When I heard the news that 41-year old Manny Ramirez signed a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers, I just laughed. Usually when I hear news of a player who is unable to accept that the game of baseball is finished with him, I feel bad; sympathetic to the notion that, no matter what you do, you just can’t stop time. But in this case, there is no sympathy. How do you feel bad for a guy who, not only was a complete [insert your own expletive here] throughout his career, but was also caught cheating on more than one occasion and opted to leave the game rather than accept his punishment? You don’t. You move on and leave the past in the past.
To be honest, I really didn’t think much of the signing. Stupid for the Rangers? I thought so. But there’s probably very little money invested and for whatever is being spent, the team is sure to make it up at the gates at Triple-A Round Rock when the mindless sheep eager to gawk at the latest circus sideshow line up in droves. But what gets me is that there seems to be a belief that Ramirez will not only succeed in his comeback bid but that he’ll also make some sort of a positive impact. Come on, people. You’ve got to be kidding me.
I was stunned when I saw the first fantasy email that asked if it was a good move to drop someone in order to stash Manny for a second half run. Stunned. Even just a cursory glance at the numbers from Los Angeles, Tampa Bay and Triple-A Sacramento over the last few years would tell you just how ridiculous a notion that is and that’s even before we bring up the question of whether or not he still has to serve the 100-game suspension he bucked by walking away from the Rays in 2011. What in the world would possess you to think that dropping proven major league talent to stash a clown like Ramirez would be a positive move for your fantasy team? Because he raked in Taiwan? Seriously? Taiwanese baseball is barely on par with our Single-A leagues and that might even be a little generous.
You’re not being some savvy fantasy GM who is showing good foresight by making a move like this. Dropping anyone in favor of stashing Manny is ludicrous and all it does is reveal to your fellow owners that you are a buffoon when it comes to this game; someone who is destined to be an annual donator and proud resident of your league’s standings basement. Manny has absolutely no value on your roster today and he has no value on your roster tomorrow. He’s not waging some big comeback and he’s not going to be the Rangers’ DH in the second half. You will not see a boost in your offensive totals and you will not be lauded by your peers for making such a bold and successful move.
Manny Ramirez has no business playing professional baseball anymore and there is no place for him in the fantasy realm either. His placement on your roster comes at the expense of a legitimate major league player and no matter who that player is, the price is too costly. Do not give his return another thought. Walk away. Just say no. If you don’t, then the joke’s not only on you, it is you. Thanks for your donation.
Howard Bender has been covering fantasy sports for over 10 years on a variety of websites. In addition to his work here, you can also find him at his site, RotobuzzGuy.com, Fantasy Alarm, RotoWire and Mock Draft Central. Follow him on Twitter at @rotobuzzguy or for more direct questions or comments, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org