Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Baseball Has Sold Its Soul


The above is the headline in the San Diego Union-Tribune...and it would be pretty hard to argue with it. With the outing of the latest steroid list, one has to wonder if the right hand really does know what the left hand is doing in baseball. There is going to have to be some serious damage control between the players union (see Donald Fehr), the owners, the commissioner (see Bud Selig), as well as with other baseball people. Understand, I think that if someone -- A-Rod in this case -- is guilty of doing steroids, it should be known. However, the way that this has all come out and about, with someone leaking his name to the public, while the other 103 names are on some "master list" somewhere (that was supposed to be destroyed) remain concealed...is dirty pool -- it all smells really bad. It would appear that there has been some significant corruption in baseball for some time. The steroids era has certainly tarnished one of America's greatest past times.

So, who should answer for all of this? We haven't heard a thing from the commissioner, Bud Selig. Bud...where are you? I can honestly say...this Bud isn't for you. He has been the so-called "leader" of baseball while all of this has been going down. He has to take much of the blame for all of the corruption that has taken place on his watch. It may be time to clean house...but where does one start? The corruption appears to have filtered throughout all levels of the game. It's pretty sad. Most of the contemporary heroes of the game for the past decade have been tarnished...McGwire, Sosa, Bonds, Clemens, Palmiero, Pettitte, and now A-Rod. Just don't tell me that Griffey Jr. is on the list. His is the one name that I really do not want to see on the list. He is the one who could stand out and be the torch bearer for dignity through this corrupted era. His 600+ home runs need to be legit, so we can have a reason to believe that there is hope for baseball...and that it will not take another 30 years to finally get it back to square one, if ever.

But, this is a people problem. As we know...power corrupts and absolute power, corrupts absolutely. This is an unfortunate lesson we learn from the business world, from world leaders and even in places where it should not happen...with sports, with church, etc. How can we have the millions and even billions of dollars being spent on players and teams in all of professional sports and not understand that it is going to have a decaying influence on standards? People in this day and time believe that they have to do what they can to get ahead, to get an edge...to find the best way to cheat without being detected. In fact, I am willing to bet that most ball players are still on some performance enhancer that is capable of going undetected, be it HGH or something else.

So, with all of this said, I come back to A-Rod. I saw the full interview with Peter Gammons yesterday...concerning A-Rod's admission to using steroids. As many of the talking heads were saying -- what do we believe? How much of his story can we believe? He said he was coming out and telling the whole truth and nothing but the truth -- but...it just appeared to be some seriously well-orchestrated spin doctoring by his agent and PR people. The biggest point (of contention), among many, with A-Rod's disclosure should be with regard to his statement..."I do not even know what performance enhancers I was using." How could anyone believe that this man would not know precisely what he was putting into his body(?). One would not be so foolish as to believe that he did not know exactly what he was doing and exactly what he was taking.

So...this is another sad chapter that comes a week before pitchers and catchers report to spring training for the 2009 season. To be honest...like so many others...I am irritated about it all (in case you couldn't tell :-). All we are going to be hearing about throughout spring training and the entire season is -- steroids...and who is on the list, who is not. It would be wonderful it all the negative would go away, but it won't -- it can't. So, the best thing to do is...just sort it out. Enjoy the positive when it is present...ignore as much of the negative as possible. Blessings,


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