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Manny suspended 50 games for performance-enhancing drugs

Model citizen” no more, apparently.

And A-Rod must be giddy as a schoolgirl for the shift in attention.

Gotta say, I’m pretty shocked by this. I suppose I shouldn’t be. But for whatever reason, Manny’s always been one of those guys I just presumed had never juiced. He just seemed too natural of a talent, too hard a worker, just didn’t seem like the type. I dunno. Maybe I was naïve. Maybe I had simply convinced myself.

But as we’ve learned over the past few years, there’s really no such thing as a type. All kinds of guys, at every level of the game, are getting sullied by this, and he, apparently, is the latest.

But this is huge. Another first-ballot Hall of Famer. But this time — rather than being outed by some sports scribe’s shoeleather reporting — he flunked the test outright.

How could he be so dumb?

More to the point: what precisely is the banned substance, and when will we find out? Will Carroll says it’s not steroids.

Is there any possible way on earth, at all, whatsoever, by any stretch of the imagination, that Scott Boras could maybe, perhaps, just maybe, be telling the truth? That the drug was legitimately prescribed “by a doctor for a medical condition”?

And if he’s really got an excuse — something, say, along these lines — why isn’t he appealing?

If he is guilty, how long has this been going on?

Could this be the trigger point for more bad news in re: Sox players current and/or former? Or more of those 104 names? At this point I’ve just got to steel myself for the fact that other shoes could soon be dropping.

Damn.

I used the be the hardest of hardcore Manny defenders. (Just ask Phoenix cleaning guy Pat D, who, well, wasn’t.) But it’s true: all that bullshit on his way out of town last summer — and all the needling aftermath — have soured me on him. This, if it is indeed what it looks like, is just another kick in the teeth for a Boston fan base that worshipped the guy for seven and a half seasons.

Still, with all due respect to my former colleague Dan Kennedy, I don’t love this. It sucks.

Xavier Paul, this is your moment!

But I gotta wonder now if the Dodgers are still gonna “run away with this thing.”


UPDATE: Manny's statement.

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