You may not have noticed this given how little coverage it has gotten, but Manny Ramirez is coming back tonight. If you think that means that the media's hand-wringing and sanctimony about all of this is about to end, well, you're just not familiar with the media's work:
I've never asked Dodger fans for a favor before, but I have one request now: When that first home game comes on July 16, for one night, one at-bat or at least one swing, boo Manny. I'm not asking you to burn your coveted Man-wig, hide the name on the back of your No. 99 T-shirt under duct tape or torture yourself by watching Angels games. All I ask is that if you attend Manny's first home game, you boo. Once, at least . . . Dodgers fans should boo Manny for one at-bat to make sure he knows his actions were unacceptable . . . They need to say to Manny, "We're the ones who pay to watch you, and we demand better."
There are a lot of reasons why newspapers like the Los Angles Times are dying. Most of them are financial. Let us not discount the notion, however, that their insistence of treating both their readers and the subjects they cover like children who are incapable of forming opinions on their own has a little to do with it too.
Has it not yet, at this late date, after all that has happened, occurred to the L.A. Times that people like Manny Ramirez and are willing, no, eager, to overlook his steroid suspension to watch him play baseball?
UPDATE: It's important to note that not everyone at the L.A. Times feels this way. Jon Weisman of the wonderful Dodger Thoughts blog has consistently delivered the win when it comes to Manny Ramirez coverage, and his latest entry is no exception. Note to whoever runs the Times' sports section: Lead with Weisman and relegate everyone else to sidebar links with six-point fonts.