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Manny Is Back - Morning Links Edition

Its been 58 days since Manny Ramirez has played in a game -- it was Blogger Night at Dodger Stadium -- and tonight marks his return in front of a Dodger-heavy crowd at Petco Park.  Here's a look at some news around the web regarding Manny Ramirez and the Dodgers:

Manny's return expected to be a spectacle - MLB - Yahoo! Sports
Bernie Wilson forecasts Friday night in San Diego, which might include more Dodger fans than Padre fans:

"I wouldn’t be lying to say that when he steps to the plate here he’s going to probably feel like he’s at home," said Padres reliever Cla Meredith, who’s been disappointed with the dwindling crowds during San Diego’s dismal season. "There’s no doubt about it."

Dodgers eagerly await Manny's return | News
Ken Gurnick chronicles the Dodgers' reaction to Manny's return, and provides this classic quote from Rockies' manager Jim Tracy:

"Let's face it, it's like acquiring a player in a trade that you haven't had for the past 50 days."

Thanks, Jim!

When it comes to Manny, what would Nietzsche do? - Los Angeles Times
I had the pleasure of meeting Kurt Streeter covering Sunday's Dodger game, and here he has a unique way of looking at the Manny Ramirez situation: by incorporating the works of Socrates, Plato, and other famous philosophers.

"Gentlemen, this is simply a matter of what I long ago called the categorical imperative," chimed Immanuel Kant (Manny-applicable quote: "By a lie, a man annihilates his dignity as a man.").

Glenn Dickey: Ramirez’s return tonight will be greeted with forgiveness by Dodger faithful | San Francisco Examiner
A look at the difference between sportswriters' outrage and fans' acceptance regarding performance enhancing drugs.

There’s a serious disconnect between fans at games and most baseball writers, as well as mostly older fans who watch on TV and revile the "cheaters." The stay-at-home fans revere the records, which I don’t because they’re affected by the vast changes in the game. Pitching records were mostly set in the early part of the 20th century, the "dead ball" era. The hitting records are mostly being set in this era because of steroids, overexpansion, a livelier ball and more hitter-friendly parks, not necessarily in that order

Anyone Think It's Time to Add A Hall of Fame Bat? - Mike Scioscia's Tragic Illness
MSTI points out the reasons why the Dodgers desperately need Manny's bat back into the lineup

Optimist Bell ready for Manny
Chris Jenkins of the San Diego Union-Tribune tells us that Padres' closer and quote machine Heath Bell sees opportunity for the Padres with Manny Ramirez in town:

"I think it's a good thing for San Diego because it'll mean sellouts," Bell said. "We'll be on national television (Saturday), be on the ESPN highlights. San Diego and L.A. are rivals, so everybody gets amped up for this anyway.

ESPN - The B.S. Report
Keith Law joined Bill Simmons to discuss all things baseball, and they both had nice things to say about the Dodgers.  Law stated the Dodgers were the best team in the National League, one that could hang with any team in American League, and Simmons, the well-known Red Sox fan, mentioned he would pick the Dodgers if he were forced to pick a new team to root for.  Also, Simmons called Jonathan Broxton "terrifying."

It's back to the bench for Dodgers' Juan Pierre - Los Angeles Times
Dylan Hernandez reports on perhaps the one Dodger not enthused to see Manny back.

Inside the Shell -- Manny being Manny, being cheap | The Hive
There are reports that Manny Ramirez bucked tradition by not paying for the postgame spread at both of his minor league rehab stops - in Albuquerque or with Inland Empire. If true, that's pretty weak.

Sons of Steve Garvey: Ethier Muscles In On Martin's Yoga Mat Turf
Steve Sax of SOSG details the latest promotion by the Dodgers.

I will be in San Diego tonight in a group of 20 True Blue LA faithful Dodger fans, as we try to bankrupt the Padres in the AM/PM all-you-can-eat section.  If you are there, stop by section 227, rows 10-14, to say hello.