GAME CALLED, OR IT SHOULD BE
We’re bleary eyed and weary, tired of hearing about it and wondering, where do we go from here?
In an extensive, not necessarily investigative journalism masterpiece, on 60 Minutes last night former Biogenisis lab owner Anthony Bosch claimed before a national television audience that he was paid $12,000 a month to inject Alex Rodriquez with performance enhancing drugs while developing a program for the Yankees third baseman that would allow him to take drugs right up until shortly before gametime, in the clubhouse and dugout, without being detected. Bosch claimed to have provided Rodriquez with a recipe that would allow him to pass a blood test within a few hours of drug use. He also claimed to have been offered $20,000 dollars a month to leave the country during the Major League Baseball hearings into A-Rod’s appeal of a 211 game suspension, that was reduced to all 162 games and any potential playoff games next season when the arbitrator announced his decision on the appeal on Saturday.
Bosch says he was told he would then recieve another $125,000 dollars when he returned to the country, and claimed a member of the Rodriquez “inner circle” threatened his life if he testified before the hearing. In the face of all this testimony A-Rod, who admitted four years ago to having used P-E-D’s prior to 2004, says he is clean, Major League Baseball is on a witch hunt, and he’s going to take his appeal to federal court.
The chances of the court taking up the matter in the face of a ruling in a process already approved by both Major League Baseball and the players union are slim, but if the court were to act on it, it would allow Rodriquez to subpoena baseball commissioner Bud Selig, who would then be forced to testify, after declining to do so during the hearing.
Interstingly, Bosch claimed drug use in major league baseball was still wide spread, but no one thought to ask him, if he knows that to be true, and, as long as he’s already outed A-Rod, who are the other players he’s had similar experiences with? Amid those allegations Selig, who showed bad form by appearing on the 60 Minutes piece, along with Major League Baseball chief operating officer Rob Manfred, looks at the A-Rod case as the one that will allow him to step away from the game as the man who cleaned it up. In reality, more than A-Rod, more than Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens or Mark McGwire, Selig, with his “look the other way as long as the turnstiles keep spinning” approach, is the man most responsible for baseball’s “steroid era” and should always be remembered as such.
A-Rod has never tested positive and the documents provided by Bosch mention no banned substances, though Bosch says at least a half dozen of them are in there, but in code. Alex may really believe he was treated shabbily by the process but, for everyone’s sake, it’s time for him to take his ball and glove and go home. His reputation is beyond saving, all that’s left to save is the remainder of his contract with the Yankees. While he would still be allowed to attend spring training, the Yankees should take the 25 mil in A-Rod money that comes off their salary cap, use it to fill their starting rotation and tell A-Rod to stay home, even work out a buy out on the remainder of his contract.
We’ve put up with this long enough. One more round of “He said-he said” won’t serve anyone well, most especially not the fans, who are 33 days from pitchers and catchers and just want to get on with baseball.
With a comment from the sports world, I’m Scott Gray.