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savafan
03-29-2006, 09:19 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/29/sports/baseball/29chass.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all&oref=slogin

By MURRAY CHASS
Published: March 29, 2006

THERE'S no indication if he found it a page turner, but Bud Selig spent last weekend reading "Game of Shadows," the new book that details Barry Bonds's suspected use of performance-enhancing substances. There's no indication, either, if Selig became ill when he finished reading it.

The whole mess is enough to make a mere fan sick, let alone Selig, the commissioner of baseball. Selig has to deal with Bonds and all of the steroid reports and suspicions, and while he would not stand up and publicly cheer if Bonds were to disappear down a manhole tomorrow, he would breathe a large sigh of relief.

Selig is on the verge of announcing a steroid investigation, perhaps in the next 24 to 48 hours, though not just of Bonds, because singling out one player would be problematic considering the issue has become a morass for Major League Baseball. The investigation will probably be more widespread, though what it will entail is not clear.

Baseball will not do the investigation itself. No one would accept an in-house investigation. The name George Mitchell was floating around baseball circles yesterday.

One executive said Selig was considering asking Mitchell, the former Senate majority leader from Maine, to head the investigation, if he had not already asked him. But the executive, granted anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss Selig's plans, said he did not know if Mitchell, a Democrat, would accept what seems like an impossible mission.

Selig did not return a call yesterday seeking comment on the matter.

A representative from Mitchell's law office in Washington said Mitchell was traveling. Bob DuPuy, Major League Baseball's president, said he had no comment when he was asked about Mitchell.

"It is still under consideration," DuPuy said of a possible investigation. "But the direction will be resolved within the next 48 hours."

Selig faces a difficult decision on Bonds, however he proceeds, and he will proceed in some manner because the published tales of Bonds and performance-enhancing substances cannot be ignored.

Among the questions facing Selig are these:

¶Can he single out Bonds for investigation to the exclusion of other players who have been reported to have used steroids?

¶What kind of disciplinary action, if any, could he take if an examination finds validity in the published reports and public suspicions?

¶How does he handle the moment when Bonds hits career home run No. 756, breaking the record of Selig's good friend, Henry Aaron?

That is where the manhole would come in handy, obviating the need for any kind of home run ceremony.

It's unclear what Selig could or would do if an investigation confirmed published reports of Bonds's use of steroids. Because baseball had not specifically outlawed steroids in the years Bonds was suspected of using them, could Selig take belated action against him? Could he act under the best-interests-of-baseball clause and order some of Bonds's achievements stricken from the records?

If an investigation is not completed by the time Bonds hits No. 756, should his total be recorded in the records books in disappearing ink?

Although most of the recent fuss has been about Bonds, an investigator would have plenty of other players and incidents to investigate, and not just Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro.

How about players whose names have not been linked to possible steroid use?

Bonds has the spotlight and should be scrutinized closely, but he was not alone in doing whatever he did.

Just as important, should the person investigating be Mitchell? Probably not. Diplomat yes, investigator no.

Selig prefers Mitchell because he knows him well, and Selig is most comfortable with people he knows. Mitchell was a member of Selig's blue-ribbon panel on baseball economics in the late 1990's, and he is a director of the Red Sox.

Selig probably also sees Mitchell as someone who would look good to the members of Congress who are pushing him to clean up the steroid mess.

Mitchell, though, is not viewed as an investigator of the John Dowd type. Dowd set the standard for hard-hitting, take-no-prisoners sports investigations in his examination of Pete Rose.

Dowd's job, in fact, was probably easier than a wide-ranging steroid investigation would be. Dowd had one player, Rose, and one issue, gambling on baseball, to pursue, and he ably and effectively bore in on his subject.

Mitchell, who stepped down as Senate majority leader in 1994, helped broker a Northern Ireland peace agreement in 1998 on behalf of President Clinton. Bringing two warring sides together is one thing; digging into Bonds's past and confronting him in a no-nonsense inquiry is another.

An alternative choice mentioned yesterday was Louis Freeh, former director of the F.B.I. Freeh has a lot of credibility, knows the territory and could easily communicate with federal officials, starting with the United States attorney's office in San Francisco, where it all began.

KronoRed
03-29-2006, 02:34 PM
I doubt MLB will do much of anything about it, they and the players union just want it to go away, they will smile and ignore it.

Jpup
03-29-2006, 03:10 PM
there is nothing Selig can do about what happenned 2 or 3 or 5 years ago. If he does, the players will have his lunch.

I have also read most of the book, will be done with it in a day or two, and it does make you really sick to see what baseball has become. Thus far, there is no hard evidence, other than grand jury testimony, against Barry Bonds.

I don't think MLB want to go looking into this mess to deep, it may turn up that the owners will look pretty bad as well.

traderumor
03-29-2006, 03:10 PM
I'm trying to understand the point in rehashing at this point. If it's for justice, are they going to make the players return the millions of $ earned if they are guilty? And who would the money go to? Owners? TV contracts? To the guys out of the game who played by the rules and never made it to the show as a result?

But if it's not about justice, then it just seems to me as little more than more witchhunting.

Jpup
03-29-2006, 03:21 PM
I'm trying to understand the point in rehashing at this point. If it's for justice, are they going to make the players return the millions of $ earned if they are guilty? And who would the money go to? Owners? TV contracts? To the guys out of the game who played by the rules and never made it to the show as a result?

But if it's not about justice, then it just seems to me as little more than more witchhunting.

that sounds about right. that's actually what the entire BALCO investigation was, a witch hunt agains Barry Bonds. They just happenned to fall into info about Marion Jones, Tim Montgomery, Benito Santiago, Bill Romanowski, etc.

If Bud wants to blame someone, blame himself for being ignorant or just ignoring the obvious.

Cedric
03-29-2006, 03:23 PM
that sounds about right. that's actually what the entire BALCO investigation was, a witch hunt agains Barry Bonds. They just happenned to fall into info about Marion Jones, Tim Montgomery, Benito Santiago, Bill Romanowski, etc.

If Bud wants to blame someone, blame himself for being ignorant or just ignoring the obvious.

And wasn't it a great witch hunt. I'm thrilled that the "collateral damage" was ratted out also.

Other than grand jury testimony? Jpup- I doubt if you saw Barry shooting something in his butt cheeks you would believe it was steirods. You would have been perfect on the Oj jury.

registerthis
03-29-2006, 03:55 PM
that sounds about right. that's actually what the entire BALCO investigation was, a witch hunt agains Barry Bonds.

Are you suggesting the investigation should never have taken place?

traderumor
03-29-2006, 04:01 PM
that sounds about right. that's actually what the entire BALCO investigation was, a witch hunt agains Barry Bonds. They just happenned to fall into info about Marion Jones, Tim Montgomery, Benito Santiago, Bill Romanowski, etc.

If Bud wants to blame someone, blame himself for being ignorant or just ignoring the obvious.
Not sure about all that, since that was an investigation to blow the lid off the sucker. This potential investigation seems to be beating a dead horse unless they have some punitive damages in mind, like records, fines, banishment and the sort.

RedLegSuperStar
03-29-2006, 04:12 PM
I myself want to read the book. I'm not for enhancers unless your a professional wrestler. I want to know the game I love and respect and choose to follow is played right without drugs. Sure you can't correct what took place in the past but I hope this investigation if there is one gets rid of those who are cheating now. There's tons of young talented atheletes out there dying for a shot at the big leagues. Like was said before, Bud has no one to blame but his own self.

membengal
03-29-2006, 04:13 PM
Well, all I am hoping for is the records of McGwire, Sosa and Bonds be stricken from the books. Or asterisked. If the "investigation" causes Selig to move that far, I would be pleased.

And, I hope, that the writing powers that be deny them the HOF. And, yes, Bonds too, despite the fact that he would have been a shoo-in prior to launching the cheating arc.

RBA
03-29-2006, 04:16 PM
I don't think I'm in the minority opinion that the management/ownership knew what was going on.

Jpup
03-30-2006, 04:47 AM
I don't think I'm in the minority opinion that the management/ownership knew what was going on.

exactly.

My stance on the issue is ironicaly much like that of Pete Rose. MLB didn't have a steriod policy prior to 2003. Whatever happenned before that should be left alone.

btw, if you read the book, you will see that the BALCO investigation started because of Barry Bonds. Novitsky, the PI, was all about getting Bonds. I just want to point out that I haven't completely finished the book. Those that haven't read it should not comment on the issue like they have. It is a wealth of information, but how much of it is true and how much of it is fact? We don't know. Much of the information comes from Kim Bell, a scorned lover, and Victor Conte, a man out to save his own end. Did Bonds use steriods, I believe he did. Can MLB do anything about it prior to the 2004 season (when punishments for performance enhancing drugs were instituted), I don't think they can.

Cedric, I don't appreciate the personal comment either. Attack the post, not the poster, I believe that is the rule around here.

Izzardius
03-30-2006, 07:02 AM
The only thing the investigation will accomplish is revealing more information. If Selig tries to penalize anyone for taking steroids before the policy was in place the Union will break him. Selig did willfully ignore what was going on, but keep in mind that he didn't have much leverage to do anything until recently. It wasn't a coincidence that the threat of Conressional intervention preceded the new policy.

Roy Tucker
03-30-2006, 08:09 AM
The only thing the investigation will accomplish is revealing more information. If Selig tries to penalize anyone for taking steroids before the policy was in place the Union will break him. Selig did willfully ignore what was going on, but keep in mind that he didn't have much leverage to do anything until recently. It wasn't a coincidence that the threat of Conressional intervention preceded the new policy.
I think this hits the nail on the head.

The best that I can see coming out of this is for all to see how the MLB culture changed to enable steroid abuse. All the way from the commisioner to the front offices to the coaches to the players to the union. All are to blame. I'd personally like to see names named.

I don't think any suspensions, bannings, asterisks, bans from the HoF, etc. will result. But I do think any accomplishments during the steroid era will be viewed with a skunk eye by the fans, HoF committees, and the history books.

KearnsyEars
03-30-2006, 08:20 AM
Here's the idea I had:

Why can't they put Bonds on active suspension while the investigation is being held? There has to be something that they can do like that? I know it would be unprecedented, but then at least they could protect the sexiest record in all of sports.
I know the idea is less than perfect, but honestly I think something along those lines would be sufficient.

Or anounce to the Giants that if Bonds is found guilty, they will be ineligible for postseason play 'X' number of years after 2006, unless he confesses. Then you get others involved making sure Bonds admits to cheating, investigation over, and records asterisked.

traderumor
03-30-2006, 09:05 AM
Here's the idea I had:

Why can't they put Bonds on active suspension while the investigation is being held? There has to be something that they can do like that? I know it would be unprecedented, but then at least they could protect the sexiest record in all of sports.
I know the idea is less than perfect, but honestly I think something along those lines would be sufficient.

Or anounce to the Giants that if Bonds is found guilty, they will be ineligible for postseason play 'X' number of years after 2006, unless he confesses. Then you get others involved making sure Bonds admits to cheating, investigation over, and records asterisked.Technically, Bonds is not guilty of anything and a suspension could not precede the investigation. If it did, you can bet your sweet patooty that Bonds would sue if no definitive standard of guilt was met. He obviously has no shame, so baseball is going to have to dot i's and cross t's on this one.

savafan
03-30-2006, 10:17 AM
If Selig can suspend John Rocker for the comments made in SI, then he should have no trouble suspending Bonds.

http://www.newsday.com/sports/printedition/ny-sphey304681202mar30,0,24370,print.column?coll=ny-sports-print

Jon Heyman
SPORTS COLUMNIST

March 30, 2006

It feels like we're already in the penalty phase for Barry Bonds. He goes right after Zacarias Moussaoui. It's Moussaoui, then it's Bonds.

Believe me, it's no great joy to stick up for Bonds; even his poor lawyers have to know that by now. And yet, it's way too easy to be a part of the pack calling for his rather ample head.

Unfortunately, this steroids mess is not as simple as that. Major League Baseball is expected to announce today that it's beginning an investigation into BALCO, the book and Bonds. Although baseball has no choice now but to make a show of things, it has a problem if it intends to go after Bonds. Actually, baseball has a few problems.

One problem is that Bonds wasn't nearly the only one taking steroids in his era. One player told Newsday that baseball would be "astonished" by the number of players who used drugs to enhance performance. If an investigation could really uncover the truth about who used and who didn't, it may well discover that it's a lot harder to find a home-run hitter who never took a steroid, never did a drug, during the era of 1990-2005, than to find ones who did.

The one thing we can surely say is that Bonds was the one who used them most effectively. Long before he picked up a needle, Bonds was the best player of his era. But maybe he also had the best drugs, the best chemist, a better cocktail. Steroids expert Gary Wadler, the Manhasset doctor, said users like to compare notes about who has the best cocktail. Well, I think that argument is just about over now.

According to "Game of Shadows," the book that juiced up this issue yet again, it was Bonds' 10-drug cocktail that helped produce 73 home runs in a season in which he was walked a third of the time he came to the plate. If he hadn't been walked so often, he might have hit 100.

Baseball's other problem is that it wasn't looking very hard while Bonds was doing what now seems obvious. So if the investigation is independent and honest, baseball isn't going to look too good, either. Frankly, we were all too busy celebrating baseball's rebirth to look. That includes commissioner Bud Selig, baseball executives, reporters, almost everyone.

Selig's new investigation has become necessary, if only for public expedience. Selig previously took some very important steps to ensure baseball had pro sports' best drug policy and would clean up its mess (though Wadler points out three of Bonds' alleged 10 drugs are either still allowable or undetectable by baseball's process). Here's my prediction: Selig's new investigation will prove nothing we don't already know.

We already know Bonds did it, and we know baseball struck out in the process. If his oversized head and his over-the-top homer outputs don't prove he did it ... if his wormy testimony that he didn't knowingly take steroids doesn't prove it, either ... authors Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams finally did prove it.

Bonds did not deny one thing that's in their book. Neither did his poor lawyers, whose lame lawsuit was nothing more than a misguided attempt to distract folks from the facts. If anything, the authors may have cut Bonds a break by writing he never had anything "stronger than a shake from a health-food store" prior to 1999, something they couldn't possibly know.

Selig's investigation is too late. We already know that many, if not most or almost all the sluggers of the 1990s, cheated. One fact is going unnoticed now, that 100 players failed MLB's first steroid test in 2003, and that was a year the banned list was short and the players were forewarned. It was impossible to fail, yet 100 managed to.

Bonds is the last person I'd want to stand up for. He's an ornery SOB, and he wouldn't tell the truth about the time of day. And yet, the situation is a lot more complex than Bonds' rough personality.

This may be why it's hard to find great players to trash Bonds. Maybe they back Bonds to adhere to some players' code of silence. But maybe it's because they know the true score.

"He should have the record," Reds great Tony Perez, who played in Hank Aaron's era, said the other day. "Barry is still playing, and he's still hitting home runs. To me, he hit the home runs, and he's supposed to break the record. To hit home runs, you've got to hit the ball. It's not easy to hit a 100-mph fastball, or even 95 fastball, out of the park."

And Rickey Henderson said, "If he hit the ball and accomplished what he accomplished, I think he deserves [the record]. A lot of players did a lot of steroids. I think it's just the era, the time.

"There wasn't no one to stop it. There wasn't no say-so that it wasn't right or wasn't legal. To me, it was making baseball look good. And maybe they just turned their head."

Now baseball is turning its head right back around. But maybe it's too late to turn back now.

It's been done before

Bud Selig's upcoming investigation of steroid use in baseball is not unprecedented. Previous commissioners have launched probes of players for offenses involving gambling and drugs, resulting in fines as well as banishment from the game.

Book thrown at Sox

After the White Sox were accused of throwing the 1919 World Series, owners who wanted a probe of the players named Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis baseball's first commissioner. Eight players were indicted by a grand jury but were cleared in 1921. Landis' investigation established that the players knew about a plot to fix the Series and banned them for life to protect the integrity of the game.

Penalties for drug use

In 1986, Peter Ueberroth had a series of meetings with players who previously were named in federal trials on cocaine traffic in Pittsburgh. Seven of the players who admittedly had used drugs, including Keith Hernandez, were fined 10 percent of their annual salary by Ueberroth, who also ordered them to devote 100 hours a year for two years for community service and to face career-long drug testing. Fourteen other players received lesser penalties from Ueberroth.

Gambling not tolerated

In 1989, commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti enlisted Washington lawyer John Dowd to investigate Pete Rose for gambling on baseball. After receiving Dowd's report, Giamatti concluded that Rose did bet on games, including those involving his own team, the Reds. Giamatti issued a lifetime ban on Rose.

KearnsyEars
03-30-2006, 10:23 AM
I dunno. The thing is I'm sick of hearing about it by now, yet it's not even come close to being done being in the headlights.

registerthis
03-30-2006, 10:24 AM
Did Steve Howe commit an offense with his cocaine use? I honestly don't know--was cocaine a "banned substance" by MLB in the 80s? He was suspended seven times for it, if I remember correctly.

I'm not sure baseball's hands are as tied here as some might think. The "best interest of baseball" clause which Selig could invoke is very ambiguous and expansive. I'm certain the team of lawyers which Selig no doubt has working furiously on this matter could come up with a reasonable argument for the suspension of a player like Bonds if his actions were deemed to be threatening to the best interests of the game.

No doubt the Union would fight it furiously, but something else to keep in mind is that vigorously and publicly fighting baseball's actions against a known steroid abuser could be a PR disaster, particularly considering the public's feelings on steroids at the moment.

A conceivable scenario that I can forsee coming from the investigation is a light suspension of players turned up in the investigation--say, ranging from 10 to 30 games--so that baseball can say they did something in response to it, and players like Bonds can go on about their business. You won't see Bonds banned from the game, but it wouldn't surprise me at all to see some punishment handed down for this, and if it's not overly severe I'd be equally surprised if the player's union puts up that much of a fight.

Chip R
03-30-2006, 10:31 AM
A conceivable scenario that I can forsee coming from the investigation is a light suspension of players turned up in the investigation--say, ranging from 10 to 30 games--so that baseball can say they did something in response to it, and players like Bonds can go on about their business. You won't see Bonds banned from the game, but it wouldn't surprise me at all to see some punishment handed down for this, and if it's not overly severe I'd be equally surprised if the player's union puts up that much of a fight.

Selig would do well, PR wise, to suspend Bonds and then let the chips fall where they may. If the suspension is turned over, he can say he tried. If the suspension is upheld or even reduced, all the better.

The thing MLB has to be careful about here is not the union appealing the suspension but it's Bonds suing Selig and/or MLB. And don't think he wouldn't do it.

Too bad Bonds is so unlikeable and going for the HR record. Otherwise no one would give a crap.

registerthis
03-30-2006, 10:35 AM
The thing MLB has to be careful about here is not the union appealing the suspension but it's Bonds suing Selig and/or MLB. And don't think he wouldn't do it.

That's a very good point. Baseball would have to hand out the suspensions to everyone turned up in the investigation, if that's what they decide to do. They couldn't just suspend Bonds, that would be nothing more than the witch hunt invoked by others here.

savafan
03-30-2006, 10:55 AM
Would it serve any purpose to hand down suspensions on Sosa, Palmeiro and McGwire who are out of the game?

Chip R
03-30-2006, 10:59 AM
Would it serve any purpose to hand down suspensions on Sosa, Palmeiro and McGwire who are out of the game?

It'd keep them out of the HOF and from any position in the game.

savafan
03-30-2006, 11:02 AM
It'd keep them out of the HOF and from any position in the game.

A lifetime suspension would, yes, but I was talking about the previously mentioned 30 game suspension.

FWIW, I agree with you Chip. Selig would be looked upon most favorably by suspending Bonds and then letting the chips fall where they may.

BrooklynRedz
03-30-2006, 11:14 AM
A lifetime suspension would, yes, but I was talking about the previously mentioned 30 game suspension.

FWIW, I agree with you Chip. Selig would be looked upon most favorably by suspending Bonds and then letting the chips fall where they may.

Does it have to be a lifetime ban to affect their standing for the Hall? Or is it simply being listed on MLB's suspended list?

registerthis
03-30-2006, 11:16 AM
Would it serve any purpose to hand down suspensions on Sosa, Palmeiro and McGwire who are out of the game?

I would imagine something along the lines that, if you're currently out of the game, you can't hold a position within MLB for "x" number of months/years.

A lifetime suspension for this would be too much and likely unenforceable.

registerthis
03-30-2006, 11:17 AM
Does it have to be a lifetime ban to affect their standing for the Hall? Or is it simply being listed on MLB's suspended list?

It can be whatever baseball decides it will be. With Rose, they sort of made it up as they went along, and decided that those on the "permanently banned" list would also be ineligible for hall enshrinement.

M2
03-30-2006, 11:26 AM
I doubt Bonds would have much of suit against MLB if he got banned. A case would revolve around two things: 1) Is there reasonable evidence that Bonds played for years using a variety of illegal drugs?, 2) Does the commissioner of baseball have the power to ban players for taking part in unsavory activities (i.e. gambling and drug use)?

I think the answer in both cases is an emphatic yes.

Chip R
03-30-2006, 11:27 AM
Does it have to be a lifetime ban to affect their standing for the Hall? Or is it simply being listed on MLB's suspended list?

I would think it would be anyone on the ineligible list. I don't know if that would include suspended players or not. MLB could go Mays and Mantle on the accused players but they too could sue MLB.

Roy Tucker
03-30-2006, 01:12 PM
Buster Olney makes the commish/owners/etc point better than I did...

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?name=olney_buster#20060330&lpos=spotlight&lid=tab1pos1

Scapegoat hunt set to beginposted: Thursday, March 30, 2006 | Feedback

Rather than stand up and take responsibility for how he and others within the institution of baseball failed to lead on the steroid issue, Bud Selig is going to order an investigation of the steroid use of Barry Bonds and others.
Summon the hounds. Sound the horn. Let the hunt for scapegoats begin. Call your publicist, your favorite newspaper columnist, and bring 'em along.

Just a handful of questions before we begin this farce:

1. Why is the commissioner launching this investigation now, 11 years after two general managers and two Hall of Fame candidates were quoted in the Los Angeles Times about what they perceived to be a rampant rise of steroids? Did the commissioner, who was quoted in that same article alongside Tony Gwynn and Frank Thomas and others, really need the publishing of a book in 2006 to let him know there might be a performance-enhancer problem in the game?

After the andro incident with Mark McGwire in 1998, the evidence possibly linking Manny Alexander to steroids in 2000, the admission of Ken Caminiti in 2002, the death of Orioles pitcher Steve Bechler in 2003, the onset of the BALCO investigation, the honesty of Kevin Towers and Wally Joyner in 2005, the pathetic performance of baseball at last year's congressional hearings, the suspension of Rafael Palmeiro -- let alone the anecdotal evidence of 17 years of expanding jaws and foreheads and biceps -- there will be an investigation now because of a book?

2. In the summer of 2003, baseball began its first form of steroid testing, and supposedly more than two teams' worth of players tested positive. Why wasn't the investigation launched then? Baseball had generated its own evidence of extensive steroid use; why was nothing done then?

3. As baseball starts this investigation, why is it simultaneously destroying possible evidence of use of performance-enhancing drugs? Yep, that's right. Under the current testing system, all urine samples taken from players are being discarded after testing, rather than held, in the event that more designer steroids are discovered.

So while former Sen. George Mitchell's investigative staff will be looking for clues of steroid use in 1998, Major League Baseball will be destroying its best clues to steroid use in 2006. Can't wait for the commissioner to explain that gem.

4. Will the ex-senator also investigate the teams involved about what they suspected and when they suspected it? For example: Is Giants owner Peter Magowan going to be investigated about what was being said about Bonds? General manager Brian Sabean? Team doctors? Trainers?

5. Will the commissioner and other baseball leaders also be investigated, along the same lines? Will Selig be pressed on why not a single Major League Baseball executive asked that a player be tested for illegal steroid use for more than a decade, despite possessing that right all along?

Will they be asked the uncomfortable question of why some players, like Steve Howe, were tested for substance abuse, and not for steroids?

Because we all know the uncomfortable answer: Cocaine and other similar drugs are performance-detractors, while steroids are performance-enhancers.

6. Assuming that evidence of steroid use will be found -- and we'll be shocked when they find stuff, I'm sure -- what is the good commissioner going to do then? Is he going to strike down records, issue suspensions?

Because we really could save him a whole lot of time. If he wants to alter records impacted by possible steroid use, he should take down virtually every statistic generated over the last 10 to 15 years. Strike all of them.

Baseball is not like sprinting, where a single number can be struck from the record book without affecting the other numbers. All of the statistics are intertwined. It appears that Bonds cheated to hit his home runs; well, what do we make of the possibility that perhaps 30 to 40 percent of the homers he hit from 2000 to 2004 came against pitchers using steroids?

7. And as the scapegoat hunt winds up, maybe the commissioner or former Sen. Mitchell will eventually answer this final query. If this investigation is being launched in the best interests of baseball, who ultimately did greater damage to the sport: Any single player who chose to use steroids, or the highest-ranking baseball and union officials who effectively ignored the problem for more than a decade?

Launching an investigation is not leadership. Leadership is taking responsibility.

Chip R
03-30-2006, 01:34 PM
Buster Olney makes the commish/owners/etc point better than I did...


OK, who died and left Buster Olney his brain?

tsj017
03-30-2006, 01:43 PM
Further proof--as if any were needed--that Commissioner Bud has been and continues to be an utter disaster.

The owners and Selig had to know, or at the very least strongly suspect, that steroids were being widely used and abused. However, home runs were flying out of the parks, and fans were streaming in to see the show. Steroids? What steroids? Heck, a few years ago, MLB promoted the All-Star Game with bloated, puffed-up cartoon sluggers. It's like they were reveling in it.

I'm a (sadder but wiser) Pete Rose fan, so I had no love for Bart Giamatti. Right now, though, I'm forced to wonder, "What would Bart do?"

Maybe they should just make Vince McMahon the new MLB commissioner and be done with it.

M2
03-30-2006, 02:16 PM
I agree that Selig deserves a good lambasting for allowing the problem to bloom and fester, but this is the right thing to do even if Bud spent a decade doing the wrong thing.

membengal
03-30-2006, 02:26 PM
Great point M2, just because Selig et al have been in the wrong for 10+ years, they don't get to try and address it now? I don't buy that. If records are stricken, so be it. That would be enough. That and no HOF, something in the hands of the writers at this point. No HOF for any of them McGwire/Sosa/Bonds/Palmeiro.

Chip R
03-30-2006, 02:27 PM
So, I wonder when the NFL is going to follow suit?

membengal
03-30-2006, 02:31 PM
No, it won't because (1) records are not as cherished in the NFL as they are in baseball and (2) I don't believe the few that appear cherished were snapped or assualted because of someone enhanced with steroids and HGH.

It's the records that got ruined that make this an issue. The single season and career homerun marks specifically.

M2
03-30-2006, 02:32 PM
So, I wonder when the NFL is going to follow suit?

Kind of hard to suspend a whole league.

membengal
03-30-2006, 02:36 PM
And, at least the NFL had steroid testing throughout this period. Their scandal was early on, and they have tested for it. Lengthy suspensions have resulted for positive tests, 4 games (1/4 of a regular season). I don't think the NFL has near the issue on this that MLB does. At. All.

registerthis
03-30-2006, 02:44 PM
Kind of hard to suspend a whole league.

:laugh: So true.

Chip R
03-30-2006, 02:46 PM
Kind of hard to suspend a whole league.

More likely it's because Barry Bonds plays baseball not football.

registerthis
03-30-2006, 02:46 PM
More likely it's because Barry Bonds plays baseball not football.

Nah, there are more pretentious a-holes in the NFL than in MLB.

Chip R
03-30-2006, 02:49 PM
Nah, there are more pretentious a-holes in the NFL than in MLB.
Bonds makes T.O. look like an angel.

SeeinRed
03-30-2006, 03:04 PM
Nah, there are more pretentious a-holes in the NFL than in MLB.

On the whole, I totally agree if you are talking about actions during games, practice, in the locker room, etc. But most of that comes form the WR position, which I believe comes with the territory. But if your talking about off the field, Baseball has its own problems with pesonality. As Chip R said, everybody knows about Bonds. You hear stories about certain pitchers. Kenny Rogers, Curt Schilling, Randy Johnson, and so on.

Now though, we'll find out if any of it was caused by roid rage. :evil: That is if you believe that MLB is really going to investigate thoroughly, or if they'll just go through the motions so they can say they did. :rolleyes: Seems like Selig is just setting us all up for another letdown as far as him taking real action toward a problem without being pushed.

I'm getting sick of hearing that they don't want to turn this into a witch hunt. :rolleyes: Just ask Pete Rose what a witch hunt is.

(Disclaimer: I know Pete really did bet and the investigation was specifically aimed toward him, but shouldn't this be an investigation into Bond's steroid use? Is there anyone who can say they believe he is clean... Honestly? Everybody knows that this investigation wouldn't be taking place if it wasn't for Bonds.)

Roy Tucker
03-30-2006, 03:23 PM
OK, who died and left Buster Olney his brain?
:)

I know, I thought about writing this day down on the calendar as one that a.) I thought Olney said something smart, and b.) I agreed with him.

Frankly, I'm surprised Bud is doing this. I wonder if he realizes where it might go. Hasn't George Mitchell been mentioned as a possible Selig replacement?

Chip R
03-30-2006, 03:30 PM
I'm getting sick of hearing that they don't want to turn this into a witch hunt. :rolleyes:

It can't be a witch hunt if they already have their witch. More like the Milwaukee witch trials.

savafan
03-31-2006, 11:40 AM
http://www.newsday.com/sports/baseball/ny-sphey0331,0,5748968,print.column?coll=ny-sports-headlines

Jon Heyman
SPORTS COLUMNIST

March 31, 2006

Several players on one major-league team used to inject themselves and each other with testosterone and human growth hormone in the bathroom of their team clubhouse, according to a club official, who also told Newsday that HGH is still prevalent among major-league players.

According to the club official, players on this team preferred injecting themselves at the ballpark rather than at home to avoid detection by their wives, the real authority figures. Back then the cheaters were brazen enough to keep the HGH in their lockers.

Though HGH is disallowed in baseball's new drug policy, the sport doesn't test for it. So it's no surprise that experts predict it will become a bigger problem than ever.

Baseball sure is proud of its beefed-up drug policy, which it mentioned oh, about 50 times yesterday upon announcing its investigation of past steroid usage, BALCO, Barry Bonds and the bombshell book "Game of Shadows."

Baseball has come a long way, and yet there still are holes in its policy big enough for a bloated abuser to glide through.

Baseball's bigwigs need to forget what the sport missed in 1998 and 2001, and figure out how to stop cheaters now and in future years. Mark McGwire didn't want to talk about the past. MLB seems fixated on it.

Commissioner Bud Selig commissioned esteemed former senator George Mitchell to dig up old dirt when things still need cleaning up. The guess here is Mitchell learns nothing we didn't already know. Either Bonds, Jason Giambi or Gary Sheffield confess, or they won't. In either case, we know the score anyway, thanks to "Shadows" authors Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams.

MLB took the opportunity yesterday to pat itself on the back for getting what it says is the pros' best 'roid policy. But even if that's so, it still needs serious upgrades.

Baseball should scrap the past, risk giving union chief Don Fehr a coronary and push for changes to the new and improved policy to make it even newer and really improved. Insulin was revealed in "Shadows" as one of Bonds' 10 alleged drugs of choice, and an MLB official said they're considering adding insulin to the banned list, the best news I heard yesterday.

But the big change has to involve HGH. The club official sees HGH becoming far more prevalent, and one doctor who's been around major-leaguers for years disputed the notion that HGH by itself won't add power.

The doctor said, "It helps a player train longer. If a player hit 50 percent more home runs [with steroids], he might hit 20 percent more home runs with HGH."

MLB people say they didn't press the union on doing the blood test for HGH because its experts doubt the effectiveness of it. MLB folks point out they're spending big on research for an HGH urine test and that the Olympics has yet to catch a single athlete using HGH with its own blood test. Of course, that discounts the idea that a test still could provide a deterrent.

It's reasonable to assume that now that cheaters' choices are limited, more players might turn to HGH, the 46th and last banned substance on MLB's drug policy, which Newsday obtained. The problem is, to get caught with HGH, a player would have to be really stupid, incredibly unlucky or, likely, both. Barring being pinched by the feds, he'd probably have to be caught with the needle.

"Now if these guys are big and they can't take steroids, then how are they still as big?" steroids expert and necessary MLB irritant Gary Wadler asked rhetorically. "HGH probably isn't as effective as steroids, but it's somewhat effective. Since they're not going to test for it, it's a field day. Everyone can take human growth hormone.

"[Baseball] is saying, 'We're going to invest some money in UCLA and it's going to pay dividends years from now. And by the way, don't get caught injecting yourself."'

According to the club official, because "HGH is expensive and players are predominantly cheap," it led them to devise ways to save the leftovers after their bathroom injection sessions. After injecting themselves with HGH before long team flights, cheaters often would carry what remained in a soft-drink cup with ice and put another cup on top to hide the drug, the club official said. Because opened HGH must be kept cold, they'd store the vials adjacent to ice packs inside boxes containing video equipment.

The baseball doctor suspects cheating will be down -- for a little while, anyway. "A lot of guys are very, very afraid because they don't want to suffer the embarrassment of a failed test," the doctor said. "But they'll wait for guys to get away with it. Once the dust settles, they'll start in again.

"There's going to be a drop in numbers for a little while. And the numbers will start to creep up again. They just have to learn the process, like the NFL and the Olympics. There is no such thing as a perfect test."

But baseball's policy needs to be more perfect than it is.

"Major League Baseball can't put its head in the sand and do a sound-bite press conference and say everything's going to be fine," Wadler said. "Everything's not fine."

registerthis
03-31-2006, 12:12 PM
Bonds makes T.O. look like an angel.

No, the eagles had just seen enough and sent him packing early. the Giants eat up every bit of the controversy Bonds brings. good for ticket sales, and all that.

savafan
03-31-2006, 12:21 PM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/03/30/AR2006033001037.html

Selig refused to speculate on potential consequences of the investigation, including the possibility of suspensions -- which almost certainly would be met with stiff resistance from the union -- or how he might compel cooperation from players who are not interested in speaking to Mitchell's investigators.

MLB President Robert DuPuy said the "best interests of the game" power wielded by the commissioner's office includes "the ability to compel all . . . personnel -- players, executives, owners, et cetera -- to participate. That's part of the commissioner's broad powers as the CEO of the game."

However, Selig is unlikely to invoke the "best interests of the game" power to suspend players implicated in the investigation -- particularly those found to have used steroids before 2003, when baseball's first testing program went into effect -- according to a person with knowledge of Selig's thinking, because baseball's lawyers have determined such a move might not withstand a challenge from the players' union.

Chip R
03-31-2006, 01:23 PM
No, the eagles had just seen enough and sent him packing early. the Giants eat up every bit of the controversy Bonds brings. good for ticket sales, and all that.

Yeah, but at least T.O. is media friendly. He gets more of a pass than Bonds does because of that.