September 28, 2005

And the witchhunt continues: ESPN's Darren Rovell goes after former slugger Mark McGwire for not becoming a national spokesman against steroid use.

posted by wfrazerjr to baseball at 12:23 PM - 62 comments

In all fairness, Congress weighed McGwire...he weighed the same as a duck...and therefore he is made of wood, and a witch. So burn him. "do you want to know the truth, or do you want to see me hit some more dingers?" Like it says in the article, it would be difficult for him to become the spokesman for something that he denies or won't discuss. I suppose he could go: "kids, don't do steroids...they are bad for you...trust me, I may or may not know this based on things I won't discuss." Not too effective. But he could bankroll some (more) of the anti-roid stuff if he wanted to do so. How effective of a spokesperson can you be when you are one of the poster boys for better living through chemical enhancement? Allegedly.

posted by chris2sy at 01:08 PM on September 28, 2005

Well, all I have to say is so much for innocent until proven guilty. McGwire is acting like and pansy and should stand up and say yes or no to the question, but Barry Bonds told a grand jury he did not do roids and then was caught using the "cream." Now it is funny that a poll taken of the HOF voters showed that they would not vote Big Mac in but they would vote Barry in. Makes no sense. At least Mac isn't a prick of the highest order, but that is neither here nor there. Obviously the public doesn't care about steroids or Barry would be gone. (he is the one who touched of this firestorm in the first place). Everybody has to have something to complain about.

posted by mcstan13 at 01:25 PM on September 28, 2005

Please don't tar and feather the greatest baseball player of all time. Barry has the world's sorest and longest-suffering knees. That's why he needs to rub "the creme" and flaxseed oil into his biceps -- to cure the arthritis in his knees. Barry doesn't need steroids, his power is 100% au naturale. And the fact that Barry had never hit a home run longer than 450 feet before the 2000 season (when he turned 36) and since then has hit at least 21 homers of 450 feet or longer -- hey, that's just a pure coincidence. Just think how much more power Barry would have if his poor knees weren't sore. Think about it. That is all.

posted by the red terror at 01:36 PM on September 28, 2005

Has he tested positive? No? There must be a way around the tests then... I mean there has to be a way otherwise Barry is the best player in the history of the game and that can't be... I'm startin to panic here... The guy's an ass he can't be the best ever, there's gotta be an explanation he must be on roids... don't know how he manages to pass the tests though. I can do sarcasm too.

posted by tron7 at 01:48 PM on September 28, 2005

admission is as solid a fact as you will find.

posted by garfield at 02:15 PM on September 28, 2005

tron7 - There are drugs created everyday that cannot be tested for. Plus, Barry has admitted to steroid use. All I have to say is that look at the stats and the pictures. I am not saying that Barry is not a great player, but look at this site http://www.jockbio.com/Bios/Bonds/Bonds_bio.html. On the side bar look at the 1986 and 1990 baseball cards of him. Then look at the 2001 ESPN the Magazine cover. Unless I am going blind, he filled out faster than a teenage girl on prom night. Plus, look at the stats: http://mlb.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/stats/player_locator_results.jsp?playerLocator=bonds His earlier numbers were solid but generally inconsistent and not staggering; until 2001 when they EXPLODED. Now I am not saying that he did or he didn't but look at the evidence an tell me what you think. P.S. terror, I thought the sarcasm was great, you had me going for a minute.

posted by mcstan13 at 02:16 PM on September 28, 2005

McGwire's eternal punishment will be all the other HoFers snickering behind his huge pimply back. For a big softie like Mac, it'll be like 20 years at Leavenworth.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 02:28 PM on September 28, 2005

How is this a witch hunt? Mark McGwire didn't have to pledge before Congress and the world that he'd be redirecting his personal charity towards the issue of steroid abuse. The fact that it was an empty promise seems worthy of reporting. What a piece of work that guy is.`

posted by rcade at 02:38 PM on September 28, 2005

McGuire can be considered innocent until proven guilty, true. But how can he sit in front of the leaders of this country and say "I can't answer that" over and over again without looking and seeming guilty? How is that speaking against the problem of steroids going anyway? Where has he spoken against it so far? Near you? Nope! He believes that crawling into the woodwork is going to make people forget him. Sorry ain't going to happen. As far as that idiot Bonds, why and how did he end up in this post? Red Terror, "Barry doesn't need steroids, his power is 100% au naturale". While that may or may not be true {guess We will never know for sure}, then why would he use the stuff anyway and why would he lie later about it? I am not, nor ever been a fan of the self-involved ego-maniac known as Bonds. He gives no reason to like him and hasn't since he was a skinny kid with the Pirates. When the bulk came, so did the attitute. I would hope and prefer that when We speak on posts about other players from now on, We can keep the riff-raff such as Bonds out of it. But then I wonder who We would talk about then.

posted by melcarek69 at 02:49 PM on September 28, 2005

Selig could clean up the game if he wasnt an idiot! Users should be banned for life on the first offense and have all of their numbers erased from the books, like they never even played in the majors.

posted by God of Thunder at 03:32 PM on September 28, 2005

AMEN Brother!

posted by melcarek69 at 03:36 PM on September 28, 2005

How about guys who have been caught scuffing baseballs? Same punishment?

posted by tron7 at 03:41 PM on September 28, 2005

I've never seen a ballplayer put in jail for scuffing a baseball, but I sure have seen many drug users put in jail for the offense. So my question posed would be, why aren't these guys? I understand that it's not the hard drugs such as Cocaine but when all is said and done, this is still drug use. So as far as the question of scuffing balls, maybe. The guys using, DEFINATELY! Sports don't need either of those types of cheaters or any other for that matter.

posted by melcarek69 at 03:49 PM on September 28, 2005

Then alchohal's a drug too. And I'm pretty sure alchohal has hurt more people than steroids. Why don't you climb on your soapbox for prohibition? Throw steroid users in jail? For what? They haven't hurt anyone but themselves and some baseball fan's pride in the game.

posted by tron7 at 03:58 PM on September 28, 2005

I've dragged that vampire Selig's name through the mud for years, but have to give him a little credit. In April, Selig called for a 50-game suspension after an initial positive test, a 100-game ban for second-time offenders and a lifetime ban for a third violation. Currently, a first offense carries a 10-day ban. Players union head Donald Fehr offered Monday to accept a 20-game penalty for first-time steroid offenders. So Selig is trying to push hard, but the players rep is resisting. WHY? Do the players really want to protect the cheats amongst their ranks? Today former great Lou Brock praised Selig's drug policy before congress.

posted by the red terror at 03:59 PM on September 28, 2005

Alcohol has certainly damaged a lot of lives, but there are a couple crucial differences between a bottle of Jim Beam and steroids. The obvious one is that alcohol is readily available for purchase everywhere, and steroids are illegal everywhere. I have also yet to see studies that demonstrably prove alcohol -- or cigarettes -- or mary-jane -- are performance enhancing drugs the way stanazonol or HGH is.

posted by the red terror at 04:03 PM on September 28, 2005

First off if I were McGwire I probably wouldn't be saying much either. Look at the way the media has ripped him since march, mind you these were the same people who kissed his ass in 1998. Who does this Darren Rovell think he is? Did he just mark a calendar and wait six months to say, HEY LOOK OVER HERE Big Mac hasn't done this or that? The end of that article says something about a charity fund trying to get McGwire's help, This idiot's article probably did not help them out very much with that. Just one more question out of humor, is alcohal, hol's brother?

posted by jojomfd1 at 04:22 PM on September 28, 2005

Hey I'm all for alcohol being illegal myself seeing as I quit drinking years ago. Also as Red Terror mentioned, Alcohol is still legal in this country while Drugs are not and I'm pretty sure 'roids are part of that catagory. All these things smoking included {which I am a smoker} are harmful in many ways often to the extreme, but the one that is very Illegal is the juice. We don't know who the past users were, but We do know who they are now. That's unfortunate due to the fact that many used something then too. Babe Ruth was a monster alcoholic and that may have enhanced his play, but what can you do. My point being is that there is, was and never will be a soap box installed before me with this subject. Just knowing the difference between what's right and what's wrong is all anyone needs.

posted by melcarek69 at 04:22 PM on September 28, 2005

There is no witchhunt its a cheater hunt and Baroid Bonds and the rest of them out there are just that. I think they should erase every cheaters stats and ban them for a season on first offense that will fix this. Oh the poor lier didn't know they were roids- yeah right did you get out of elementary school? You buy that roids only hurts players well that is about as ignorant as it gets. Shame on you.

posted by T$PORT4lawschool at 04:27 PM on September 28, 2005

Here's something else to think about when it comes to Bonds. He had never broke over 50 HR before he broke the record. His career high was 49. What a coincidence. Talk about a career year.

posted by aztlan78 at 04:35 PM on September 28, 2005

Now it is funny that a poll taken of the HOF voters showed that they would not vote Big Mac in but they would vote Barry in. Makes no sense. Well if some sense is to be made here it is: McGwire was a one dimensional player his entire career. He hit for power but never a high average and played below average defense at first base. Bonds on the other hand is, well at one point was, a five-tool player, as evidenced by the gold gloves, stolen bases, and a high batting average, not to mention the ridiculous strikeout-to-walk ratio. My point is that if you were to cut Bonds HR total in half he is still a Hall-of-Famer. If you cut McGwire's HR total in half his name probably doesn't find its way to a ballot. Users should be banned for life on the first offense and have all of their numbers erased from the books, like they never even played in the majors. Who is a user and who isn't? Drug testing is always behind the drug user and many users will never be caught. So how do you decide which guys numbers to erase? If you want to use a failed drug test you are giving a free pass to everyone who played before testing was put into place. McGwire was never caught so his numbers stand - Palmeiro was caught so he is out. Tough agrument to make because in all honesty we have no idea who the "users" are.

posted by bigrobbieb at 04:47 PM on September 28, 2005

To clarify some of the pretty wildly inaccurate statements in this thread, steroids are, in fact, legal. They're used everyday by doctors all over the world. Steroid use by non-licensed people is illegal. Barry Bonds has never failed a drug test in his career. He's also a far more complete ballplayer than Mark McGwire ever was. McGwire was, by many accounts and my own beliefs, a steroid injecting freak show, that's why he refused to comment and why he's not going to go and be the poster boy for anti-steroid campaigns. He's well aware that it would make him an incredible hypocrit. But also keep in mind that steroids weren't banned substances when he was playing the game. Now they are but people don't and won't realize that he played under a different set of rules and regulations. T$PORT4lawschool, who are "the rest of them out there"? Anyone you think has used steroids? Nice litmus test. Because they fail a drug test? What about the people that game the piss test? What about people that have false positives (as is inherent in any testing procedure)? Do they get banned immediately and then have to fight their way back? The slippery slope gets very steep really quick.

posted by fenriq at 05:02 PM on September 28, 2005

Rcade, the article says McGwire did have his charitable organization's head redirect some funding. I think the main problem is that by the time the Congressional hearings took place, Big Mac had already pulled out of the public eye for good. It's his choice how he wants to help fight steroid use, and if it means writing checks, so be it. Yes, that's not the same as being a "national spokesperson," but so what? Some grandstanding politicians backed him into a corner and he folded. I notice they, along with MLB, aren't exactly beating his door down to follow up on his pledge. I highly objected to these hearings at the time and I still do. Whether McGwire cheated or not is utterly irrelevant at this point because no one can back and do tests to prove it one way or the other. And even if he did take steroids, why should he be forced into divulging information like that before Congress? What business is it of theirs? What proff do they have to be accusing him? Can I call a Congressional hearing and randomly ask elected officials about their pasts, or insinuate that they like kiddie porn and beating old people? What's the difference? Am I saying McGwire didn't do steroids? No, I'm not. I highly suspect he did. I'm just wondering why our Congress gives a flying fig about it, and why it's any of our business. Oh, and I'm really sorry for the teenager who committed suicide after taking steroids. Seriously, I am. But the person most directly to blame for that kid's death was the one on the stand that day railing against professional athletes taking steroids -- his father. I don't think Mark McGwire could have been expected to be in this kid's room telling him not to shoot up ... but his family sure could have been.

posted by wfrazerjr at 05:12 PM on September 28, 2005

Thank you. Let's put some if not more than some of the blame on the people who have the greatest influence on a childs life...The Parents! Blaming a ballplayer or entertainer for the death of a child is scapegoating. Just ask OZZY and JUDAS PRIEST back in the 80's. We can't go on blaming JUST the people in the news. We have to blame the ones who are at the forefront of a childs early life and development. Stop looking for the outside problems and look hard at who is usually to blame.

posted by melcarek69 at 05:20 PM on September 28, 2005

Thank you. Let's put some if not more than some of the blame on the people who have the greatest influence on a childs life...The Parents! Blaming a ballplayer or entertainer for the death of a child is scapegoating. Are you saying Marilyn Manson wasn't the real reason kids were shooting their classmates? I guess it is human nature to attempt to assign blame to any source but yourself. Especially so in the case of a parent who would never do anything to harm their child. Assigning blame to athletes and entertainers has to make life more bearable than having to blame themselves.

posted by bigrobbieb at 05:49 PM on September 28, 2005

And the fact that Barry had never hit a home run longer than 450 feet before the 2000 season (when he turned 36) and since then has hit at least 21 homers of 450 feet or longer -- hey, that's just a pure coincidence. This is almost as good as the "He's got a big head!" approach. Did you know that each stadium has it's own way of measuring home run distance? Did you know that how tight a ball is wound will affect how far it flies? Did you know that Barry uses a different wood for his baseball bats since 2000? Did you know that bat handles (and the overall weight of the bat) are smaller than they have ever been in history? Did you know that comparing just one player's results without showing how it compares to the rest of the league is an abuse of statistics? But hey, I'm sure it's just a purely coincidental you didn't bring up this information when you made your backhanded accusation. You buy that roids only hurts players well that is about as ignorant as it gets. No, it's ignorant to assume that if a player uses steroids, he's hurting anyone else. Nobody else's health is affected. And if you say "What about the children?" and if you think that the biggest influence on a teenager using steroids is the fact that a professional athlete might be using them, that's ignorant. I'm sure such things as peer pressure, poor parenting, or the barrage of television ads that tell him that this drug or that will help him with whatever problem he has, are more influential than some athlete he's never met before.

posted by grum@work at 06:06 PM on September 28, 2005

And even if he did take steroids, why should he be forced into divulging information like that before Congress? Who's forcing him? I think he should divulge information because it would help kids not make the same mistakes he did. Abusing steroids for sport is insane, and countless young athletes do it. I'd forgive the guy if he did one confessional "steroids shrink your nuts and give you cancer" commercial.

posted by rcade at 06:46 PM on September 28, 2005

I'd forgive the guy if he did one confessional "steroids shrink your nuts and give you cancer" commercial. Can you wait a couple more years? There is no way he's going to do anything that might (further) harm his spot in the HOF. Besides, it might seem a bit silly for him to do a commercial like that if he hasn't actually suffered any severe side-effects. "Steroids will shrink your nuts and give you cancer. Well, except for me. I'm actually doing all right, especially with the millions I made during my baseball career."

posted by grum@work at 06:50 PM on September 28, 2005

"Did you know that each stadium has it's own way of measuring home run distance? Did you know that how tight a ball is wound will affect how far it flies? Did you know that Barry uses a different wood for his baseball bats since 2000? Did you know that bat handles (and the overall weight of the bat) are smaller than they have ever been in history? Did you know that comparing just one player's results without showing how it compares to the rest of the league is an abuse of statistics?" Hey- you made alot of good points, and I respect alot of your opinions. But can you honestly tell me that Barry never used any illegal substances? You forgot to mention that he has gotten considerably older since he was in his prime. (not his new prime). You can make a case that many older players are great- eg: Clemens, Franco, Kohnson, Schilling, etc. but rarely do hitters in their 40s gain power in their hitting. (Especially 30 homers a year). Bonds either did some dam good workouts, or he bent the rules a little. Serious- who just trains- then breaks the HR record, and the walks record in one year? Bonds is good- but something is wrong- really wrong.

posted by redsoxrgay at 06:53 PM on September 28, 2005

As one of the Senator's in todays hearing mildly put it " If someone breaks Hank Aarons record, it's not a question of an asterik next to his name, it should probrably be an RX next to his name."

posted by volfire at 06:53 PM on September 28, 2005

I'd forgive the guy if he did one confessional "steroids shrink your nuts and give you cancer" commercial. He'd balance it all out with a Raffy move- Steroids, then do a Viagra commercial. No wonder why Raffy did those commercials..... :)

posted by redsoxrgay at 06:57 PM on September 28, 2005

Senators are so clever.

posted by cl at 08:51 PM on September 28, 2005

grum@work, thank you for your statistics lesson. I know those of us who have taken stats are appreciative. But please let me tell you about statistical significance. Even taking all of those facts you listed into account, there is a statistical significance in the numbers listed. Barry started playing in 1986 and did not hit a 450+ foot home run until 2000. Even at 140 games a season average (which is a low ball) that is 1960 games. Since 2000 he has hit 21. At the same average that is 700 games. Now I am not a statistician but that looks statistically significant to me. You observations are true, but even if you combined all of them, do you HONESTLY believe that they could account for the sudden outburst of power.

posted by mcstan13 at 09:40 PM on September 28, 2005

mcstan13 wrote: Barry Bonds told a grand jury he did not do roids and then was caught using the "cream." This is incorrect. According to leaked testimony to the grand jury, Bonds denied knowingly using illegal substances, but admitted to using products provided by his personal trainer (Greg Anderson). He was never "caught" using anything; in 2003 when he was using, there was no test for the designer anabolic agent in the "clear" and the "cream." Subtle points, perhaps, but it's good to begin your argument with the right facts.

posted by Amateur at 09:59 PM on September 28, 2005

McGwire was, by many accounts and my own beliefs, a steroid injecting freak show, that's why he refused to comment and why he's not going to go and be the poster boy for anti-steroid campaigns. Aside from a book written by a complete turn coat moron, could you cite some of these many accounts for us. I'll take your beliefs into consideration, but I am interested in seeing some of these many accounts.

posted by jojomfd1 at 10:27 PM on September 28, 2005

I find this entire discussion to be silly. The reason kids so steroids is to enhance their chance of going professional in whatever sport they play. This is driven by our society's insistance on paying millions to watch these people play professionally. If you don't understand that this is insanity, the average school teacher nationally earns less than 30k per year. A new serviceman or woman at the rank of E-1 through E-3 qualifies for food stamps if they are married with a child. The real point isn't who is or isn't juicing. The question is why do we idolize these people who in reality, add nothing valuable to the society as a whole except for pitting us against one another when our favorite teams play each other.

posted by Army_MP at 10:53 PM on September 28, 2005

Army MP: The concept is bread and circuses The only reason this article was printed: "McGwire is slated to make his first public appearance since the congressional hearings this weekend, when he will appear during ceremonies commemorating the final regular-season series at Busch Stadium, the soon-to-be-demolished home of the St. Louis Cardinals."

posted by ?! at 11:16 PM on September 28, 2005

Don't misunderstand my feelings, I love a good game as much as any red-blooded American should. I just try to keep myself grounded. Andru Jones testifying about the Gold Club in Atlanta wasn't an important event in my life. McGuire juicing, Jeremy Shockey being homophobic Barry Bonds running for class president. I just think there are better things to talk about. If St Louis wants McGuire to speak who the hell cares. It is only important because we give credence to it. We cant complain about sensationalism when we chase after it like starving hounds.

posted by Army_MP at 11:30 PM on September 28, 2005

grum@work, thank you for your statistics lesson. I know those of us who have taken stats are appreciative. But please let me tell you about statistical significance. Even taking all of those facts you listed into account, there is a statistical significance in the numbers listed. Barry started playing in 1986 and did not hit a 450+ foot home run until 2000. Even at 140 games a season average (which is a low ball) that is 1960 games. Since 2000 he has hit 21. At the same average that is 700 games. Now I am not a statistician but that looks statistically significant to me. You observations are true, but even if you combined all of them, do you HONESTLY believe that they could account for the sudden outburst of power. You didn't read very carefully what I wrote. I said: "Did you know that comparing just one player's results without showing how it compares to the rest of the league is an abuse of statistics?" What that means is, what if the number of 450ft+ HR increased dramatically across the league? What if we found out that during that time (since 2000), Albert Pujols has hit 11 more 450ft HR, Andruw Jones has hit 7, Chipper Jones has hit 3, Adrian Beltre has hit 4, Jim Thome has hit 11, Alex Rodriguez has hit 16, Manny Ramirez has hit 8, David Ortiz has hit 7, Vlad Guerrero has hit 13, Mark Teixeira has hit 5... Maybe "long" (450ft+) home runs have gone up significantly across the board in the major leagues since 2000. But that's impossible to know since the only discrete statistic we are given is that Bonds has hit X number of "long" home runs since 2000.

posted by grum@work at 01:29 AM on September 29, 2005

If someone breaks Hank Aarons record, it's not a question of an asterik next to his name, it should probrably be an RX next to his name." ...because if anyone ever breaks any record in any sport in any way, they must be cheating. Especially if the record was set by a person that was really respected, back in the days. I wonder what they'll say when Alex Rodriguez rolls by Hank Aaron's number in about 7-8 years...

posted by grum@work at 01:45 AM on September 29, 2005

Army_MP: The reason kids so steroids is to enhance their chance of going professional in whatever sport they play. That may be why some kids do so today, but it's not how the thing got started, and high-paying professional sports are certainly not the only driver in the use of performance-enhancing substances today. Remember a country called East Germany? The number of sports where a kid can hope to grow up and make a lot of money is not large. There are plenty of sports where nobody goes pro, and many of these where even the top athletes have no chance of making significant money through endorsements -- yet you still have athletes using performance-enhancing drugs. What all that boils down to is that you may be dealing with the same drugs in baseball as you do in bobsledding, but you're dealing with some very different incentives, therefore different problems calling for different solutions.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 05:46 AM on September 29, 2005

grum> Where do you get that factual information supplied by a baseball statistical company is the same thing as the "he's got a big head" argument? That is an absurd comparison -- one based upon measurable statistics; the other simple petty emotion -- and I do suspect just a little naivete and gullibility and a Pollyannish lack of skepticism. Sometimes when I see fanboys sticking their heads in the sand about this, it reminds me a lot of macho metalhead beerdrinkin' goodoleboys who recoiled in shock and denial when Judas Priest's Rob Halford and Queen's Freddie Mercury were revealed to be gay men. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) Anyone with a Grade 5 education could see pinups of those two guys on their bedroom and garage walls and easily tell for themselves -- like, c'mon, they're practically screaming in your face about their, ahem, closeted lifestyles -- but even after exposure the fanboys stuck fingers in their ears and denied-denied-denied. "Nope, don't wanna hear it. The mascara and lipstick and costumes picked up off the bathroom floor of Plato's Retreat were just for show. And besides, where's the proof, huh? It can't be true. In fact, until you get me clearly visible video and confidential proctology files and dildo's with DNA, it'll never be true. Innocent until proven guilty, and all that stuff." All statistical evidence indicates Barry Bonds had a massive power surge at an advanced age when most athletes have already retired. Your explanations, well, maybe the balls are more tightly wound at the Rawlings factory in Haiti, or maybe the maple trees used to hand craft Barry's bats were struck by lightning and later injected with steroids, seem to me a bit of a reach, especially when more likely and reasonable explanations need to be investigated. Maybe is a freak. Or maybe -- possibly -- perhaps even probably -- there is a much simpler explanation. Maybe Barry is a liar. And maybe all those people who have claimed to have witnessed Bonds' applying steroids and having seen his grand jury testimony aren't liars and perjurers. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, walks like a duck... Ockham's razor, dude.

posted by the red terror at 07:32 AM on September 29, 2005

I just have one question that I'd like someone to answer for me. Steroids are legal if perscribed by a doctor for a medical condition. I don't know what problems call for steroid treatment. However, if a person needs steroids for medical reasons, is he automatically banned from baseball?

posted by drevl at 08:04 AM on September 29, 2005

The quick answer would be that if you're bad enough off that you need to be prescribed steroids as part of your recovery, then playing pro baseball probably isn't at the top of your to-do list. But that's a good question, drevl. I suspect that regardless of what the fine/suspension system winds up being, someone in that situation may come along and challenge it for some kind of exemption & clarification.

posted by chicobangs at 08:14 AM on September 29, 2005

Grum, I too appreciate that you're not be swayed by an obvious agenda to show Bonds as steriod monkey even before any genuine evidence is revealed. But at some point one has to think in terms of Occam's Razor - he is in all likelyhood a big-time juicer.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 08:20 AM on September 29, 2005

grum@work, I would agree with you, BUT McGwire used to crank 500 footers all the time prior to 2000. Therefore it was possible. Also, I have a hard time believing that the basic physics of baseball swayed so dramatically that he went from NO 450+ footers for 14 years to 21 in 5 years. I will agree with your logic on physics when the earth stops revolving around the sun. Also, if Rodgriguez or Pujols or whoever passes Aaron's record without being roided to the hilt I say more power to em. I don't like A-rod, but if he wins it righteously I am all about it.

posted by mcstan13 at 08:54 AM on September 29, 2005

Since A Rod's first full season was 1996 and he now has 428 HR, I'd say he is on track to break it. As far as him being roided, show me a failed test. I am not an A Rod fan or a Yankees fan. I am just tired of congress and everybody else with this "if that record get broke they were juicing shit." Congress has more important stuff to worry about you'd think. If the MLBPA and Selig were smart they'll figure something out really quick. Because I don't think they want to set the precedence of congress passing legislation on how baseball will deal with misconduct, whether it be drug policy violation, or anything else. Once they start where do they stop?

posted by jojomfd1 at 09:55 AM on September 29, 2005

grum> Where do you get that factual information supplied by a baseball statistical company is the same thing as the "he's got a big head" argument? That is an absurd comparison -- one based upon measurable statistics; the other simple petty emotion -- and I do suspect just a little naivete and gullibility and a Pollyannish lack of skepticism. Jeez. You like to skim over what I wrote and just make insulting accusations. I said that having a stand-alone statistic (#HR > 450ft by Bonds) is about as convincing an argument as "he's got a big head". And then, in great detail, I explained why a discrete statistic like that is worthless. Nonetheless, you proceed to ignore the explanation about WHY that statistic (on its own) is useless and launch into some (frighteningly bizarre) analogy about makeup, rock and roll, and gay men. maybe the maple trees used to hand craft Barry's bats were struck by lightning and later injected with steroids, seem to me a bit of a reach, I never said that. I said that he was one of the first players to switch to maple bats in 2000. If you want to have a decent conversation about the topic, don't make silly statements like that. It demeans the rest of your argument and makes it hard to take seriously. But at some point one has to think in terms of Occam's Razor - he is in all likelyhood a big-time juicer. This is the funniest part. I've already stated that I think Bonds used some sort of P.E.D., but everyone assumes I'm some "fanboy" that thinks he's always been clean. My arguments have always been against the accusations based on lousy arguments, weak statistics and lack of real evidence (failed tests = 0).

posted by grum@work at 11:35 AM on September 29, 2005

F'in fanboy.

posted by yerfatma at 12:50 PM on September 29, 2005

However, if a person needs steroids for medical reasons, is he automatically banned from baseball? They're not automatically "banned from baseball" if they take them without medical reasons. A first-time positive test gets you a 10-day suspension, and there is no number of offenses that mandate a player's being banned from the game, although a fifth positive test makes a player "subject to discipline determined by the commissioner" -- which I suppose could mean, five strikes yer out. That aside, though, I went looking for a copy of the policy to see if a medical exception exists and couldn't find it (the policy, I mean, not the exception). In other sports, however (most notably Olympic sports), having a doctor's note buys you nothing. There have been cases of athletes with asthma who had to choose between taking a drug for their condition or being able to compete. The line in Olympic sports is incredibly hard; MLB's regs are very namby-pamby in comparison, and it wouldn't greatly surprise me if you got a free pass based on a doctor's note, a note from your mom, or the dog eating your homework.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 01:21 PM on September 29, 2005

Grum.... I am going to kick your ass in the hockey pool. Eventually, I will have all the statistics supporting this claim. They will be indiscrete and bountiful. :)

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 01:34 PM on September 29, 2005

Occam's Razor would NOT point to Barry being a juicer. Occam's Razor asks which is the simplest answer to a given question. In this instance the question is: How has Barry Bonds hit so many home runs and seemingly gained in strength and power as he's aged? The simplest answer is not that he's injected undetectable steroids for his entire career. The simplest solution is that he busted his ass to keep himself in top physical shape, trained his eye to identify strikes and balls and has phenomenal hand/eye coordination as well as superior genetics for baseball. And don't confuse simplest with most likely, they're not one and the same. Yes, it is likely that Bonds has used steroids, aside from the "clear" but he's not been caught ever using them so leaping to that conclusion involves a logical leap that's not supported by the known facts (not strongly held opinions of his guilt).

posted by fenriq at 01:39 PM on September 29, 2005

F'in fanboy. Oh, it's go time!

posted by grum@work at 01:41 PM on September 29, 2005

So Occam's Razor would suggest that the simplest answer is that Barry Bonds is superhuman? You and I disagree as to the use of this device.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 02:11 PM on September 29, 2005

Bond tested positive, and the HOF would vote him in, but not the Mac? There may be suspicion, but with out proof, are we not innocent until proven guilty? Key word 'PROVEN'. Court of public opinion differs of course. I would hope the HOF would not allow themselves to look like a bunch of asses by letting a known roider like Bonds in the hall, and not Mac. If thatís the case, Rafi Palm is a shoo-in.

posted by KG4MVP at 03:34 PM on September 29, 2005

There may be suspicion, but with out proof, are we not innocent until proven guilty? Yes -- in a court of law, which this is not. I understand your point, but please, let's leave "innocent until proven guilty" out of it. That's a standard that applies to a criminal court, and drug-testing has different standards of guilt.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 03:44 PM on September 29, 2005

Just so I am clear, youíre saying that a known riod user, who has broken MBL record, should be allowed into the HOF, and a player in which there is no proof? or admission? I would hope not, and would like to think that there is still a level of rational thinking in this country that is still capable of seeing the obvious. Players in MBL history have shed blood, sweat, and tears to accomplish their achievements. These Hall Of Famers need to stand up and denounce roid use, and those who have been 'proven' to have used them. As dose every fan of the national pastime. Even if it means shuting Bonds out, hell, they did it to Rose for gambling. Whether he threw games or not, still not 'proven' Different topics, but cheating is cheating.

posted by KG4MVP at 03:57 PM on September 29, 2005

KG, who exactly are you talking to? Whoever it is, I'm pretty sure your rant is misdirected.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 03:58 PM on September 29, 2005

These Hall Of Famers need to stand up and denounce roid use, and those who have been 'proven' to have used them. Just whom might these people be? As dose every fan of the national pastime. Even if it means shuting Bonds out, hell, they did it to Rose for gambling. The fans did not shut Rose out of anything MLB did.

posted by jojomfd1 at 04:31 PM on September 29, 2005

Bond tested positive, and the HOF would vote him in, but not the Mac? There may be suspicion, but with out proof, are we not innocent until proven guilty? Key word 'PROVEN'. Court of public opinion differs of course. I would hope the HOF would not allow themselves to look like a bunch of asses by letting a known roider like Bonds in the hall, and not Mac. If thatís the case, Rafi Palm is a shoo-in. I don't even know where to start with this one. First off reread my original post and get your rant headed in the right direction, then try to get your facts straight. What has not been "proven" about Bonds has been well documented on SportsFi and I won't waste the space repeating it. I should however note that Bonds has never failed a steroid test. The earlier post was just an explanation as to why some Hall of Fame voters would vote against McGwire, while still voting for Bonds. Both players are just as guilty in the court of public opinion and just as clean in actual tests. Palmeiro on the other hand did fail an MLB sanctioned steroid test, which carries a much different significance. Just so I am clear, youíre saying that a known riod user, who has broken MBL record Just so you are clear they are speculated 'roid users who have broken MLB records.

posted by bigrobbieb at 05:38 PM on September 29, 2005

Two things. One: The only known Cooperstown-caliber steroid user at this point is Rafael Palmeiro. Everyone else, including Messrs. Bonds and McGwire, have neither admitted to nor been caught with knowingly taking anything that was illegal when they took it, and while innocent-until-proven-guilty may not legally apply here, North American culture and thinking has adopted it, and I think it applies in these cases. So calling anyone else a "known steroid user" is not really the case. Suspected, sure, hell yes, of course. Known, not so much. Put the torches away until there's some proof. Two: Steroids are not the same as crack or heroin or pot or Viagra or Lipitor, or even protein supplements or other over-the-counter healing salves, dietary aids or ointments. To say "Drugs are bad, mmkay" puts a whole lot of awful things in with a ton of genuinely beneficial, legal and useful tools that a professional athlete uses to stay in the starting lineup over a 162-game season of heavy and constant stress and exertion. It's an easy lie, and I see people doing it all over this thread.

posted by chicobangs at 10:18 PM on September 29, 2005

To say "Drugs are bad, mmkay" puts a whole lot of awful things in with a ton of genuinely beneficial, legal and useful tools that a professional athlete uses to stay in the starting lineup over a 162-game season of heavy and constant stress and exertion. It's an easy lie, and I see people doing it all over this thread. Right, but chico, to be fair, most people who are taking part in this debate now came to it through the presence of "drugs" in popular professional sports...and in the popular professional sports, at least in the USA, there have been a couple of distinct eras of "drug" concern. The early era dealt with illegal recreational drugs; the current era deals with harmful performance-enhancing substances that may or may not always be illegal. These were different problems, people used these drugs for different reasons...but they're lumped together under umbrella "drug policies". Clearly, that's a bad idea: it makes the policy very complex, blurs the issues in people's minds (players, fans, everybody) about why is it a bad idea to use these substances (which substances are we talking about?), presents the league (or whoever) with very different sanctions that they can impose depending on the "drug", and results in exactly the "Drugs are bad, mmkay" reaction that you're talking about. Drug policies need to be simplified, and it would probably be best to not even call them "drug policies". As regards something like MLB, it would perhaps make a lot more sense to have a set of "doing illegal things" policies (from date rape to snorting coke), and a set of "taking banned things that are perhaps good for your batting average but bad for you" policies. Only then are you going to get any kind of clarity of thought from the general public.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 11:34 PM on September 29, 2005

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