I’m still upset about this A-Rod thing. The past few days haven’t done anything to ease the frustration of having Bud Selig, who watched the biceps of his best players swell along with average attendance, declare that Rodriguez ‘shamed the game.’ Is the act of putting performance enhancers in your body to compete with the hundreds of other players that put performance enhancers in their bodies any more shameful than turning a blind eye to it until memories of the baseball strike faded? Is that act more shameful than faking outrage once he realized that the fans were back? The men that returned the crowds to baseball were coursing with banned substances. People knew. Staffers knew. The commissioner’s office knew. They must have known. They’re not stupid – far from it. They’re smarter than all of us. Think of it this way: we’re all disgusted, but we’re talking about it. I’m talking about it right now. Heck, I just set my keepers in my fantasy baseball league. We’re complaining about this steroid issue the same way we complain about U.S. foreign policy. We’re disappointed, but we’re not going anywhere.
When will it end? When will the stories about baseball be about baseball again? I wish I had an answer for that. I think this season is shot. The hundred plus names on that report that mentioned A-Rod is coming out this year, no doubt about it. There will be a lot of outrage and the season will essentially be a washout. Right now, we’ve got a whole spring training, regular season, and postseason that will be absolutely, totally dominated by talk of steroids first and play on the field second. So prepare for that. And be angry. You have every right to be.
We’re really got two options for this upcoming season. We can view it with a bit of distance and skepticism, or we can ignore it totally. I don’t know of any real fans that are doing the second. So in that respect we’re as much to blame as Selig or BALCO or anyone else. We’re not going to boycott. We’re going to pay $100 for tickets like always and then, if we have time, make up a clever sign with a syringe on it that might get up on television. We’re part of the monster, so we better feel bad as we keep tuning in to SportsCenter to track allegations. As a sports fan, you owe it to the Gods to feel bad.
So we’re angry and we’re guilty. Let’s just make sure that’s taken care of before we even think about talking about the season. Maybe next week is when I start hoping that the Yankees pitching staff is healthy. Maybe the week after is when I think about my fantasy draft. I’m not ready for any of that yet. I hope I will be soon. I hope you all will be too.