Tuesday, July 2, 2013

A Brief And Obvious Point About Alex Rodriguez

A Liar And A True Yankee
If you don't think that he'd come back from his latest injury, then retire before MLB can suspend him as part of the BioGenesis scandal, and thereby set himself up for sticking the Yankees for the remainder of his overblown contract...

Well, um, why exactly are you giving any benefit of the doubt to a man who has been shown, repeatedly, that he's lied about PED usage?

You see, that's why PED usage in sports still matters, even though you can make the argument that LASIX is as much of a cheat, and that the only difference between the modern cesspool of moral degradation and ancient times is access. Jim Bouton blew the cover of the use of speed ("greenies") with "Ball Four" before I was born, and I'm startlingly old for anyone filling a sports blog every day. If you don't think Ty Cobb and Pete Rose would have been shooting human growth hormone into his eyeballs between at bats for an edge, you know nothing about Cobb or Rose. And so on, and so on.

It's not the drugs. It's the lying.

Rodriguez is a liar. Documented. Serial. To his teams, to his fans, to his family (remember the tabloid joy over his tawdry divorce).

That still matters.

Hopefully, it always will.


snd_dsgnr said...

Just throwing this out there, but he's only a liar because our society clings to a (naive?) notion of the "sanctity of the game".

Personally, I'm not all that inclined to care. There's any number of medical advantages that modern athletes have that earlier generations don't have, and there will come a day when we are able to genetically tailor offspring to have the best possible traits. How do you compare eras then?

Admittedly part of my indifference might be that I do not now nor have I ever cared about baseball. Records in football and basketball aren't as sacrosanct. Would anyone other than a Cowboy homer try to argue that Emmitt Smith was really the best RB ever? Would anyone, full stop, make the argument that Karl Malone is the second greatest scorer in NBA history?

DMtShooter said...

Cheating matters. Lying matters. If you'd cheat the game with PEDs, if you'd cheat your opponents by corking a bat, if you'd cheat the hitters with spitballs and doctoring the ball...

Well, is there any difference between that and cheating the general public by throwing the game?

Corruption is corruption. Cheering it doesn't make you hip or modern or wise or dashingly cynical and whatever the opposite of naive is.

It makes you corrupt.

Just because baseball has irritating number fetishists and Who's Best debates doesn't mean they deserve a crooked game.

snd_dsgnr said...


I guess I'm not really trying to let cheaters off the hook (I'm certainly not an ARod or Yankees fan), so much as I'm arguing that the point has been reached where we should just accept that PED's are going to be part of sports. Pull them out of the shadows, get them administered by real doctors, make them safer.

Anonymous said...

I quite agree with both of your view points. With the Tour running now, PEDs are very much on my mind. I doubt any sport has had as much PED use as persistently as bike racing. Armstrong's biggest crime was his relentless aggression, not on the road, but in media and court against anyone who spoke what turned out to the truth about his rumored, then confirmed, PED use. But, Shooter, I have to say that it is naïve to expect ARod or Armstrong or anyone else to admit PED use when they know such an admission will cost them millions. It is equally naïve to think that testing will eliminate PED use. So are we then corrupt if we continue to enjoy sports, knowing that PED use is inevitable? Or are we just being realistic or mature and accepting that there are things beyond our power to change, so we shrug and watch anyway?

DMtShooter said...

Loving the conversation. Let me answer both in turn...

Accepting PEDs to be part of sports pretty much means that you have to make them mandatory; otherwise, anyone who isn't taking the needle is clearly selfish and should be cut. I'm not sure I dislike any athlete, even A-Rod, so much as to make him endanger his health with beta crap to play the game.

Just because it's hard to find corruption doesn't mean we get to quit trying. Since if you quit trying, you become part of the problem. A big part.

As for the point that we're corrupt for liking sports even if they involve cheats... well, modern life requires compromises on a lot of things. When I watch Chris Paul throw a lob to Blake Griffin or DeAndre Joran and watch them turn basketball into violent poetry, I'm indirectly putting money into Donald Sterling's pocket. I have to endure that to watch NBA hoop. And Sterling is just one of dozens of team owners in MLB, NFL and NBA that I wouldn't pee on if they were on fire.

But there's a difference between putting indirect cash into the pocket of an entrenched scumbag and helping to destroy the suspension of belief that is required to enjoy any form of entertainment. No one watches a game, sees a big play, and thinks about PEDs.

That only comes later.

And if it does come for you before, and you watch anyway... well, you and I are just wired really differently.

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