JEFF NOWAK — Editor-In-Chief
It isn’t uncommon for professional athletes to hit the self-destruct button after leaving a professional sport.
From Lawrence Taylor being arrested for soliciting a 16-year-old prostitute to Dennis Rodman assaulting Carmen Electra; it is almost an expected occurrence. This is not all that surprising considering the millions handed to these players who are not always morally sound, to say the least.
However, the controlled burn of Manny Ramirez over the last four years has been something to behold. If you watch Ramirez’s daily activities similarly as you would a train wreck, much like I do, then you have heard about his most recent domestic violence arrest.
The man who was worshipped as a king in Boston after helping to finally break the Curse of the Bambino, has now become nothing more than an “alleged” wife-beating former baseball player.
But how did we get to this point? Let’s recap.
Between going into the Green Monster to take a phone call in between innings, throwing balls into the stands after the second out of an inning, cutting off throws from other outfielders, failing to run out ground balls and the myriad of other Manny being Mannyisms—most had grown to accept the oft-eccentric slugger.
It wasn’t until 2008 when his antics began to really anger the Boston faithful, and his imminent implosion became obvious to all. In July 2008, Ramirez had an altercation with Jack McCormick, the team’s traveling secretary, which resulted in Manny pushing the 64-year-old man to the ground. It was later established Ramirez was upset McCormick could not secure him 16 tickets to an upcoming game in Houston.
About a month later Manny was traded to the Dodgers and preceded to lead them to an NL West title. The next season was his first run-in with steroids, or rather a woman’s fertility drug used to restart testosterone production after a cycle of steroids.
This season Ramirez was suspended by the MLB for 100 games, just five games into the season, for yet another positive test, and chose to retire rather than serve the time—possibly the best decision made by the man since entering the league.
Manny then attempted to play in the Dominican Republic but was informed that the league he was attempting to join was affiliated with the MLB and he would still have to serve his suspension. He has since applied for reinstatement, stating that if no teams show interest, he will “play in Japan or some other place.”
It’s sad to see a player of his caliber suffer from what can be nothing other than insanity. As interesting as it is to watch a train wreck, this has turned into more of a nuclear meltdown, with anyone in the vicinity being a potential victim. At least NFL players can blame head trauma for their post-career eccentricities.
What’s Manny’s excuse?