Monday, February 09, 2009

A-ROD, MLB's Newest Scapegoat

Well. Beseball Phenom Alex Rodriguez has just admitted to, and apologized for, using steroids during his stint with the Texas Ranger, from 2001-2003. His primary apology is to the Rangers organization and to the Rangers fans. Hmmmm. So on the strength of this confession, the hysterics about A-ROD's tainted legacy can drop all petense of moderation and kick into full gear.

Witness Rangers owner Tom Hicks, who for one is shocked...shocked! that such a thing was visited upon his pristine organization and that he himself was thus dealt so duplicitously:

I feel personally betrayed. I feel deceived by Alex," Hicks said in a conference call, according to The Associated Press. "He assured me that he had far too much respect for his own body to ever do that to himself. ... I certainly don't believe that if he's now admitting that he started using when he came to the Texas Rangers, why should I believe that it didn't start before he came to the Texas Rangers?"


Ummmm. Okay Tom. Whatevs. Screech all the self-righteous screeching that ye will, and A-ROD can join the ranks of Bonds, Clemens, McGuire, Palmeiro, etc. as big name scapegoats. But as Harrogate has been saying for years, such protests from an MLB owner reek of ridiculousness.

Soon. Oh soon. It will become manifestly clear to far more people than Harrogate and a few others, that Jose Canseco has been the sanest high-profile voice by far on this issue. When Canseco's book first came out, the MLB powers were able to write him off as a disgruntled juicer. Well, he may be disgruntled and he may have been a juicer, but he has still nailed Baseball's proverbial ass to the wall:


In his 2008 book, "Vindicated: Big Names, Big Liars, and The Battle to Save Baseball," Jose Canseco claimed he introduced Rodriguez to a steroids dealer. Canseco, who has admitted using steroids, subsequently said he had no knowledge of any drug use by Rodriguez.

"They are looking in the wrong places," Canseco said in a text message to The Associated Press. "This is a 25-year cover-up. The true criminals are Gene Orza, [union head] Donald Fehr and [commissioner] Bud [Selig]. Investigate them, and you will have all the answers."


When the money was good and the media was ignorant, the Baseball powers, still reeling from the 1994 Strike, had no problem with a practice that led to gaudy statistics and packed stadiums. So please, Readers, don't listen to any of them now when they wax concerned about the "integrity" of the game, or about the dangers of steroid use, or about "the children" who worship these players. Don't believe them, for verily and forsooth, they are the pigs at the trough who only squealed after getting real, real fat.

Harrogate is saddened by the fact that, as an institution, Baseball, a sport which Harrogate grew up loving and which he still on some level deeply loves, has been completely corrupted over the last 15 years. It is time to recognize this, rather than railing against individual ballplayers.

6 comments:

solon said...

This seems to be a very good example of the destructive forces of capitalism. In order for the game to succeed and sustain itself, it needs to be exciting as Americans cannot stand things that are unexciting.

After its labor problems it needed to bring back fans. It did so by selling them corruption. But who is to say no to this? The fans that crave the support? The owners who cannot shake the profit? Or the players who cannot kick their habit because of the money it brings?

It is finally time for the fans to check into rehab. That is the only way in which this ends.

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M said...

One way, H, to recognize the corruptness of the sport is to take away all the titles that those who have admitted to using steroids have received. A-Rod needs to give back the MVP award from 2003, and Bonds needs to renounce breaking Aaron's record, and so on, and so on.

And, I'm sorry, I don't buy the whole "I was young and stupid" that A-Rod is trying to sell. I do believe the guys was pressured into it, probably quite heavily, but the guy is not stupid. He knew what he was doing was wrong, and while I totally agree that the whole sport is corrupt from the management to the fans' desire for controversy and titles, we have to start holding some individuals accountable. And we don't do that by giving people like Canseco book contracts and nationally televised interviews.

As I told C, all you have to do is look at these guys upper bodies in comparison to their lower bodies to know that they are pumping more than iron. This isn't going to change until the fans demand changes. So you baseball fans, stop buying the exorbitant tickets and all the over-priced memorabilia. Demand that the players are given reasonable salaries--and no, $250 million for 7 years is not reasonable. We need to make the game about the game, and not about the money.

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