Is A-Rod taking the fall for 103 players?

Here are what some of the experts have said about the news of Alex Rodriguez confessing he used steroids:

I took this from the AP on Comcast, don’t think I went out and did research, I don’t deserve that much credit.

President Barack Obama
: I think it’s depressing news on top of what’s been a flurry of depressing items when it comes to Major League Baseball. And if you’re a fan of Major League Baseball, I think it tarnishes an entire era, to some degree. And it’s unfortuante, becauseI think there were a lot of ballplayers who played it straight. And, you know, the thing I’m probably most concerned about is the message that it sends to our kids. What I’m pleased about is Major League Baseball seems to finally be taking this seriously, to recognize how big of a problem this is for the sport, and that our kids hopefully are watching and saying: you know what? There are no shortcuts. That when you try to take shortcuts, you may end up tarnishing your entire career, and that your integrity’s not worth it. That’s the message I hope is communicated.

Tom Hicks, Texas Rangers owner: This whole episode has caught me totally by surprise. I feel personally betrayed, I feel deceived by Alex.

Rich Hofman, Rodriguez’s high school baseball coach: I’m sad for him, because I kno wwhat it’s going to do for him, and what he has to carry with him, what he’s going to have to put up with for the rest of his life. It’s something you can’t take an eraser to. Now it becomes part of your history.

Curt Schilling: He’s fricking human, he made a horrible choice and he’ll have to deal with it. Do whatever you want, speculate on whatever you want but the guy ‘manned up,’ admitted his mistake, that’s enough for me. Nothing we can do about it at this point but move on as fans and players. I still believe the names of all the positives should be released. That the media chose to only ‘out’ him is a crime in and of itself.

Pete Rose: I was a little disappointed in that because A-Rod will
probably be the player of the decade in the 2000s, and the player of
the decade probably for the 90s is Ken Griffey Jr. And I’ve just never
heard those two guys linked to any kind of enhancement as far as drugs
are concerned. So I was a little surprised that A-Rod did that in 2001,
2002, and 2003. I don’t want to listen to all this B.S. on ESPN about
how he was a kid and didn’t know what he was doing and stuff like that.
I mean, you did it. You admitted it. Go on with your life.

Joe Torre: We all hope that this information that has come out is going
to benefit the game of baseball in the long run. It blindsided me and
it was so widespread. We all have to take blame for this. I had never
really heard anything in connection to him. When you watch his work
ethic, the time he puts in at batting practice and in the weight room,
I had no reason to question him. He was the most ability of any player
I’ve seen. It’s going to be tough for him but I’m happy that he came
out, faced the music, and took responsibility for it.

New York Yankees statement: We strongly believe there is no place in
baseball for performance-enhancing drugs of any type, and we support
the efforts of the commissioner to continually improve the testing
process. We urged Alex to be completely open, honest and forthcoming in
addressing his use of performance-enhancing drugs. We take him at his
word that he was. Although we are disappointed in the mistake he spoke
to today, we realize that Alex – like all of us – is a human being not
immune to fault. We speak often about the members of this organization
being part of a family, and that is never more true than in times of
adversity. Alex took a big step by admitting his mistake, and while
there is no condoning the use of performance-enhancing drugs, we
respect his decision to take accountability for his actions. We support
Alex, and we will do everything we can to help him deal with this
challenge and prepare for the upcoming season.

Right now, the world is disappointed, heartbroken, angry, and betrayed by this confession from Alex Rodriguez. I know I am.

untitled.JPGI tried to look disappointed when I took it, but I didn’t know how to do that except by kind of looking down and then it looked like my eyes were closed, ya know, I’m asian, and I didn’t want people to think that I was sleeping over the story. So, I just ended up looking straight ahead, but there’s meant to be disappointment there.

I started thinking about Alex’s confession, I dwelled upon it. This morning, I didn’t want to get out of bed, I laid there for a while, and then finally decided that I wasn’t going to accomplish anything by laying in bed thinking about it. But I think that this news has actually… well… slightly depressed me. I mean, I’m literally depressed about this situation and about baseball.

These days, people seem to use the words “depressed” and “clinically depressed” interchangeably. I’d like to say that the two are very different, and at this point, my feelings come more from the second one.

I thought for a long time about one of the best names in history and what he had done for this great game. I never really liked A-Rod, but I respected him as a player. He was one of the best, his contract reflected it. I mean, no one would pay me $275 million to play ball because I suck. This statement made me lose a lot of respect for him, a lot. Using steroids is just… I don’t even know how to describe how negatively I feel toward it.

There was part of me that gained respect for A-Rod as a person, for a time. Let me explain. Rather than taking the Barry Bonds approach, Alex Rodriguez stepped up and admitted his mistake. Rather than taking the Jason Giambi approach, Alex Rodriguez actually said, “yes, I used performance enhancers.” And he could’ve just said it was in 2003, instead he admitted that he had used for three years. Part of me thought, hmm… these gestures by Alex are almost… respectable. Almost.

Then I started thinking about other things. In fact, Jay Mariotti pointed them out to me on Around the Horn. But first, let me ask, what the heck is Lil Wayne doing on the show?!?! I mean, I know he writes a blog of something for ESPN, but, he’s not very good on Around the Horn.

Anyway, Jay Mariotti asked this: He felt the pressure when he was with the Rangers, but not when he went to the Yankees?

Really? In 2003 the Rangers finished fourth in the AL West. Alex Rodriguez felt pressure to compete with that team, but not when he went to what is considered the best club in all of major league? In the year 2003, the Yankees finished first in the AL East. Wouldn’t you feel more pressure with the Yankees?

When I went to check my e-mail, I read an article talking about Alex Rodriguez, and I started realizing, this guy was actually describing exactly how I felt respect towards A-Rod. While part of me is so mad about the use of drugs, the other part of me is wondering why his name was the only one leaked. So, I’d like to leave you with some things that he wrote that made me think. HIs name is Lee Russakoff, and he’s asking about the integrity in baseball:

I wonder: Are integrity and success in professional sports mutually exclusive?

Think
about it. How else can you explain the silence of the 103 players out
there whose names are still under seal? How else can you account for
the inaction of the countless others who took banned substances at some
point in their careers?

No one….not a soul…has stepped up on his own and admitted his mistake.

Sure, Andy Pettitte came clean …once he got caught.

Jason Giambi came clean…once he got caught.

A-Rod said the one thing he’s proud of is being “forthright about my own situation.”

Yea, forthright…once he got caught...

If you knew you were dirty, why would you risk being outed by the media,
the players union or the government? Why risk the snowball of negative
press when coming forward voluntarily and completely would gain you a
rainbow of positive press.

You’d be the guy who willingly chose
honor. The guy who willingly chose the integrity of the game over the
integrity of your legacy. The guy who willingly told the truth when no
one else would.

And America would love you for it.

Because being an honorable man isn’t about always making the right choice. No human being always makes the right choice.

Being an honorable man is about owning up to your mistakes and atoning for your sins.

And right now, the sport of baseball is batting 0-for-104 on that playing field.

His last thought is the one that made me think most. It’s combined with Obama’s thought that this entire era will forever be tainted:

Baseball needs a leader. The entire sports world needs a leader.
Someone who never used steroids can come out and try to be that guy.
But he’ll fail. Because we won’t believe him. At least not entirely.
The taint of steroids is all over every player of this era–be he clean
or not.

6 Comments

Emily,
You’re right– this is depressing. And I was thinking the same thing. Would he have really confessed once he got caught? Of course not. He had been lying for years! Nice quotes from everyone, it was great to see some different perspectives. I would think that he would feel more pressure with the Yankees as well.
-Elizabeth
http://redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

Regarding Lil Wayne: I was so confused! He kinda knows his stuff, but he doesn’t have “it” when it comes to the show. That said, as much as I utterly despise Jay Mariotti because he’s usually a moron and more often than not makes me use words that would turn into asterisks on MLBlogs, I have to agree with him. Why would A-Rod feel more pressure with the Rangers than with the Yankees? Some people I know who are newer baseball fans don’t even KNOW the Rangers. But everyone knows the Yankees.
Jen
http://ajroxmywhitesox.mlblogs.com

Emily – this is such a sad time for baseball. Yeah A-Rod admitted it, but like you said AFTER he got caught. And I am with Jen – how the heck do you fell pressure in Texas and NOT in NY? I don’t think we have heard the whole story here!

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

He was trying to get ahead of the story and decided to blame the media and youth and I think had the interview gone on any longer he would have blamed something else.
Tom
http://rockymountainway.mlblogs.com

Depressed means clinically depressed. People use “sad” and “depressed” interchangeably…it annoys me. Does it annoy you?
http://imbringingdiamondback.mlblogs.com

Elizabeth- Despite A-Rod being like, “at the time, I didn’t know…” I mean, that’s kind of a load. You wouldn’t just be putting something in your body if you had no idea what it was.
Jen- I always yell at Woody Paige. There was one point where he wanted the World Series to be moved to Hawaii, and I was like WHAT?!?!
Julia- For me, this is one of the saddest times for baseball. But, there’s this belief that it’s always darkest before the dawn.
Tom- I’m sure A-Rod thought his answers were thought out, but it really just sounded like BS.
Xcicx- I think when it comes to the words sad, depressed, and clinically depressed, it is kind of like the transitive property. I hope I’m thinking of the right property.

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