On Saturday Matt Vasgersian of the MLB Network called the news another black-eye for baseball. In an e-mail to New York Newsday that same day, Rangers owner Tom Hicks wrote he was “shocked.”
The news, of course, is Alex Rodriguez failed a drug test.
On Monday, the Yankee third baseman admitted to using a banned substance because he wanted to be among the greatest players of all-time.
Forgive me for not being shocked.
By now, I don’t think anything can shock me, unless it is a baseball player fessing up when caught cheating.
As for another black-eye? Easy there, Matt. This is nothing more than picking at an open wound.
This is the price the game pays for looking the other way during the Steroid Era. The surge in power helped rescue baseball from the 1994 strike. But look at the price.
Barry Bonds, the game’s greatest home run hitter: tainted.
Roger Clemens, one of the game’s greatest pitchers: tainted.
Now A-Rod, the golden boy we always hoped would chase down Bonds and restore some honesty to the game: tainted.
At least A-Rod said he is sorry, though the cynic in me wonders if he is sorry he took a banned performance-enhancing substance? Or is he sorry he was caught?
I’ll give him this: He didn’t insult our intelligence and deny it.
You have to love a stand-up guy.
Of course, you have to question everything he’s done since the 2001 season.
That is the great sin of commissioner Bud Selig and the owners who did not push for drug testing. They ruined the integrity of the game. They made a joke of the record book.
Two years ago we were rooting for Rodriguez to stay healthy and knock Bonds from the top of the all-time home run list.
Now? Like that would make a difference.
We want so desperately to believe in our heroes. That they drink their milk and eat their vegetables and climb to great heights the old-fashioned American way, through nothing more than hard work, sweat and determination.
The little kid in all of us wants to believe in Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy. But these baseball players make it so darn hard.
It is difficult to believe the two greatest players of their generation — Bonds and Clemens — were dirty without there being a third player. Or a fourth. Or a fifth.
Now add A-Rod.
Disappointed? I guess.