Time for another Red Sox hatchet job, this time by Sean McAdam, moonlighting for ESPN.com. (Note to self, perhaps in addition to the Radio and TV tracking, should I be tracking all the articles these guys write on the side and collect paychecks from?) Alright, I’ll say it, this article is a joke. Pathetic. He makes the classic mistake of trying to appear objective in a national audience by exaggerating and bashing the team he covers. Here’s a few examples of how bad this article is:

“With (nearly) two years down and a full six (ugh!) years remaining, the Red Sox and Ramirez must continue to honor one another. At $20 million per season, the contract is as close to untradeable as any in the game, never more so than after the recent collective bargaining agreement was signed.”

OK…so we’re stuck with (at worst) the second best best hitter in baseball. (Bonds) That’s terrible. As for it being the worst or most untradeable contract…how about Mike Hampton, not only is his contract horrific, Hampton has been terrible. When Manny is at the plate, he gets the job done.

Thanks to the new CBA, Ramirez’s deal is actually more weighty than before, since, by definition, any team assuming the remainder of the contract would logically be pushed over the luxury tax threshold and therefore assessed an additional penalty.

Someone explain this to me, please. He says “any” team. Ok, so if Manny gets traded to the A’s, Royals, or Twins they magically get pushed up and over that 100+ Million luxury tax threshold? Total rubbish.

“I can’t think of a single team that would take him off their hands,” said a rival major-league executive. “It looks like their stuck.”

Speaking of lazy….ok, maybe it’s nickpicking, but the second “their” should be “they’re”..but don’t these guys nitpick?

“A discriminating baserunner who decides when he should run hard and when he shouldn’t, Ramirez enraged teammates and the entire organization on Sept. 9 at Tropicana Field…”

I’m still waiting for the first quote from an “enraged” teammate. Nomar said yesterday than Manny is a student of the game, who spends hours studying video and his teammates really appreciate that.

“Something else will happen with Manny,” said a weary Red Sox official later in the week. “I don’t know what, but it will be something.”

Is this unnamed person saying that Manny will create another big “something”, or that “something” huge will be created (in the media) by some minor incident surrounding Manny?

…the trademark early peel-off going from first to second on a double-play ball

Trademark owned by one Bernie Williams. How come his laziness in (not) running out ground balls in the playoffs doesn’t get mentioned?

“In what ranks as one of the most frustrating losses of the season, the Sox erased a 7-0 lead in Cleveland to tie the score, only to lose the game when center fielder Johnny Damon had to dash well over to left to field a ball that everyone agreed was the province of the left fielder: Ramirez.”

*Everyone* agreed on this? Who is everyone? Sure, and everyone agrees it was Manny’s fault that they were in the 7-0 hole to begin with.

One thing is certain: at these prices, no one is going to take their troubles off their hands.

It’s certain? So the Rockies wouldn’t trade Hampton for Manny? Would the Mets trade Mo for Manny? What kind of statement is this?

Bottom line, Yes, Manny has his “quirks” many of which enrage the media more than his teammates. But just why is Manny’s contract singled out for so much attention? He produces. You can make a list as long as your arm of players who are making huge money and not producing at all. McAdam and others make such a huge play of saying that Manny is lazy. From accounts from his teammates, Manny works very hard, and from reports we get in the offseason he’s an extremely hard worker then as well. How come there are no Yankees listed in the bad contracts list? Giambi and Manny are essentially the same player. Same contract. Bernie Williams has a monster contract and doesn’t hustle all the time, and was late for a World Series game. What would happen here if Manny did that? Take a look at Jeter’s production, both at the plate and in the field and tell me his contract is justified. Is he tradeable? Before you throw that “Jeter is the heart and soul of the Yankees and a clutch performer” stuff at me, put him on the Devil Rays. How much of an effect does he have? More than Ramirez would have? How about the Yankees paying Roger Clemens something like 14 Million dollars even if he doesn’t play for them next year. Was that a “bad” contract by the Yankees? Finally, what if Manny was the exactly the same on the field as he is now, but he had Johnny Damon’s personality. Still didn’t run hard, but gabbed with the writers whenever they wanted. Would he be attacked as he is now? I think we know the answer to that one. This just seems like another lame attempt at attention by a baseball writer in Boston struggling to keep readership and talk shows from devoting full attention to the Patriots. Of course, it’s just another coincidence that like Buckley yesterday, McAdam is on WEEI’s Big Show this afternoon.