POTD: Manny Happy Returns

Manny Ramirez wants out of Boston. His buddy David Ortiz says there is no way he plays in Beantown next season and recent reports have Seattle in Manny's crosshairs. Dr. Detecto dives into the fire to take a peak at what the M's might gain should they make a play for the future hall of fame bat.

Q: Most-Comparable Players to Manny Ramirez?

A: Frank Robinson and Hank Aaron. Without any question.

Manny Ramirez is this generation's Hank Aaron. ...or Frank Robinson, if you'd rather; the personalities match up better that way.

Q: Or what if he's a bit more than Delgado? Send them Jones, Nageotte, and Tuiasosopo if that's what it takes to chop the salary down. Send them JLo for all we care. Have a sense of proportion here. You don't hold back eggs when you can trade them for chickens, Elmer.

Hey, how many $3 soda proofs of purchase do we need, to order one moody superstar? I've got the pillowcase right here, Chuckster. Cash me out.

If cash is reallllllllllllllly a problemo here, we got two words for you. Adrian Beltre.

Q: Even if they were on his short list, even if he pitched a tent in their front yard, even if he promised to say "Mr. Armstrong" with a straight face ... the M's would never consider Manny, right?

A: We assume you are right, yes. But they certainly should.

Any reason you can give me for considering Carlos Delgado, I can give you back, with interest, for considering Manny Ramirez.

The M's can probably get Manny at a salary discounted to less than Delgado's -- and at the same time they can probably get him for less talent than they would have to pay to get Delgado.

It's like an Acura being cheaper and better than an Audi. f you're even talking to Florida about the price, then you can already afford Manny. In players and in salary.

Q: Um, Dr. D, in case you haven't heard, this team needs a left-handed sock.

A: Hitting righthanded?! ;kdvjpaiej;izvm; ... ;kdvjpaiej;izvm; ... ;kdvjpaiej;izvm; ... ::smashes head against keyboard:: Sure, RH vs LH is relevant to Manny ... as relevant as my car is, to the guy who backs that train up-and-down Safeco Street at 6:59.

Manny Ramirez' slugging percentage in Safeco is .815 since 2001. Let me read that sentence again. The last four years?! Isn't 815 the OBP+SLG for Jacque Jones after he's platooned?

Left- and right-handed is what you worry about with Jeremy Reed or Adrian Beltre. It's not what you worry about with a walking death machine. Move the Hit It Here sign to left field. But don't be so feebleminded as to think Manny Ramirez cares what park he hits in.

It makes exactly as much sense to worry about Manny's RH-ness, as it would to worry about Santana's vs. Felix' handedness.

Q: What is Manny's defining characteristic?

A: His picture is in the dictionary beside "Nature's Perfect Cleanup Hitter." Manny is -- not was, is -- one of the best #3 hitters who ever lived.

As Dr. D pointed out two years ago, consistency is his defining characteristic. Manny Ramirez has exactly the same season every single year.

This also means that he is NEVER INJURED, kiddies.

Year in and year out, Ramirez hits .320/.300/.600 with 30 HR and 120 RBI. Every year! In all the time we waste browsing almanacs, we have never seen any great player who was as mind-numbingly consistent as Manny Ramirez.

  • 7 - consecutive seasons, top ten, OBP
  • 7 - consecutive seasons, top ten, SLG
  • 7 - consecutive seasons, top 3, OPS
  • 8 - consecutive seasons, top ten, HR
  • 9 - consecutive seasons, top ten, Runs Created
  • 10th - all-time rank, OPS (above Mantle and Musial)
  • 9th - all-time rank, SLG (above McGwire, DiMaggio, ARod, Cobb, Mays)
  • 20th - all-time rank, adjusted OPS+ (higher than Hank Aaron or Frank Robinson; equal to Willie Mays)

  • Q: Could he make the Hall of Fame?

    A: If Manny were caught with Randy Johnson's girl tomorrow and put into the past tense by a hucked pinecone, his HOF induction would be preached at his internment this Saturday.

    His HOF stats are all clearly past the threshhold for induction -- and he's 30.

    I know you guys don't want to hear this, but Manny Ramirez is as good a hitter as Aaron, Mays, or Robinson were.

    Q: How much of a problem is he in the clubhouse?

    A: He's in the breakfast cereal category ... after you're past the fruitiness and nuttiness, you've still got nothing but flake.

    Manny is not threatening like Albert Belle, not sullen and resentful like Randy Johnson, but he is wayyyyyyy out there in Daffy Duck satellite city. The Red Sox roll their eyes and ignore his antics and go to World Serious-es with him. Some other team that didn't want to let the daffiness go, he would be a problem.

    Q: Can he be managed?

    A: Sure. Manny has precisely the same personality as a bling-bling NBA star. He's like ‘Melo Anthony or Kobe. Put him with the right coach and he's fine. Put him with Grady Little or Terry Francona and you got a problem.

    The entire reason that Manny wants to come to Seattle, is because Mike Hargrove is the Larry Brown to Manny's Allen Iverson.

    Look, bro'. Other teams go to the World Series with Kevin Brown and Randy Johnson and Manny Ramirez. That's because management is willing to do its part: to sweep up the droppings in the zoo. So fine. Order a crate of Oreos and scrape him out a tub of cream filling every night. It's the least you can do for us after 192 losses in two years.

    Yeah, Manny disrupts management's ease and cheer. He also disrupts enemy pitching.

    Q: How will he age?

    A: To D-O-V a truly comparable hitter to Manny, you would need all of the following seven things:

    1) A righthanded hitter

    2) A star

    3) A cleanup-type hitter with lots of HR

    3) With great consistency (no huge highs or off seasons)

    5) With good walks

    6) Preferably African-American

    7) Played since 1970

    There are three players I can find in that category: Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and Frank Robinson. Go look up their aging your ownself. They were all stars until the age of 40.

    People kick around these b-ref "comps" like Thome and Griffey. C'mon. Use the right criteria and get a similar player, already. For example, the ones listed by Detect-O-Vision.

    Jim Thome no less?! mutter, mumble, grmbl….

    ...Manny's production the next 2-3 years is a given. His production the next 5 years is very, very probable. When he's so old that he breaks ribs opening a jar of Metamucil, he'll get 100 ribbies.

    Q:His batting average was off last year. He's probably declining, right?

    A: Nada. Manny's .292 AVG last year does not suggest – at all -- that he is aging. He had 119 k's and 45 hr's last year at 33, and he had 121 k's and 45 hr's at the age of 26. Manny's balls-in-play rate is precisely the same as it has always been, so his expected AVG is precisely the same as it has always been. He could have hit .336 last year just as easily as .292.

    Ramirez is a career .314 hitter. That's his correct AVG projection for next year: .314.

    Q:Does he give back a bunch of runs with lousy defense?

    A: It is fashionable to say that, very baseball artiste to recommend ballet-like fielders. But left fielders don't kick away no 20 runs a year. :: sighing in mock exasperation::

    We know very little about defense, but Bill James estimates the impact of a LFer's defense as being about 1% of the ballgame. FWIW, the RATE stat (and the Win Shares stat) estimate Manny's defense as -10, -12 runs a year; VORP estimates his offensive contribution at about +70 runs a year past a AAA player. That'll do for me too.

    And you can deploy those skills selectively: when you have Moyer on the mound, you can DH Manny, and reduce his D-cost even further.

    Analysts who propagandize for defense are preaching the unknown, the unquantifiable, at the expense of the known and quantifiable (like OBP and SLG). It's not a cool-headed orientation. You KNOW Brian Giles gets on base a lot; you THINK Jacque Jones saves a bunch of runs with his glove. Be objective here. Take the facts over the guesswork.

    Do you ever see the Yankees hesitating on a Gary Sheffield? The Red Sox hesitating on Manny? The A's hestitating on Dick Stuart? The Seattle Mariners are the ones who swwooooon over pretty defense. And then they wake up to a bunch of 3-1 losses in August.

    Q: So, why does Boston want him out?

    A: They don't. He's demanding out. Boston isn't exactly Watts, if you get my drift.

    Q: I can't get past the fact that it would leave us with three RH hitters.

    A: That's your problem. We mean it in a good way.

    C'mon already. ...if you could warp in Hank Aaron to hit between Beltre and Sexson, would you pass on that too? In favor of Aubrey Huff, no doubt? No, no, I got it: Jacque Jones. You'd go for Jones over Aaron because, blast it, this teams needs "a" left-handed sock.

    Um, no, this team doesn't need a left-handed hitter who can hit 18 home runs. What it needs is a HOF'er. Manny's available. Free. They will pay you to take him!

    No, I know what: let the Anaheim Angels go get him. When it's a tight game and they get a couple guys on, and it's Vlad-Manny, we just go to our righty Mateo and the game's ours. Piece o' cake. MWAHAHahahahahah .... they're stepping right into our trap.

    Let's feint at Manny and bait the Angels into getting him. Thass' the ticket.

    The Mariners don't need lefty hitters or righty hitters or tall hitters or short hitters.


    End of story. Be very afraid,

    Dr D

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