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I was hoping the witch hunts would end with the Mitchell Report.

Turns out, they're only beginning.

I watched the Mitchell Report on ESPN, as I was working from home due to shitty weather, and as I watched it, I got the key component of the report, what Sen. Mitchell was trying to get across, and precisely what I figured I would get: that baseball - like other sports, let's not lie to ourselves - has a major drug culture, where people have to use drugs specifically to get noticed in a sea of other players, and Latin-based players take the drugs without knowing what they're putting into their bodies (due to lack of any substantial education; most of these guys are lucky to know their local alphabet, much less the cognisant effects of stanozolol), and it becomes accepted use in the Majors, where until recently, the effects of the drugs were pooh-poohed by everyone in charge, including the Commissioner, who used steroids to make Baseball the most profitable sport in America next to the NFL, and even then, baseball only cared about steroids because Congress was breathing down their necks. In short, this was a major problem that required a complete overhaul of the system at every level.

Naturally, the media - who shockingly decide who goes into the Hall of Fame, which is shameful - have stories to sell (the reason they shouldn't be allowed to vote). And they, for the most part, have completely glossed over everything Senator Mitchell said and is instead focusing on the one thing they've trained the stupid monkey baseball fans to focus on: the names in the report.

There were 76 names focused on in the Mitchell Report. Most of them - excepting those focused on in the Balco investigation - came from two trainers, both associated with New York teams, both of whom are looking at a lot - and I mean, a LOT - of jail time, and are looking at reducing said jail time. Therefore, if they have ANYTHING that the government or the Mitchell Report wants, they're going to spit it to save their asses. Isn't it sad that everyone involved with "cleaning up" the game is so dirty that "cleaning up the game" is the only way for them to clean themselves up? I personally think it's sad, but not as sad as us relying on these assholes, taking their words as absolute gospel, and using it as science for no other reason than tarnishing someone's reputation. And don't fool yourself; that's really what this is about: tarnishing peoples' reputations. No one even gives a shit about those that DIDN'T do anything (hello, Frank Thomas! Good luck getting into the Hall, buddy!), all they want to do is bring down others, which truly is the mark of a bitter jock-sniffer. Naturally, no perspective has been used since the report came out.

"Roger Clemens is a doper!" "Now, calm down, there are 75 other peo--" "ROGER! ROGER! NO HALL OF FAME, FUCKER!"

"Hey guys, instead of indicting these 76 players, since the names all came from two sources, how about we consider this a major problem that affects all of baseb--" "Down with all these faggots! Boooo! Boooooooooo!" "You realize there could be many more players, and holding only these guys to this standard is unfair, right?" "GAY FAG DYKES! DYKE FAG GAYS!!!"

"Instead of swearing that you're going to keep Barry and Roger out of the Hall of Fame the same way you're using the only power you really have - your vote - against that dastardly Mark McGwire, why don't you just imagine what's going to happen if it was proven someone already elected by you was using? Hm?" "Fuck that, I'm going to go jerk off to Erin Andrews now!"

Of course, the media are pandering to the fans, who are all various levels of retarded. Typical Americans stick with something as long as they can laugh at it, and then they move on to another shiny thing. Once the Mitchell Report gets old, they'll go back to watching the Thiesman injury on Youtube, or finding Lindsay Lohan nipple slips. They don't care that there's always been a WORSE drug culture in Football, where their injuries are debilitating, or that maybe there could be problems in all sports, from cycling (which Americans only pay attention to because of drugs) to hockey (which Americans only pay attention to just to say "lol, hockey is dead!").

Baseball isn't helping itself, either. To begin with, the Mitchell Report was hurt by the fact that the Players Union "recommended" - much in the way the Teamsters "recommended" people stay on the right side of the picket fence, I'm guessing - that the players don't talk to anyone from the investigation, which virtually destroyed the Report from a legal standpoint, as every player took the recommendation. Of course, I can see why; Bud Selig, one of the most gutless people in sports, threw out Senator Mitchell's recommendation of not disciplining everyone within two hours of him making it, saying he was going to handle discipline on a "case by case basis". I'm sure Roger and Barry will be heartbroken by their coming suspensions as they head into retirement.

So in conclusion, the Mitchell Report was compromised before it even came out by the players covering their own asses, and was made even more useless by the same Commissioner that commissioned it in the first place, as he does anything and everything he can to pass his buck to someone else, and the people it was meant to show "hey, we know the problem" to - the fans and media - are too stupid and too selfish, respectively, to get the key part of the report, and are instead focusing on who they're going to ruin. And don't even get me started on the Boston fans who are all cumming their pants over this.

As a true baseball fan, I'm depressed. But even more depressing to me is that I'm not surprised.

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
pulsemm
Dec. 16th, 2007 03:02 pm (UTC)
The report definitely is quite depressing... but it's all Selig's fault? These players should all look at Andy Pettite, and even if he's lying about how often he did the stuff, he at least admitted he did HGH. Shit, the players should look in the mirror -- every last one of them. They either (a) did drugs that are against the rules or (b) looked the other way while others did said drugs. At least Frank Thomas spoke with the Mitchell team. But where is the outrage? Where are the players saying "fuck this, I'm not gonna be outshined/outearned/beat by these cheaters?"

But yes, this is depressing.
superbus
Dec. 16th, 2007 11:58 pm (UTC)
It's not "all" anyone's fault; the blame goes equally to the players that cheated (because they're adults and should really know better), players that DIDN'T cheat (for looking the other way, unless your name is Tony Gwynn, David Wells or Frank Thomas), the agents (for looking the other way), GMs (except Kevin Towers), Commissioner (who actively censored Towers!), media (who were too busy going "oooh pretty homers~"), and owners (who, naturally, only cared that money was coming back to the game after the debacle in '94). But shit rolls downhill, and the top of that hill is Selig. Do I think he's the "most" to blame? No, but he could have done the most to help, and he flat-out ignored the problem, and even did his best to sweep it under the rug. But that doesn't anger me as much as his zest to punish other players - against recommendations! - in a big to get the pressure off of him. This is about nothing more than Bud's legacy, and frankly, I think his legacy is already in the shitter in my eyes, and the sad thing is that he's going to go to the Hall of Fame but Mark McGwire, Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens most likely won't now. Somewhere, Bowie Khun is smiling.

I do wish there was more outrage. So far, the ones that have admitted it have done it mostly contritely; J.P. Santangelo came out about it on his radio programme, and... got hammered, mainly because he was a cheat, but also because he had denied it to that point. Andy Pettite issued a lawyered apology saying, basically, "if I fucked up, my bad", after denying it, and he's getting thrashed in the New York papers (Lupica's last article, like anything he's written since about 1995, is disgusting). No wonder no one wants to admit what they did; look what happens when you do! It's truly a no-win situation, and the only thing I can hope is that all this bullshit makes the players that are coming up now think twice about what it will do to their reputations (they've already shown that they don't care what it's done to their bodies, or that they're too stupid to know).

Personally, I wish some people - like Brian Roberts, or Roger if he's innocent - would sue, even if it's so much as a gesture. That was telling for Barry Bonds; all the fluffing his lawyer did didn't produce lawsuit one. Roger, if he's innocent and truly cares about his reputation, should come forth with a strong lawsuit, as he's got the money to do it. Someone like Brian Roberts isn't so fortunate, because as Buster Olney said in an awesome blog piece (if you don't have Insider, tell me and I'll do copy-pasta), too many names in that report were based on hearsay. "Oh, I might have talked to him once or twice". After that, Mitchell asks player if he wants to talk about it, the player says no because otherwise his knees are going to be clubbed in by Fehr's boys, and that's basically an admission of guilt to the Mitchell Report. If anything was wrong with the report itself, it was the zest he went through in putting it on players that didn't have a shread of evidence against them other than the faulty memory of someone that's going to jail for the majority of his remaining days.
pulsemm
Dec. 17th, 2007 03:56 am (UTC)
But how do you prove you're innocent? If Roger DOES sue for slander, and LOSES... ugh.
superbus
Dec. 17th, 2007 04:59 am (UTC)
Lester Munson stated on ESPN that the burden of proof is so ridiculously high that it most likely wouldn't be worth it to try, as it's almost impossible to PROVE that there was malice, especially considering that the rules are different for public figures.

However, judging by the replies in another ESPN article - responses from HOF voters - I think Clemens, should he desire the HOF (who doesn't?), needs to at least give it a shot, because even if those that are saying no are retarded (seriously, the last time people acted like this, it was with the Duke Lacrosse trial), they're still going to have their vote in five years, and they're going to be able to sell their explanations in the next day's papers.
pulsemm
Dec. 17th, 2007 02:35 pm (UTC)
I guess the other thing he can do is simply KEEP PITCHING, do it well, and volunteer to be randomly tested.
samuraiter
Dec. 16th, 2007 04:30 pm (UTC)
It's a mess, quite possibly of Black Sox proportions, and I agree that the media is going about it all wrong, but I don't think they've gone about many things right since, oh, I don't know, maybe Watergate.
superbus
Dec. 17th, 2007 12:03 am (UTC)
And where are the Woodwards? Where are people of journalistic integrity that can put a proper perspective on this era?

Other than the writers of the book Game of Shadows, there aren't any. Mike Lupica hasn't reported from a live game for almost 15 years, but he still spews his bile for the New York Daily News. Half of the columnists you see have less integrity than most bloggers you see nowadays, and really should be writing for their own site, where they should say whatever they want. It's not about getting the proper story anymore; it's about getting the sexy story. And that goes nationwide.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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