to any other team.

The Dodgers became relevant again, and only because of Ramirez. If you’re going to make a franchise-changing/saving offer at a time when no one else can, the only offer made should be one so good it can’t be turned down — before anyone else gets the chance to enter the bidding.

We know about the Dodgers’ offer because they wanted everyone to know about it even though they readily admitted Boras was probably going to wait and listen to others Nov. 14.

Maybe it was just an opening bid, as some contend, although Colletti has already talked about taking it back. Maybe McCourt spends the rest of this week using this exclusive window to close a deal for Ramirez.

Or maybe the Dodgers will just go with Juan Pierre or Andruw Jones in Ramirez’s place.

And maybe, just maybe, even a baseball ‘tard like McCourt can see the folly in locking up an aging Manny for more than two years.  And there’s also the possibility the Dodgers are wary of bidding against themselves.