This is the last one, I promise…

Mike Schmidt and Curt Schilling both stated that the players involved in the steroid era made lots of money and are now paying the price.

Their comments seem to imply that since the players benefited from the steroid era they now must pay back by being denied recognition for their accomplishments.

My point is why should they be the only ones.

Case in point.
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It says the “Great” chase. Not the tarnished or dirty.

Sports Illustrated made tons of cash of the 1998 chase.

Hell they even did this.
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Since SI recognized players that used steroids does that mean this doesn’t count? If so does that mean they should pay for what they did? Maybe they should give me back my 5 bucks I payed for this magazine?

What about the owners?

I bought a ticket to see the Orioles play and saw Brady Anderson hit a homerun. Does that mean that game was a farce? Does that mean Peter Aneglos owes me $15 for my ticket and $8 for parking?

What about MLB itself.

Looking at the guys jacking homeruns in the late ’90s and early ’00s it’s easy to point at pictures of them compared to a few years earlier. But why didn’t we all do the same thing then?

Why didn’t MLB connect the dots? What took so long. Steroids had just turned the NFL on it’s head. It’s not like it was out of the range of possibility.

At the time McGwire and Sosa were called saviors. They helped MLB get back on top after the strike a few years earlier. MLB needed them. That had to play into the decision to sit on their hands and not look too deep into thing, right? Selig was driving that train, so where is he in all of this?

Should he be asked to step down? If the players are gonna pay then everyone should, right?

I don’t deny the steroid era was regrettable, but who is truly to blame?

I say we all are.

So now what?

Lets all agree it was shitty and move on. Baseball is resilient. Always has been. It will weather this storm.

But lets not make scapegoats of the players. Lets not act like we are better. We all enjoyed the summer of 1998, to say otherwise is a lie. Vilifying these men isn’t fair and ultimately hurts the game and it’s legacy.

OK, I have said my peace. I won’t bring it up again… until maybe next year.

-K-

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3 responses to “This is the last one, I promise…

  1. Well, I can say as a 14 yr old, I had no idea they were using such things. In fact, I probably didn’t even know they existed. I thought Mark and Sammy were gods of power. So, yeah, I was let down when I started to learn about all this trash. So from my point of view, they can all sit outside the HOF looking in.

  2. Interesting thoughts; I agree with your overall sentiment – that they should let people in based on achievements because the whole sport allowed it to happen.

    I’d nitpick it this way:
    Sports Illustrated – this is a media outlet that was reporting news at the time. Yes, they didn’t connect the dots, but at MOST that’s bad reporting and you could choose to not spend any more money on their publications. Certainly they don’t owe readers money for missing the underlying story. Considering almost nobody in the media fully connected the dots, I don’t even think boycotting future publications makes sense – because you’d have to do that for everyone.

    Bud Selig – The equivalent wouldn’t be for him to step down or pay money back – it would be to withhold future honors. So keep Selig out of the HOF (this is actually realistic, and I bet will in some way be done by the VC when he does retire). Also, keep in mind – MLB was definitely late to react, but the PA fought tooth and nail to keep testing out of baseball. I’ve always thought the players to be far more guilty.

    MLB execs – I find this particularly intriguing. Again, the equivalent isn’t to pay money back or step down. Nobody has asked the players to forfeit their salaries – they are withholding a career achievement award. You could argue never to vote Tony LaRussa into the Hall of Fame – he has basically admitted he suspected Canseco of taking steroids, yet his job responsibilities actually required he report such suspicions. You could argue not to vote exec of the year for guys who were execs before 2004.

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