Thursday, March 14, 2019


Now that Manny Machado won't be a Yankee for the foreseeable future (and hopefully never is) I don't have to hold back anymore. Fact is he's a Padre and he's also in my neighborhood for the next couple of weeks until spring training is over. Until that happens, the media here is just going to keep pumping out the Machado headlines because he will continue to make himself be the center of attention.

He calls himself a villain, he's given himself that role after making mistakes that have led to regrets. He did make a lot of mistakes.

Even if baseball fans want to look past the "I'm not Johnny Hustle" comments there is still no changing the mindset of other players in the game like Christian Yelich. It's hard to just forget the play where Machado spiked Jesus Aguilar, and Yelich made it clear he won't. He went as far as to say "He's a player that has a history of those types of incidents. One time is an accident. Repeated over and over and over again, you're just a dirty player. It's a dirty play by a dirty player. That's what it is. I have a lot of respect for him as a player, but you can't respect someone who plays the game like that." That is probably one of the worst consequences for anyone. When you lose credibility with people it is a hefty price to pay.

So yes, Machado has earned his villain status and he wants all of us to believe it doesn't bother him. I'm not buying it though, the New York Post ran THIS story here days ago and it is still all over media coverage down here in cactus league territory almost a week later.

"I always will be the villain, no matter what. I don’t know why. That is just stuff I have to deal with and I have been okay dealing with that situation. That doesn’t bother me."

I just don't buy it. He does know why. Machado has obviously lost the respect of some of his peers and even if he did get the last laugh this winter it hurt his free agency. He didn't sign until spring training was already underway. For a short amount of time he had the most lucrative signing in baseball until Bryce Harper stole his thunder. He got his payday....but even he admitted it wasn't the deal the deal he was thinking of because the Padres "weren’t the first choice, obviously. They weren’t in the picture at the beginning." 

Yankee fans can and probably will speculate that we were the first choice. Countless media sites called us the "favorites" to get him so with that kind of hype must come with some level of disappointment for him. Machado still says the assumption that he wanted to be a Yankee is "very incorrect" and he should say that now. In the end, he should be looking forward because the Padres were the ones to offer the insane contract and they definitely "showed me the love" as he put it. It's time for him to appreciate what he has and stop thinking about the Yankees. Most people would agree though that the Yankees were the dream. It was closer to home, and was the perfect fit that never happened.

So maybe now disappointed Yankee fans and Machado can finally turn the page. What's done is done. Maybe Machado is finally starting to realize that. "I have done some pretty dumb things. I am not going to lie. I see the things I have done. And I have done some dumb things. At the same time, I have done things that get blown out of the water and suddenly I am that guy. At the end of the day, I play baseball and I don’t let anything else get in my head."

But let this get into your head, the end of the day you are a baseball player that didn't get your first choice. You got a huge contract but you could've had your first choice if you made better choices. You could've been in control of your own destiny. Now you will have to work hard to change the perception that you are a villain instead of building a legacy. You labeled yourself. The world will watch and see if you can overcome that.

Let that one sink in.

--Jeana Bellezza-Ochoa
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @nyprincessj

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