Friday, January 21, 2011

These Exiled Years

Some hot stove news broke this evening that I definitely wasn't expecting. I had seen rumblings that the Rays were kicking Johnny Damon's tires to see if they wanted to give him a go. A few hours later, it comes out that not only have they signed Damon but... Manny Ramirez. Yes. THAT Manny Ramirez.

It's easier with Damon. He's not in a Yankee uniform anymore, so a lot of the animosity is gone. I'm not going to give him a standing ovation, but I'm not going to boo and yell obscenities. It's difficult for some people to understand, and it might seem childish. Damon signed with the Yankees in 2005 and played for the Tigers after that. I think after the 2004 World Series, Red Sox fans held the 25 members of that team in such high regard that such a level of betrayal is difficult to get over. At least it has been for me. Johnny is in the sunset of his career and I hope he can end it on a good note. Just not when the Rays are playing the Sox. Call it vindictive. I can't fully forgive. And I definitely haven't forgotten.

Manny, Manny, Manny. As complicated as things were with Damon after he left the Red Sox, there were quite a few complications while Manny was still IN Boston. My honest reaction to hear about his signing was "Ha! How the mighty have fallen!". And then I got quiet. And then I got pretty sad. Manny meant a lot to Red Sox Nation and to the team in his tenure there. For all of the crazy shenanigans, he and Ortiz were the best hitting tandem I can remember seeing. And you don't forget that. I'll never boo Manny. I appreciate his contributions too much to do that. It's just too... complicated.

Trying to snag tickets to a game when the Red Sox play the Pirates in Bradenton during Spring Training. Hopefully the Pirates virtual waiting room will be kinder.

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