Wednesday, June 05, 2013

An Open Letter To Baseball On the Bosch Deal

"So if A-Rod OPSes the same as a duck, he's made of wood"
Dear Baseball:

Please stop being so fucking stupid about the way you handle PEDs.

I realize that you think that if you hang enough big-name players out to dry, then the media and the blinkered old men who think the game was just fine the way Cap Anson left it will decide that you've cleaned things up, and then they'll leave you alone. You are wrong. They will never be satisfied. Produce one star, they'll immediately start clamoring for two more. Give up two more - regardless if if means climbing into bed with a sleazeball fake doctor with money and legal problems and all the credibility of a state-network Turkish newscaster - and they'll demand four. It will never, ever be enough, and the more you pay, the more they'll want.

Contrast that with the way the NFL handles things. Your Pro Bowl linebacker gets popped for drugs? Whitewash and talk about his work ethic. Your Defensive Rookie of the Year gets nailed for PEDs? Have your tame media cast aspersions on the testing process and claim the guy has "a special body". Laugh off your critics, and laugh at them, and realize that they only have the power that you give them.

Now, I am not saying that the NFL is a model to emulate. But it certainly has been more successful in battling the perception of PED use - PEDs, I might add, which are advertised constantly on sports media channels - and as such, they're not constantly turning their defenders on one another.

The deal MLB struck with the Biogenesis guy stinks. They've offered to bail him out and protect him from the Feds in exchange for the hammer to use on a few big names, and if they try it, the union will have them in court faster that Jeffty Loria can beg for public money. And once they get "Doctor" Bosch on the stand - the fake doctor, the fraud, the broke guy desperate for cash, the target of prosecution looking for a way out - MLBPA's lawyers are going to tear him into thin strips of jerky. Meanwhile the owners will be trashing their product - the players fighting this - and the end result is that the game will suffer.

The only people who will be happy are the "purists", the ones convinced that the modern game is inexcusably corrupt and the baseball of their youth was pristine. These are the guys who want Pete Rose in the Hall of Fame because "his records were clean" - never mind that he was hopped up on greenies half the time and hung around with known steroid users like Donald Stenger.  They'll enjoy picking the bones of the controversy this time, and take swipes at the names that are named.

And then they'll go back to hating any players who overshadow the stars of their youth and the dreams of their childhoods, and to waiting hungrily for the next victim to the cast to the wolves.
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