Manny Machado knows he’s seen as a ‘villain’ after doing ‘some dumb things’
Manny Machado is embarking upon a new chapter in his career after signing a 10-year, $300 million contract with the San Diego Padres, and the superstar knows doing “some dumb things” in the past means he “will always be the villain, no matter what.”
Much of the controversy surrounding Machado came to a head during the postseason, highlighted by how he came under fire for not legging out a groundout during Game 2 of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ showdown with the Milwaukee Brewers in the NLCS.
Making matters worse, Machado’s attempt to explain himself backfired in spectacular fashion. During an interview, Machado said he’s “not the type of player that’s going to be ‘Johnny Hustle.'”
The unflattering portrayal of his effort level reportedly soured some teams during his protracted free agency, which included the New York Yankees expressing concerns about it.
Machado admits that much of the damage to his reputation was self-inflicted and owns his role in how he’s viewed.
“I’m going to play my game and I am going to go down as the player I am,” Machado told the New York Post’s Joel Sherman. “I can’t control what people think of me. I can’t control any of that. I can only control what I do on the field. I can control how good of a teammate I am. How good of a baseball player I am. I am not going to say that I don’t regret some of the things I have done.
“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.”
Machado appears to be quite happy to land with the Padres, and the team has myriad reasons to be thrilled to have signed him. Perhaps this fresh start will provide the slugger the opportunity to rehabilitate his image.