It’s no secret that Manny Ramirez had the tendency to be a real pain in the neck during his time with the Red Sox. It eventually came to be too much for the Sox to handle, and they traded him away, but not before the slugger enjoyed a very successful stint in Boston.
That time with the Red Sox was a balancing act for the club, particularly manager Terry Francona. Sure, Ramirez was one of the best right-handed hitters of his time, but he also came with a seemingly unending string of headaches when it came to sometimes spacey or lackadaisical on-field play as well as some issues away from the diamond.
Yet Ramirez was so good that the Red Sox dealt with it, because again, he was that good. It got to the point, apparently, that the rest of the Red Sox clubhouse was told to “look the other way” when it came to Ramirez’s antics. That’s according to former Boston outfielder Gabe Kapler, who won a 2004 World Series ring with the team — a team that was led by Ramirez (the World Series MVP).
Now, with Yasiel Puig dominating headlines with the Los Angeles Dodgers, a comparison between him and Ramirez seems to fit. Puig was sat down and fined Tuesday night after showing up late to the ballpark. He eventually pinch-hit, and all he did was hit a go-ahead home run. So you could see where the similarities are.
“It brings me back to the 2004 Red Sox and Terry Francona and how he decided to discipline Manny Ramirez,” Kapler said on FOX Sports Live. “[Francona] told everybody in the clubhouse that ‘Guys, we have to look the other way when Manny does crazy things.’
“In this case, ‘Puig being Puig’ isn’t exactly ‘Manny being Manny,’ and [Dodgers manager Don] Mattingly has to enforce a little bit more. Young players, they need boundaries in order to develop appropriately. Puig is reckless on the field. He overthrows cutoff men, runs the bases recklessly, and at this point, he needs a little bit of discipline.”
See the FOX Sports Live panel discuss Puig in the video below.