With the permission of the Boston Red Sox, Manny Ramirez will report to spring training in Fort Myers on March 1, 2006. Manny is in Florida completing an extensive training regimen, and is prepared to have an exceptional season.So, how much ink will the media spill on this "story" over the next week? It's hard to say -- the team does have other issues that fans would like to hear about. (Hey, maybe Manny will show up on February 27 and say he decided to report early!)
Regardless, I believe Ramirez's teammates when they say they're cool with him reporting within the rules of the CBA.
Bronson Arroyo had the quote of the day:
Outwardly he's happy-go-lucky. On the inside he's got a lot of conspiracy theories going on. I would say Manny might be one of these guys [who] when he's 50 years old, he might be in his house with all the blinds shut, kind of looking out like the CIA's after him.Orlando Cabrera stoked the fire by telling the Orange County Register that Manny "really wanted me to talk to people here [Anaheim] to tell them that he really wants to come here. ... They've been trying to get rid of him for the last three years. I don't see no reason why he would be happy."
The more interesting aspect of all of this to me is whether Ramirez will play for the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic. If he does, it would mean he'd pop into the Sox camp for one day before heading to Orlando for some workouts before the tournament.
The DR's provisional 60-man roster will be cut in half on March 2. MLB hasn't heard anything about Ramirez not playing, but David Ortiz says: "I don't know what he's going to do with the Baseball Classic. I have no idea."