This is a very old TSN post in 2007 that no one read, because it was one of my first and no one knew I was there.
Boston Red Sox part-owner George Mitchell released a pre-approved list of names today under the guise of abhorred shock. Focus on the names my fellow sheep. Don't read between the lines. Please?
It will only hurt you. Your childhood won't seem as beautiful if you do. It's contagious!
Why am I joking the predictability of MLB? Well, why lose hair or sleep wondering why a sport that plays with a bat and balls has none. Literally.
If you don't believe that ALL of MLB is part of the abuse, then you must believe we are still searching for WMD's in Iraq and not allowing Halliburton to corner the market on oil and technology. That means you are content with the lip service and few obvious names on the roll call. How could ANYONE be surprised about Roger Clemens? Most fastballers throw junk after hurting their arms. Clemens hurt his twice and increased his velocity. That is one old red flag. Mitchell can claim Roger wasn't part of the BoSox then, so why bring his team in on it? If he did, it would further tarnish their recent trophies and rekindle their place in baseball lore of many decades without winning it all. Especially legitimately. Mitchell doesn't want that! Do you see any Red Sox on the list other than one scrub who had a cup of coffee once with them?
It was part of the deal cut to keep the truth from coming out.
Let us review the influx of HGH and all of the other performance enhancing drugs. At the time, baseball was at an all time low in popularity. They were coming off their second strike in a decade, and even blew off the World Series. Many fans claimed they would never return. Owners were nervous, because the fans were making good on their promise with most teams drawing less each game.
Something, they reasoned, had to be done. It was a simple solution. They had lowered the mound to increase offense years before. More could be done.
The first thing that got juiced was the balls themselves. MLB gave a waning, half hearted explanation that made no sense. Tests showed the new balls had up to 15 times more bounce in them than the old balls. It was a start. Next was to ensure the players were strong enough to get the balls over the newly lowered and drawn in fences to the novice fans they were now targeting.
Home runs! That was the answer!
Suddenly, with the juiced players hitting juiced balls, records were being destroyed. Records once earned by natural talent versus natural talent. Now that equation was moot, because who knew who was on what...and more importantly = WHO CARED? Not the novice fans now filling the parks with their kids, their mates and others. Luxury boxes got built fast so one could remove himself from the crowd and watch the game on TV at the top of the stadium for a lot extra. A waiter would get tossed in to attract the cash.
You had slap hitters like Brady Anderson smashing 50 homers from the lead off spot. You had salami bat journeymen, like Kevin Elster, hitting over 40. Everyone was hitting it over the wall. The Wizard of Oz even hit a few after years of hitting hardly any. Washouts like Sammy Sosa bashed over 60. More novice fans came to fill the parks because it looked so easy to hit a dinger, that they could now live vicariously through MLB.
The owners probably pat themselves on the back for this time they may refer to as : THE GLORY YEAR$ (yes, that dollar sign was put there on purpose).
Suddenly, you could pay a left handed junk baller $8 million a year to pitch to one batter a game for 60 games in a 162 game season. You could give A-Rod a quarter of a BILLION! Twice! Yes, times were good.
All owners are as guilty as the players who did the drugs. MLB is the dealer.
They condoned the use, curried to the whims and cashed in on the games degeneration. This includes the President of the USA, George Bush, who owned the Rangers in this era. The Rangers might have had the most famous roster of users too, with Palmiero, Canseco, Elster, Gonzales, and more. To remember Bush promising to rid the game of drugs is hilarious because he is a former drug addict who enabled his roster to use in hopes of wins. The guy makes Tricky Dick look like Gandhi.
There's talk of asterisks now. Many of the media on the MLB payroll (which is 99.9%) will soon say it can't be done so they can continue getting free access to the players and parks. To leave it as is and that history will be remembered. That is a crock, because people today generally don't like to read as much as they used to. Imagine down the road. It won't be better. Most will not know Mark McGuire cheated his entire career. Think of the movie IDIOCRACY. That is the most likely scenario.
Long ago I came up with a solution. It was aimed at Pete Rose, Shoeless Joe Jackson, and Gaylord Perry. Gaylord would've had the honor of being in both. The Hall of Fame, and my idea. The Cheaters Hall of Fame wing. You have the ceremony. When they return for other ceremonies in the future, you have them sit with the crowd. This wing now grows with Bonds, Palmiero, McGwire, Gonzales, Clemens, Sosa and many more to come. It would be a popular side show and lesson to those visiting on what cheating gets you. Even if it was allowed