A Little More Baseball: Manny to the Cards?

Albert Pujols mentioned that he'd like the Cards to invest in Manny Ramirez. Looking at their lineup, one can see why. Pujols hasn't had any real protection since the fade of Edmonds and the departure of Rolen. Ankiel faded last season (hitting well below .200 in both August and September), and expecting Glaus to play 162 requires crossing-fingers and sacrificing chickens. So, sure, the Cards could use another bat. And I would argue that Ramirez and Pujols are the two best right-handed hitters of my lifetime, and, perhaps, all-time. If you look at all the numbers, and not just home runs, then they are both better than that other guy.

But its not going to happen. If you look over at Cot's Baseball Contracts, then you'll see that the Cards salary is already at 99 million. Nothing suggests that the cards could afford Manny, even at a discount he's going to command 20 million a year. And, the Cards second best hitter is likely Ryan Ludwick, their young left field prospect who OPS'd .966 last year (compared to Manny's 1.041).

As I mentioned in my last post, Manny is in baseball purgatory. He is being punished for the second highest baseball crime: slacking (gambling, of course, is the worst). I honestly believe that if you could assure the Cardinals, or any team, that you'd get the Dodgers' Manny (.396 .489 .743 OPS+ of 219), they'd offer Boras' desired 6 years, 150 million in the time it took to grab a pen. But real life isn't MLB: The Show. Manny's Boston numbers last season (.299 .398 .529 OPS+ of 136) demonstrate that he will tank it if he is unhappy with his contract. And the very nature of this off-season ensures that, wherever he signs next season, he will be unhappy.

Hey, whoever, good luck with that.

1 comment:

mike said...

Slacking has always been Manny's problem. He did it in Cleveland, he did it in Boston, and he'll do it again wherever he lands. I'm hoping he goes to the Yankees, so he'll at least have to get a damn haircut.