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Stats & Data

June 08, 2009


These days, going to a baseball game isn't what it used to be. Seldom will a pitcher throw into the 7th inning; the score is usually 7-6 or 10-9; and your favorite slugger is likely to hit one, if not two balls, out of the park. The game is shamelessly jacked up on HGH, and its obvious. The best hitter (Bonds) and pitcher (Clemens) of our generation used it, and more players are getting busted by the day (A-Rod, Manny). However, most fans don't care. They still go to the ballpark. That's because baseball, and pro sports in general, is merely another form of entertainment.

It's like seeing your favorite comedian perform stoned. You know he's on something, but you look past it, eagerly waiting for that one hilarious joke that'll make the bumbling and stumbling worthwhile. I saw Darryl Hammond do stand-up in New York some years ago, and although he was tanked (I'm talking, TANKED. He could barely walk up to the stage.), he still did a spot-on Bill Clinton impression. It's the same with sports - even if fans didn't approve of Bonds' off-the-field behavior, they still got out of their seats when he took one deep. The bottom line is, America just wants to be entertained.

Colin Cowherd said the other day we can't be moralists when it comes to baseball. He's right. We aren't going to catch every single steroid user. That's impossible, like Operation Iraqi Freedom. Since we can't catch them all, we might as well stop trying. If Bud Selig and George Mitchell continue this "we can do it" nonsense, there will be no star players left in the game, period.

And yes, I mean EVERY STAR PLAYER. It's naive to think Manny and A-Rod are juicing, yet the other guys at their level, who are constantly striving to compete with them, aren't. The one player who I can safely say isn't juicing is Ryan Theriot of the Chicago Cubs. He's thin and French. The guy plays by hustling. He's old-school. Besides "The Riot," everyone else is injecting their buddy in the buttocks.

Manny getting voted into the All-Star Game would be the fans' way of saying, "Juice on." And I hope he does, because that would be a huge slap in the face to Bud Selig. Bud, look at the past seven World Series matchups. In each one, I can give you either a proven or probable steroid user: Ryan Howard, Manny, Pujols, Clemens, Beckett, A-Rod, Bonds. Not only is baseball allowing players to juice during the season, they're also ensuring an entertaining championship by making sure certain juicers get a chance to play for a ring. Or a WBC trophy. Which is fine with me, not because my morals are low, but because I'd rather watch baseball than see a movie or go bowling.