The More I Think About It

Yesterday, after it was revealed that the Hall of Fame would be inducting exactly zero players this summer, I expressed my opinion.  I focused on Craig Biggio, Barry Bonds, and Roger Clemens.  Two of the three are very much suspected to have used PEDs during their career (Bonds and Clemens).  I neglected to point out how Mike Piazza, who was probably the best offensive catcher in baseball history, was also snubbed.  Four players who should have been elected.

For the Hall of Fame to truly claim that it celebrates the best of baseball, guys like Clemens and Bonds have to be in.  Whether or not they used steroids is not the point.  If they did, the same writers who took the moral stand against them and did not vote for them, were complicit in the coverup in not reporting it from the start.  But apparently morality has different standards based off of who is claiming the high ground.

The Hall of Fame proudly displays artifacts directly attributed to both Clemens and Bonds.  Items such as the glove used while striking out 20 in a game, or first base from home run 715, or the ball from home run 756.  The Hall is most likely in possession of dozens of game-used artifacts from two players deemed unworthy of enshrinement.  Can you say hypocritical?  But, you may ask, don’t the fans deserve to see the ball that Bonds clobbered for home run number 756?  Sure, why not?  But to celebrate that feat while excluding the player is insane.  The Hall has the same standard when it comes to Pete Rose.

The more I think about next year’s ballot, when guys like Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, Mike Mussina, and Frank Thomas are eligible for the first time, how would the voters be able to justify voting any of them in?  Just because nobody has said that they used PEDs, does not mean they did not.  They should face the same standard as Bonds and Clemens.  But Maddux and Glavine are rail-thin, you may say.  Sure they are, but it has not been only gigantic sluggers who have been busted for PED use.  Andy Pettitte admitted to using steroids to help him get back on the mound quicker, and he looks more like Glavine or Maddux than he does like Bonds or Clemens.  How do we know that Maddux and Glavine were clean?  Because they were nice guys who went out every 5 days and took the ball?  So they never had anything bother them that some ice couldn’t handle?  I will admit that it is a stretch to think that either Maddux or Glavine ever used PEDs.  You can’t just assume they didn’t because they were not assholes to the media like Bonds or intense and fiery like Clemens; Andy Pettitte is very cordial to the media, and stays rather even keel on the mound, yet he used steroids.

Maddux and Glavine are pretty sure bets to be elected next year, and Mussina and Thomas will probably be elected as well (if they are not, they will fall just short).  It is a shame that Clemens and Bonds are unlikely to be there with them.

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