Sandberg: Sosa doesn't belong in HallComment Email Print Share ESPNChicago.com
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Ryne Sandberg and Bruce Sutter join "Waddle & Silvy" to reminisce about "The Sandberg Game," which occurred 25 years ago today on June 23, 1984. Sandberg also discusses whether Sammy Sosa belongs in the Hall of Fame.
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Chicago Cubs Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg said his former teammate Sammy Sosa does not belong in the Hall because of integrity issues associated with the steroids era.
The New York Times reported that Sosa was one of the 104 players in 2003 who tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs.
Appearing on the "Waddle & Silvy" show on ESPN 1000, Sandberg said "I don't think so," when asked if Sosa belongs in the Hall of Fame.
"They use the word 'integrity' in describing a Hall of Famer in the logo of the Hall of Fame, and I think there are gonna be quite a few players that are not going to get in," Sandberg said. "It's been evident with the sportswriters who vote them in, with what they've done with Mark McGwire getting in the 20 percent range.
"We have some other players coming up like [Rafael] Palmeiro coming up soon, and it'll be up to the sportswriters to speak loud and clear about that. I don't see any of those guys getting in."
Sandberg and Sosa were Cubs teammates from 1992 to '94 and from '96 to '97.
"I was around Sammy for about five years before I retired, and there wasn't anything going on then," Sandberg said. "I did admire the hard work he put in. He was one of the first guys down to the batting cage, hitting extra. I figured he was working out hard in the offseason to get bigger. It was just happening throughout the game, that even myself was blinded by what was really happening, maybe starting in the '98 season.
"I think it's very unfortunate. I think suspicions were there as they are with some other players. Those players are now put in a category of being tainted players with tainted stats. I think it's obviously something that was going on in the game. Players participated in it and as the names have come out I think that they will be punished for that."
Sandberg said that punishment should include being banned from Cooperstown.
"It's something that's against the law and against society," Sandberg said. "It was cheating in the sport.
"I think it has to be spoken very loud and clear on the stance, and baseball needs to stand as they have. I'm very, very satisfied with the testing program they have in place now. For a guy who's tested positive today under what happens now like Manny Ramirez, it almost takes an idiot to participate in that. For the society, for the up-and-coming players and youth out there, I don't think those guys should be recognized at all."