Love for Manolito
Count me as one who is a BIG fan of the new, energized Manny. Forget hustling to 1st on groundouts, he's hustling in the outfield - I bet his Range Factor is up from last year already - and seems a lot less spacey to me. Good for him.
The unexpected story line of the season's first month revolves around Ramirez, who apparently is constitutionally incapable of harboring a grudge. Given ample cause to resent the way he was treated in the offseason, when the Sox first placed him on irrevocable waivers, then tried to unload him to the Texas Rangers in a deal for A-Rod, Ramirez instead has become the ultimate happy camper, and has gone out of his way to let everyone -- including media types he has studiously avoided in the past -- know it.
His locker has become a regular stop for reporters seeking a postgame quote, and he has sat down for any number of TV interviews, including one yesterday afternoon with NESN.
"A lot of people expected me to come back mad, this and that," Ramirez said on camera. "But life is too short."
But what accounts for this newfound willingness to reach out more publicly, to become Manny Ramirez, media go-to guy?
"You're welcome," Kevin Millar said to an inquisitor posing that very question.
But no love from my father as yet (that's the real test):
"Still a shithead. Always has been. Always will be." --Dad