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!
Cardinals shortstop Aledmys Diaz was childhood friends with Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, so it was expected when Diaz took time away from the team on Monday to visit Fernandez’s family in Miami. They grew up on the same street in Cuba and played for the same youth baseball team and both would ultimately wind up playing Major League Baseball in the United States.
In the bottom of the fourth inning of Tuesday night’s game against the Reds, Diaz hit a 2-1 Robert Stephenson fastball out to left-center field for a no-doubt grand slam. Teammate Yadier Molina gave Diaz a tight hug as he crossed home plate.
Before Tuesday’s game, Diaz said that the best way to honor Fernandez was to play with his passion, as MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch reports. Diaz said, “I only play for [Fernandez’s] family right now.”
Here’s the video.
The Red Sox would have clinched the AL East if one of two things happened on Tuesday night: the Red Sox themselves beat the Yankees, or the Orioles defeated the Blue Jays. Neither happened.
The Jays soundly took down the Orioles 5-1 behind six strong innings from Aaron Sanchez. Josh Donaldson went 2-for-2 with a two-run home run and a pair of walks and leadoff batter Ezequiel Carrera went 2-for-3 with a solo homer, an RBI single, a walk, and three runs scored.
Meanwhile, at Yankee Stadium, the Yankees outlasted the Red Sox for a 6-4 win, responding to both two-run innings the Sox had in the sixth and seventh with a run in the sixth and two in the seventh. Gary Sanchez hit his 20th homer of the season. Didi Gregorius and Tyler Austin also contributed dingers. Starter Luis Cessa pitched well, limiting the Sox to two runs over six innings on five hits and a walk with two strikeouts. Red Sox starter David Price struggled, yielding six runs in 6 1/3 innings. Yankees reliever Tyler Clippard got into trouble in the ninth inning but was able to wiggle out of trouble to finish out the game.
Once again, the Red Sox will be able to clinch the AL East on Wednesday with a win over the Yankees or a Blue Jays loss to the Orioles.