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Manny Ramirez != Barry Bonds

Patrick Sullivan at Baseball Analysts already paid homage to Ken Tremendous on Jon Heyman’s latest column, but that won’t stop me from looking at this line:

[Manny Ramirez] could have replicated the years of Barry Bonds, with comparable productivity, less controversy and more good cheer.

I’m a fan of greatness, so Barry Bonds has a place in my heart despite the moral and legal issues associated with his legacy. Outside of crushing Rays pitching, I don’t believe I have too many bad things to say about Manny Ramirez either. Still yet, let’s analyze this step by step.

First up;

“Could have replicated the years of Barry Bonds”

The obvious response is “Oh, Manny’s playing for another decade?” Since, you know, Bonds spent quite a while in San Francisco. Second thought, Jon Heyman is out of his mind. Over the last three years, Manny has wRAAs of 49.2, 21.1, 56.3. Bonds last three seasons were 39.5, 33.2, and 4.3 – if you discard 2005, then you get 2004’s 108.8 wRAA season. CHONE has Manny at 38.3 and ZiPS says 35.5. We’ll call it 37. Of 15 seasons with San Fran, 37 wRAA would’ve ranked as Bonds’ fourth lowest offensive output. Manny is great, he’s not Bonds.

“comparable productivity”

See above, but if we’re talking present day Bonds, sure.

“less controversy”

Can’t argue against that one…

“and more good cheer”

Okay wait. Is this the same Manny Ramirez shipped out of Boston because Red Sox management was less than decisive on his option one way or the other which lead to him throwing constant temper tantrums? The same Manny who got into at least two shoving matches last year, including with a clubhouse attendant? The same Manny who invented the “Manny being Manny” motto after yearly trade requests? To recap:

Bonds
Was a prick in the clubhouse and took PEDs which might have made him a better player, therefore helping his team.

Bad guy.

Ramirez
Whined about his contract annually and gave questionable effort at times until he forced his way out of town.

Good guy.

The difference; their agents, silly.