Did you hear? Manny Ramirez is finally coming out of retirement! This moment has been anticipated for a long time and baseball fans could not be more happy. Oh, wait a minute, that's right, it is the complete opposite.
Why on Earth would baseball fans rejoice at the sight of Ramirez? Granted, he had some great years, but boy oh boy did he go out with a bang. Testing positive for performance enhancing drugs...twice? He has got to feel accomplished after that.
Nevertheless, Manny is back in full force and ready to give whatever team is on the public relations ride of their life. But that is the sad part. The Baltimore Orioles, among a few other teams, have actually expressed interest in picking up Ramirez. Now, whether this be a desperate attempt to achieve a winning record, or just a wild publicity stunt, I am sure many Oriole's fans, including myself, would not be pleased with said acquisition.
For most fans are still bitter about the countless years that the Orioles picked up players with promises of success and maybe even that fabled thing that most other teams get. What is that called again? Oh yes now I remember, I believe it is referred to as a trip to the post-season.
Here is a list of five "superstars" that the Orioles have picked up in the past that lead to sheer and utter disappointment:
1. Bobby Bonilla
Bobby Bonilla was a gem for the Orioles organization. Singed in 1995 to a five-year contract, Bonilla looked to help add to a bulletproof lineup consisting of Cal Ripken Jr., Mike Mussina, Rafael Palemeiro and Brady Anderson, just to name a few. After two seasons with the O's, Bonilla was taken out of the lineup due to an injury that resulted from a degenerative hip condition. Needless to say, Bonilla could have been the final piece in the puzzle that would have sealed the Orioles' position as a dominant team for years to come. Having signed Bonilla for five-years, the Orioles were obligated to pay him for the three years where he was inactive.
Fun fact: Bonilla is still payed $500,000 a year by the Orioles until 2015.
Talk about flushing money down the toilet.
2. Javy Lopez
Fast forward to the year 2004. The Orioles sign catcher Javy Lopez. It seems like the record player is stuck again because the O's once more promise success with this new addition. Batting .316 with 183 hits in 579 at-bats in 2004, Lopez was dare I say, catching up to the standards that the Orioles had set. But the sun only shines for so long. The very next season, Lopez only felt the grass in 103 games played. A whopping 47 games less than the previous season. Finally, all seemed lost when in 2006, Lopez played only 76 games before being acquired by the Boston Red Sox mid-season, where he played an astounding 18 games in 2007 posting a .190 batting average. Bummer.
3. Albert Belle
In 1999, Albert Belle became Major League Baseball's highest payed player signing a 5-year $65 million contract with Baltimore. Being only four years after the Bobby Bonilla incident, the Orioles looked to redeem themselves from the hole that they had dug themselves into, both financially and popularity wise. After two seasons, Belle had not posted a batting average over .300 and seemed to be the biggest disappointment yet.
4. Vladimir Guerrero
More than a decade has passed since the embarrassments of Bobby Bonilla and Albert Belle. So the Orioles decided to grab the dog's tail again, just in case the dog decided to change his reaction of biting them. The O's were feeling lucky and decided to sign Vlad Guerrero to a 1-year $8 million contract in 2011. Guerrero actually played for the Montreal Expos. That is how long he has been around. But he wasn't always a big disappointment. Vlad is a nine-time all-star, and an eight-time gold glove winner with a career batting average generally hovering around .320. Not too bad huh? Well apparently he didn't like the Orioles because in 2011, he posted a .290 batting average. Surprising coming from the 2007 home-run derby winner.
...Get it? I was being sarcastic.
Anyways, the worst is still yet to come.
5. Sammy Sosa
The worst has finally come. Slamming Sammy Sosa. The living legend. After many record-breaking seasons, Sosa was traded from the Cubs to the Orioles in 2005. Two years earlier, Sosa was caught using a corked bat in a game that he "accidentally picked up." Completely putting his many years of success behind him, just for a year, Sosa decided to hit .295 with the Orioles and could quite possibly go down as the worst acquisition in Orioles history.
Chicago really missed Sammy Sosa.
By the way. Do they not get sun in the Dominican Republic?
So where does that leave us? Well, the way I see it, if the Orioles pick up Manny Ramirez, there is a slight chance that he could surpass Sosa on the list of awful, terrible, and wasteful acquisitions.
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