Red Sox fan Jeffrey M. Guinee, who launched the Web site, explained his motivation in an interview with the Boston Herald.
"Because of the media there's this undertone that Manny's not wanted here," Guinee told the Herald. "But we think that if the masses were heard it wouldn't even be close. It would be like 10-1 to keep Manny."
It doesn't take much to realize that I'm a huge Red Sox fan. Growing up in Cambridge (a quick jaunt across the river from Fenway) you can't help but know what's going on during baseball season. These days, I may be living a little farther away (ahem), but I'm hooked, so I do what it takes to stay up on the news. I know as well as anyone that Manny Ramirez is a very talented (and above average) major league baseball player. He's served us well during his tenure with the Boston Red Sox, and in spite of the occasional headaches, only a fool would wish him out of town right now. He and David Ortiz are the heart of an already potent lineup, providing protection that allow them to see the pitches Bonds can only dream about. But that's not the point. The point is that Manny being Manny, if he is not happy, and does not want to play in Boston
I don't think he doubts that (most) of Red Sox Nation loves his contributions to the team, but he says he wants his privacy. A website petition isn't going to keep him out of the Boston spotlight, isn't going to give him a chance to go out in public without getting hounded, and basically isn't going to address the issues he's raised. It's a nice gesture, but that's all it is, a gesture. Now it's time to sit back, hold our breath and see how all this plays out. With a little luck we'll see him out there "being Manny" come spring training.