Manny Ramirez is serious about returning to baseball. While we can speculate about his true motives, one thing is clear: Manny doesn't want to be remembered as the once-great slugger who hit .059 in his final year before abruptly retiring due to another PED scandal.
ESPN.com has some quotes from an interview with Pedro Gomez:
"I want to show people that Manny can change, that he can do the right thing... And to show people that I still can play. I don't want to leave the game like I did. I also want to show my kids that if you make a mistake, don't quit. Just go back and fix it. And if you're going to leave, leave the right way."
Ramirez, who's currently working out in Florida, taking swings in a batting cage and getting in shape by working out in a pool, believes he can be a role model if a team gives him a chance.
"A bunch of guys are going to look at me and say hey, this guy made a mistake but he didn't quit. Look how he finished. He did the right thing and came back," Ramirez told Gomez.
I'm not 100% positive that Manny coming back is the "right thing". He's more than worn out his welcome in the majors. It's as simple as that. Manny's never come across a bridge he couldn't burn. While his bat has always forced us to ignore his transgressions, if he proved anything in Tampa it's that he flat out can't hit anymore. He looked slow and lost at the plate.
When he retired, we justifiably worried about Manny's life without baseball. Coming back is probably the best thing for him and his family. But I just can't see any team serious about bringing Manny aboard. He'll be lucky to get one minor league invite to prove that he still has some juice in his bat.
If Barry Bonds taught us anything, teams are willing to ignore talent to avoid black clouds and side shows; which Manny certainly is at this point.