Chicago Sun-Times
with sports reporters Daryl Van Schouwen and Chris De Luca

'Mannywood' on the South Side?

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manny-ramirez.jpgKen Williams had to choose his words carefully on Tuesday, as the general manager was bombarded with questions surrounding the rumors that the White Sox will try and claim Los Angeles Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez if, and when, he is put on waivers and clears to the South Side.
"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, I prefer to sit back and when we do something we'll make an announcement, otherwise there's just no sense talking about anything.''
While Williams played it cool for the media, a source told the Sun-Times that not only is Williams feeling good about the prospect of Mannywood on the South Side, but the GM, "is pushing all his chips on getting Manny Ramirez.''
Not only to help give the offense a presence, but Williams likes the message that it sends to his team this time of year - "that the race isn't over until he says it's over,'' the source said of Williams' thought process.
But there are still some breaks that have to fall the right way for the Sox. If the Dodgers do 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 still veto the move to another team because of his full-no trade clause, forcing the Dodgers to pull him back.
That's why Williams wasn't blowing up "Manny being Manny'' balloons just yet.
"Well that's a Jerry Reinsdorf question that we will probably revisit if and when someone goes on the waiver wire that may get to us,'' Williams did say of taking on the extra salary. "I think the assumption is for everyone out there that just because something moves across the scroll of your television that that is the truth. I'm not going to confirm or deny it, but I will say a lot of times names are being put out there that have gone through waivers or are going through waivers, and they have not in fact been put on waivers. I guess it's just the nature of the beast, and I will answer any question you guys have on it, but I won't answer them directly.''
That's never a problem for his manager, however.
Ozzie Guillen was asked flat out if he would want Ramirez added to the mix, and didn't hold back.
"I don't know,'' Guillen responded. "Manny hasn't played in the big leagues in a little while. If Kenny asked me if you need Manny or do you want Manny here, I'm going to say yes because you know why? He's going to bring him anyway. Then why not?''
As far as if Guillen could handle the free-spirited Ramirez?
"I can handle anyone,'' Guillen responded. "I don't have to handle the players. The players handle themselves. I've had players who have come to the ball club 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 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.''
As Guillen point out, another sticking point could be Ramirez's famous dreadlocks. Reinsdorf has a strict policy about hair, even coming down on Joe Crede and A.J. Pierzynski early in the 2006 when they went grunge post-World Series.
"I want to see how Jerry Reinsdorf is going to confront the hair,'' Guillen said with a laugh. "It ain't going to be my f------ department.''
Guillen did make it clear that if Ramirez did join the mix the slugger would follow his rules or "he won't play.''
But "Manny being Manny'' was the least of Williams' concerns.
"Listen, I'm a byproduct of someone giving me a second chance,'' Williams said. "So is the manager and a lot of these players. And we've had success by bringing them in and putting our arms around them and telling them, 'Who amongst us doesn't make mistakes here and there? Who amongst us doesn't have a period of time we wish we couldn't take back.' These guys are just doing it on a public stage.''

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This page contains a single entry by Joe Cowley published on August 24, 2010 6:05 PM.

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