Just in time for spring training, the greatest time of the year for any baseball fan (except for Opening Day, because for just a moment anything is possible. Just ask Tampa Bay) Alex Rodriguez has been shamed into coming clean, literally.
It's been everywhere, except the Home Shopping Network, in the last three days, A-Roid is a cheater (technically was a cheater) using steroids while a Texas Ranger from 2001 through 2003. His conversation Monday night with ESPN Peter Gammons was a little more self-serving than I would like, but I have to be honest, I've never warmed to A-Rod in pinstripes.
I never really cottoned to Roger Clemens as a Yankee or to Randy Johnson, either. For a guy who owns zero % of the most storied sports franchise in the history of the planet, I'm very persnickety as to who wears my colors.
I'm not even sure I actually care if he, or any of these guys are, or were, juiced. All sports are more entertainment of the bread and circuses variety now than a Sport with a capital "S". The line between MLB and WWE is thin at best, and I'll give the WWE operators this: they never pretend to be anything they're not.
To underscore how screwed up this all is, Curt Shilling, the blowhard and/or savior of the Boston Red Sox (another guy I don't like but for three reasons: he beat the Yankees as a Diamondback (twice in the same Series); he beat the Yankees in a miracle start to get the Red Sox to the Series and he announced when he was a free agent he'd sign with anyone, except the Yankees) wants all the names of all those who were tested (and popped positive) in the earlier part of this decade to be publicized and I agree with him.
I'll also point out that a recently-retired teammate (of Curt's, NOT mine) Sean Casey, raised a really good point when he wondered how Sports Illustrated who 'broke' this story Sunday afternoon, got their hands on the secret and confidential results. The dirty and honest answer is because somebody sold those results to the magazine for thirty pieces of silver, or whatever the going rate is these days.
So while we're all wringing our hands and tsk-tsking A-Roid (I like that, I really do) for being a 'bad role model' (is there an endorsement deal for a bong riding on this? I think not) which is NOT what he signed ten year contracts to do, let me make this niggling point about how cheaters never prosper. Yes, A-Roid is a disappointment as are all of the professional (and other) athletes who use chemistry to better themselves. However, Sports Illustrated and all practitioners of checkbook journalism are no better than the freaks whose antics they report.
What if Damon Runyan huffed? What are the chances of that and what would that mean for two hallowed American traditions? We'd need the intercession of the Madonna--no, Alex, the other Madonna.