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Kenny And Ozzie Comment On Manny ... Sort Of

Manny Ramirez’ possible acquisition by the White Sox was Topic 1 of conversation before last night’s Sox/Orioles game. Kenny Williams had to tiptoe around the issue to avoid a fine for tampering:

“Well, if I spoke on that … it’s a violation of tampering rules, and it’s very clear and prohibited for me to speak on another player on another team, so you have to speak in generalities all the time,‘’ Williams said. ’’You guys know me. … When we do something, we’ll make an announcement. Otherwise, there’s just no sense talking about anything.’’

Ozzie, as usual, had no such muzzle on him:

‘’I can handle anyone,’’ Guillen said. ‘’I don’t have to handle the players. The players handle themselves. I’ve had players who have come to the ballclub with a reputation that they’re bad for the ballclub. And with me, they were very good.

‘’Bringing players aboard is not my department. My department is write the lineup and make the guys play the best they can. If Manny comes here, he’s more than welcome.

‘’I don’t have any phone calls from Kenny, I don’t have any phone calls from [assistant general manager] Rick [Hahn] or Jerry. To me, it’s rumors. Kenny also does stuff very quiet, not with me, with the media and people. If he comes here, then we have to wait to see when he comes here to see what happens.’’

But here, as the Sun-Times’ Joe Cowley writes, may be the thing that kills this deal before it’s made:

If the Dodgers put Ramirez on waivers, the Sox would owe him $1.1 million for the rest of the season and another $3.3 million in deferred money.

Ramirez can veto the move to another team because of his full no-trade clause, forcing the Dodgers to pull him back.

There have been rumors of Manny signing with the White Sox in other years, when he was a free agent. His contract expires at the end of this season; the Sox are closer to the postseason than the Dodgers are, so perhaps “Manny being Manny”, he’d approve such a deal. We’re likely to find out very soon; there’s only a week left for any such waiver deals.