MLB cracks down on biggest steroid scandal of the decade
Just when the memories of Alex Rodriguez’s famous “I was young and stupid,” and Ryan Braun’s miraculous evasion of a 50-game drug suspension have faded, our hearts are once again ripped out as the biggest steroid scandal since the Mitchell Report has broken through and completely shaken the MLB.
Bud Selig made it a one-man mission to clean up baseball, going so far as to write an open letter to the fans.
“And I will try to do everything I can to keep up with or even stay ahead of those who break the law and break our rules.” Selig wrote. “But I suspect that there will always be a few players, who seek new ways to violate the rules, no matter how many we have and how often we toughen them. I also know that science can find new ways to combat them and I will rely on our experts to keep on top of the science as it develops.”
In a game fraught with cheaters, and it seemed like he had done his job. Legends like Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens were shut out of the Hall of Fame faster than you can say “cheater,” and so it seemed that baseball was back on the right track, where a 40 home run season was a feat of excellence, not a concoction in a lab.
Fast forward to the recent reports surrounding an anti-aging clinic in Florida, the MLB shut down the biogenesis lab a while ago due to links to PED use among athletes who went there. Big names were brought up like Rodriguez and even Robinson Cano, but nothing was certain as the two athletes, and many others, got off. Things are different now though, as the MLB has started to crack down and do some digging. Unfortunately for baseball fans across the country, the news is anything but good.
Straight out of The Godfather, the MLB is sparing no expense as it digs up every last piece of evidence across the country to find out who is connected to the latest scandal. Tony Bosch ran the biogenesis clinic that was shut down by the MLB, but now in return for info on the clients he was, ahem, “servicing”, investigators are willing to drop the lawsuit they threatened him with.
The MLB is now preparing a set of suspensions, some as high as 100 games, once the substantial evidence is released. This very well could be Alex Rodriguez’s exit from baseball, along with the other aging players who have one year at best left in the tank. Right about now they all must be wondering whether it was worth it to cheat just to fight Father Time for one more year.
As of now, your guess is as good as anyone’s to what will happen. There is a long list of names, some of them coded for protection, but the two big ones are Rodriguez and Braun, along with notable players like Melky Cabrera, Bartolo Colon, and Nelson Cruz.
Braun was on hand to speak after Tuesday night’s win, and seems to have mastered the art of ducking the question.
“I’ve already addressed everything related to the Miami situation,” Braun said. “I addressed it in spring training. I will not make any further statements about it. The truth has not changed. I don’t know the specifics of the story that came out today, but I’ve already addressed it, I’ve already commented on it and I will say nothing further about it. I hope you guys can respect that, as I said in spring training.”
Yankees manager Joe Girardi has been on hand as well commenting on Rodriguez’s situation. He seems to have taken a page out of A-Rod’s book, refusing to comment while hoping he can talk his way out of yet another jam.
“We’ll let MLB handle everything and we don’t really have a comment,” Girardi said.
When the first round of steroid charges came up the MLB had no plan of attack, and Bonds and Clemens walked away knowing they had beaten the system. Now after nearly two decades the MLB had better have a plan, or this round of cheaters will get away and countless will follow seeing a clear path to the Hall of Fame at little to no cost. There is some worry though that Bosch’s word might not hold up, since he could just be complying to save himself. Fox Sport’s Ken Rosenthal seems to think so.
“Oh, I can hear others on the players’ side now: ‘Bosch agreed to cooperate with baseball only to save his own rear. He’s broke. He’s talking in order to get baseball to drop its lawsuit against him. He needs the various forms of protection that baseball offered him, according to ESPN.’” Rosenthal wrote.
The whole operation has turned into a witch hunt over night, but if the MLB investigators can pull it off, baseball might just get on the right track. It is not fair to the fans to see a great player stride to the plate, but wonder whether or not such greatness is deserved or concocted somewhere in a seedy lab in south Florida. The days of Babe Ruth and Ted Williams are long over, but some day when baseball is once again clean we just may see a round of bright stars who exhibit true talent and deserve every bit of praise they get. Until then we will just have to wait.
Stay tuned for more updates as plenty is about to be unearthed over the next few weeks. The 2013 season will certainly be an interesting one in baseball history, that is for sure.