For seven seasons, Manny Machado has painted a flattering self-portrait to be sold this winter for $ 250 million or more at the Free Agent auction. Now, in the National League Championship Series, Machado is cutting off his own masterpiece.
Through his actions and his complacent quotes and grinning expressions, Machado is in danger of lowering his own market price and perhaps even the salary scale for others. Machado's phone should explode as the players yell, "Stop it, you'll make me money as well."
So far, the Los Angeles Dodgers Infielder has been unable to land a grounder, becoming illegally dangerous on second base harsh chute summoned after he had a confused third blow behind him Teller ump refused his request for a "break" and finally started a bankruptcy when he kicked Milwaukee Brewers first baseman Jesus Aguilar in the ankle when he passed over on Tuesday night the first base ran. And that covers the first four NLCS games between the Dodgers and Brewers. The series was chained on Wednesday in two games in Game 5.
Prior to Game 5, Machado was fined a major fine by Major League Baseball for the aguilar incident.
After what many, including me, appeared to be deliberately trying to kick Aguilar ̵
"He is a player who has a history of this kind of incident," said Milwaukee bat Christian Yelich, who is likely to be NL MVP. "Once is an accident Repeated over and over and over again, you're just a dirty player It's a dirty game of a dirty player, and that's just it I have great respect for him as a player, but you can not respect anyone who plays the game like this. "
So many times I've heard a great director say something so direct and damned about dirty play: almost never. For one of the top stars of the game, who says it through a peer – complete with "over and over and over" – is almost unthinkable. Ball players are a club. Machado has found a way to get kicked out.
"It's not a mistake, you do not hit someone like that [by] accident," said brewer Travis Shaw. "You can say it was not intentional, this and that, but it's a dirty game."
Machado's answer did not brighten up any Brewers feathers, but should help the rest of this NLCS rate TV ratings, "I tried to get over him and hit his foot, and if that's dirty, it's dirty "I do not know, call it what you want it to be."
That was essentially Machado's reaction to first base in a playoff game.
"I will not be Johnny Hustle," Machado said. "That's just not my personality, that's not my cup of tea."
The Machado theme is that he always tiptoed in one way or another, always being a diva or a little spoiled brat everyone hoped he would get more and more mature. Years ago, a Baltimore Orioles employee told me, "Wait until another manager gets in here [after Buck Showalter] and then they'll find out how easy it is to deal with Manny Machado."
Since many believed Machado had outgrown such a day. Maybe not. Once Machado was away from Baltimore and away from Showalter – who understood, appreciated and worked with him – the Infielder's feeling seemed bloated as if the closeness to Los Angeles' fame and tremendous immediate wealth puffed him out.
Of course, the worst time for a fabulous player like Machado to show the less appealing parts of his temperament.
"You lose tens of millions of dollars a second if that's the story," said Alex Rodriguez, now an analyst for Fox Sports.
Now Machado has assured that the Manny-and-dirty-play file is being investigated. In June 2014, Machado, who had been upset in a previous game over a hard day, beat Oakland Athletics catcher Derek Norris with his bat twice in the same game with long, reckless consequences. When I saw the game live at the time, I thought it had come as close to a deliberate MLB attack as I had seen. Norris, who had left the game, later said he saw "[Machado] smiling" raining down on him.
Later that day, when a retaliation strike came on Machado's knee, Manny waited for the next seat to pass him, then threw his bat at A & # 39; s pitcher Fernando Abad. Machado's Heav endangered only the third base, but it earned him a 5-fold exposure and a reputation as a hot-headed lightning rod.
Machado has other catchers, including Mitch Garver and A.J. Pierzynski. Machado's answer is as in the Aguilar incident: "That's how I swing [or slide or run to first base]." And he makes it clear that he will not change.
The list of grudges against Machado is at least as long as the American League East. When the Dodgers hit the Red Sox in the World Series, two Boston Pitchers already have a history of starting melees by throwing behind Machado's head (Matt Barnes) and drilling him and then beating him down (Rick Porcello).
Machado sometimes provoked and rarely provoked. It's not about turning a racket, showing an enemy or "Let the kids play". It's about how players in every sport in all epochs have codes about what's dirty for them to survive
Game 4, even respected House Teller Ump Hunter Wendelstedt picked up a piece from Machado, the one for "time" after the Brewers pitcher started his delivery on a 1-2 pitch. Hitler's often do this to rattle pitchers, and stars expect reverence. Wendelstedt squatted behind the plate as Machado waved his arms helplessly and made a third punch in the middle. Previously, Machado had dropped from his shortstop position over some calls in Wendelstein. You can sometimes annoy some people, but when you go across an invisible line, the whole culture is disciplined.
Every October, the MLB playoffs are the ultimate audition for free agents as potential buyers study, what players do well with pressure collapsing, and whether high-stress situations reveal personality blunders that usually remain hidden.
This year Machado is the biggest loser, although he had nine RBI on Wednesday after a big regular season in eight postseason games season with 37 home players.
Seven out of seven years, those of us who have played Machado hundreds of games thought he was a great player with the little annoying mistakes that each of us could have – and outgrow it. As for gaming moments that are dirty, could not that be partly a misguided competitiveness? A week ago, my only limitation on Machado was his demand to be a shortstop, the position of his youth where he is only adequate, rather than playing on the third base, where he is heavenly.
Now I ask myself, "Do I really know Machado?" And how will he work a lifetime contract? And how will he influence team chemistry?
These are exactly the questions that a future employer should not ask.  A good reputation, it is said, takes years to polish, but can be tarnished in no time. Machado sparkled a few days ago. Well, a little less. Think of it as a free lesson – at Machado's expense.
Visit washingtonpost.com/boswell for more information from Thomas Boswell.