MLB owes Manny Machado an apology

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Labeled and often misunderstood, Major League Baseball and its fans owe San Diego Padres third baseman Manny Machado an apology. Machado is a leader in the clubhouse and is enjoying the best start to a season in his career. He is not a villain, and it is time to end the stigma.  

Grittiness. The desire to win.

Things like this are often not considered when evaluating a baseball player.

The emergence of analytics and the numbers behind the game have further complicated the evaluation process for scouts. The statistics and numbers of the game are truly the heart of the sport, but the players are responsible for dictating the digits when it is all said and done. Predicting who will put up these numbers consistently is what can make or break a MLB front office job.

The grind of major league baseball cannot be overstated when compiling numbers. Complacency and laziness are easily attainable as the game, and its grind is maddening to the inexperienced ballplayer. Looking into a player’s psyche is slowly being adopted as franchises attempt to predict which young players will fizzle under the pressure and limelight of advanced baseball.

Scouts would label men they were looking at as “baseball players” back in the day. This title was used to let people know that this player has a desire to be out there each game. These men are ballplayers in every sense of the word. They love the game.

San Diego Padres third baseman Manny Machado is undoubtedly a “baseball player.”

From the artistic-like way he fields a baseball and flips it across the field with ease to how he breezes around the bases after smoking a home run into the stands. Machado is a “baseball player” in every sense of the word. Most fans outside of San Diego have a hard time grasping this concept. Instead, he is booed and labeled a villain by the opposing team’s fanbase. This past week in Milwaukee, Machado was booed relentlessly by the fan base. His 2018 performance in the playoffs against the Brewers was not forgotten.

The skill level for Machado was never a question for fans. His desire and level of enthusiasm were never a problem. In Baltimore (and LA), the young Machado played with an edge. He played the game with a chip on his shoulder, which fueled him each day. Sometimes that fuel provided opponents an opportunity to gain motivation against Machado and his team. A few times, the young player let his emotions get the best of him. In 2018, Machado was overly-aggressive on the base paths. He made some questionable plays, but you cannot question his desire to win.

Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

If you asked the third baseman, I am sure he would describe his game as more relaxed now in a Padres uniform.

Don’t get me wrong- there is a lot of fire left in his eyes. But, the veteran player can now step away and regroup while the game is still being played. This ability has further developed him as a player. If he makes an error or records a strikeout in a key situation, it is possible for Machado to move on.

The player is never bigger than the game, which Machado communicated to Fernando Tatis Jr. last year. The well-publicized dugout scene sent vibrations around MLB, but not in a negative way. Machado earned a lot of credit around the league for his vocal outburst. Tatis may have one of the best skill levels in the game, but he is still a developing player. The elder Machado took it upon himself not to let the shortstop go down a bad path.

This act showed great maturity. It displayed that Machado has indeed grown up. The game is not all about fieriness and playing with an edge. That can only take you so far, and in time, Machado has learned to play even kiel. His actions are more relaxed, and his philosophy of the game is infectious to young players. Machado, a man who was constantly booed, should be praised by fans of the sport. The love and respect he possesses for the game are remarkable.

You will often find Machado speaking to children. He interacts well with the youth, and there is an obvious love from the kids he communicates with. Machado is all about paying it forward, and his love of the game is never in question. Manny Machado plays each day and does so with confidence. The third baseman provides infectious energy to the San Diego Padres, and he is undoubtedly the captain of the team.

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Manny Machado’s goal remains a World Series title. Nothing else is of importance to him. His numbers this season are easily his best to start a MLB season. Machado is playing the game on a whole new level with a focus in his eyes in 2022.

Great players are booed by the fan base of the opposing teams. Machado will likely always generate that kind of buzz when he is on the road. As Reggie Jackson once said- “Fans don’t boo nobodies.” However, some fans do owe Manny Machado an apology. He is not the villain that people label him.

19 thoughts on “MLB owes Manny Machado an apology

  1. Who cares about his past. What, some self-righteous hypocritical Dodger fans? Don’t forget that the same people that want Bauer to come back in the lineup so just ignore them.

    Btw I’m a Dodgers fan and I follow the Dodgers. It was probably best that Manny moved on, but that’s more like the Dodgers problem, not Manny’s problem. Give the guy a break. The Dodgers would love to have him back on the team, secretly.

    Go MM

  2. When he admits he purposely went out of his to injure multiple players, he’ll get an apology. He has matured, I’ll admit that, but that doesn’t erase his shady past

  3. Figures that these ppl hold those grudges and refuse to see that in baseball, as in life, we move on! We learn from our mistakes and bad judgments! It’s on you if you can’t see that and let Manny move on with his career and life! Now, if you want to hold a grudge against someone, hold it against trump, who almost destroyed our democracy, with help from his minions and those that refuse to hold HIM accountable! Manny’s a good guy…move on!

  4. Perhaps you should consider the numerous times he has intentionally tried to injure infielders, and the one time he ended a career (Dustin Pedroia). He’s a thug, nothing more.

    1. Please…. Get over it. People have a tendency to mature as they get older and it’s pretty obvious, that’s exactly what has happened. Manny is able to mentor an athlete like Fernando Tatis Jr., because he’s been there before and now, in the prime of his career, wants to lead by example and maybe help some of the young guys avoid the issues he may have had to overcome. Thank you Manny!

    1. I’m a native San Diegan and a Padre fan since ‘69. I’ve got season tickets and watch him day in and day out. I don’t look at this team with rose colored glasses. I look at them with reality.

      Manny earned his reputation as a dirty player. He’s also earned his “I don’t hustle” reputation. I will say this… he seems to have matured, which comes with age. He is the team leader here, as he should be. Losing a bad reputation is a hard thing to do. He’s a professional and I doubt the booing affects him negatively. No one owes him an apology though. It’s Manny who should be apologizing for his past behaviors.

  5. Coming from Wisconsin… When you say 2018 playoff performance – I hope you aren’t actually talking stats. Brewer fans dislike him from the step on Aguilar’s ankle (2018-game #4). Probably one of the biggest jerk moves I’ve seen in professional baseball. It’s on YouTube – watch the video and tell me this is a good dude. Plus there were other shady slides in that series to break up double plays… I dislike him for these same reasons. He is talented, but villain is kind of a nicer term than he deserves (personal opinion). MLB or anyone else doesn’t owe him anything especially not an apology! 🤔

  6. He’ll be booed in Milwaukee for years to come. You disregard his kicking Jesus Aguilar on purpose, we won’t. F’ Manny Machado

    1. Exactly. He’s a crappy person. The time he yelled at Tatis Jr? We owe him no such apology.

      1. He put Jr in his place ya know why? Cuz he’s a Jr. Manny is the captain. No one is bigger than the game!

      2. Tatis needed to be yelled at and I bet Tatis would agree with that at this time. I believe Manny has made the Padres so much better than they would be without him.

    2. All I hear is waaaaa!!! I guarantee Aguilar has let it go. But thats because hes a grown up. Grow up…

  7. “His desire and level of enthusiasm were never a problem”.

    Are we talking about the same guy? I agree that MM has come a long way with the Padres, but there’s a reason for the long-standing sour sentiment towards him across the league. He has a history of showing lack of focus and lack of hustle.

  8. Machado tried to end Derek Norris’s care twice in the same game. I’ll always despise him for that.

  9. Good article. It is great for a team to know they have a very-good-to-possibly-elite third basemen they can rely on for 10 years. His success this year has brought up the concern that he might opt out of his contract. Does anyone know the details on his opt outs?

    Also, it was great that he confronted Tatis. It is time to consider that Tatis might deserve some or all of the ire that has been directed toward Machado (but for similar and different reasons).

    On this note, Machado has cratered the last 10 games or so, which might be expected in some ways, but how much of this might be related to Tatis being in the dugout? Perhaps he has been there all along, so it is likely a non-issue. But El Nino is, in many ways, likely what his moniker describes. He needs to grow up and mature quickly. Talent alone is not enough. His enthusiasm to play the game aside, a bad/spoiled attitude is toxic to a team.

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