Trying to bring a little common sense to the game of baseball. But considering many of the people who read baseball blogs, I'm probably just pissing into the wind.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Cherry Picking our Moral Outrage

With the issue of steroid use rampant in MLB right now, a lot of people have left the flatlands and taken the moral high ground. They are outraged at the fact that their game has been defiled by the likes of Alex Rodriguez, Rafael Palmeiro, Sammy Sosa and Miguel Tejada, to name a few. Fans can’t stand the fact that their childhood heroes, who have had their career and season records eclipsed by these monsters, now have to take a backseat to these demons. Its even worse that they are allowed to hold those same records, and still retain the hardware they won.

The players today have injected, inhaled, and rubbed all manners of immoral, unethical, and devious substances in order to achieve an advantage over their peers. They have artificially enhanced their abilities in an effort to defraud the entire American public, and destroy the very fabric of American life. We haven’t witnessed an assault of this nature since the days of McCarthyism. Actually, I didn’t witness it, but I’m sure the hysteria is the same.

That fact that these evildoers have used illegal substances to increase their stamina, durability, reduce their injury time, and prolong their careers is an affront to every red-blooded American, especially if you’re a sports writer for a main stream sports/news organization. I think it’s wrong, I think it’s a sacrilege and an abomination (just like the DH), and I for one, will gladly ascend the heights to plant my flag on the moral high ground.

So, in an effort to right all past wrongs, and make sure the game is as returned to the purity and saintliness of bygone era’s, we will ascend the moral high ground, look down on those below us, and cast out the wayward souls who have sullied our national past-time.

So, all you steroid users, you’re out. Tejada, Rodriguez, you’re gone. Not just your records and trophies banished, but you also. You’re out the game. That’s the only way we have to ensure the game is never defiled again. Banishment is the only answer. It doesn’t matter that you tested positive when it wasn’t illegal. You did, so you’re gone. Lifetime suspension for any player caught. It’s harsh, I know, but you brought it upon yourselves. You volunteered to take a test that you didn’t have to take, and you came up hot. You’re out. Palmeiro, you too.

But we’re not done. McGwire, Sosa. Bye. No chance at the Hall for you. We ‘know’ you used illegal substances. It doesn’t matter if you never actually came up hot on a test. We know. And since we’re taking the moral high ground and being sanctimonious, we don’t require proof. Just shred you’re Hall speech. You’re not getting in. Oh, by the way, it doesn’t matter that the substances you ‘took’ weren’t actually illegal. Because they weren’t. They were ‘banned’ by MLB, which isn’t the same as illegal. But the moral high ground allows us to declare you guilty.

But we’re not through, oh no, not by a long shot. We’re not going to just inhabit the moral foothills. We climbing all the way to the top and cresting this high ground. We’re judging everyone. So anyone who used anything to artificially increase their career, or help themselves return from injury, you’re out also. Because it might not have been ‘illegal’, but it wasn’t natural, and it gave you an unfair advantage over the clean players. We can’t have that. There isn’t enough room on the peak of the moral high ground for questionable players. So only the truly honest players are allowed up here. So let’s see who else is banished forever.

Did you use cortisone shots? Sorry, you’re out. That’s probably half the players in the expansion era, but it doesn’t matter. Cortisone is an unnatural substance injected into the body to mask pain. It doesn’t actually heal anything; it just hides the pain and lets the player perform at a higher level than he might have otherwise. That sounds familiar, but it doesn’t matter. On the moral high ground, there is no room for compromise. Had a cortisone shot? You’re out.

Had Lazik eye surgery? You’re gone. Denard Span, Tony Pena, Jr. You might as well pack your bags. You’re not allowed to play my game anymore. It’s an unnatural procedure that gives you an unfair advantage over players who haven’t had it. Doesn’t matter if MLB said it was all right, or there was no test for it. We’re on the moral high ground, and you screwed up. Can’t exclude one for a particular reason, and then let another stay. That would be hypocritical, and we can’t have that in American sports.

Knee surgery? Sorry. Bye. I’ve had reconstructive knee surgery, even though I was told I could still have good quality of life without it. But I wanted to play ball, so I had it done. An entirely unnecessary procedure only used to help prolong a playing career. Entirely unnatural. Manny Ramirez, you’re gone. Mickey Mantle, your plaque at the Hall comes down. Don’t like it? Tough. Moral, meet high ground.

Elbow/shoulder surgery? Too bad. Tommy John, John Smotlz, you’ve kissed you’re Hall chances away.
By the way, all you guys above, I want my MVP, CY Young’s, and all other awards returned. I will arbitrarily decide who gets them, from among those players left.

But we can’t just stop there. From the moral high ground, we can see both sides of the mountain. Not only can we see who has done something unnatural to increase their abilities and careers, but we can see the other side of the equation. Since all those players broke an unwritten code of ethics by taking illegal substances (even though they weren’t), we have to look at those with a deviant lifestyle as well. Because here on the moral high ground, we’re not going to cherry pick our outrage, we’re going to being fair and objective. Don’t play by my rules, you’re out.

So did you use those ‘greenies’ back in the 60’s? Yeah, I’m talking to you, Willie Mays and Hank Aaron. Don’t ever want to see your faces again. You used something illegal. That actually was illegal. Bye.
Used cocaine? Dave Parker, Keith Hernandez. Time to fade away into oblivion. You’re dirty, you’re guilty, and you’re out.

Been arrested for a crime? Bret Myers, Wil Cordero. You’re names will be expunged from the rolls. Doesn’t matter if you were ever convicted or not. Guilt or innocence is not an issue. We’re on the moral high ground.

Been accused of throwing a game? Ty Cobb, Tris Speaker, Smokey Joe. You’re stats don’t count. Seems as they have other issues. If they weren’t suspended, they’re still out. They were accused, and here on the moral high ground, that’s all we need.

Ever shown up at work with alcohol in your system? It might not be illegal, but we’ve already established we’re not concerned about that. If I were to show up to work with a hangover every day, or drink on the job, my boss would surely send me on my way. And since we are here to preserve American values, we like this one also. So Babe Ruth and Pete Alexander. Nice knowing you, but you’re irrelevant now.

But let’s not just stop there. There are so many more peaks of the morale high ground we can climb. Tony Oliva, you used your brother’s passport. That’s illegal, and you misrepresented yourself. I’m sure we can find others that are just as evil as you are.

As we stand here on the high ground and look down on the others, all we have left is the people who played the game purely. The ones who didn’t cheat or desecrate the game in one of the ways listed above. Anyone want to guess how many there are left? Do you think we could even get in a complete season with 30 teams?  But does it matter? Because we’ve purified the game. We have gotten rid of the interlopers who made a mockery of it. It’s clean and pristine. 

Here on the moral high ground, we’re happy. We’ve cleaned up the game. The only problem is it’s a little crowed. But only because we’re sharing it with our neighbor who abuses his family. But it’s not our problem and we don’t want to get involved. And next to him is the guy down the street, who we just know is selling something (if you know what I mean), but it’s not our problem. He’s not bothering us. And next to him is the relative who cheats on their taxes every year, but hey, it’s family. And other side is our buddy Bob, who cheats on his wife, but I’m okay with it, because it’s his life. And next to him is the guy from work who goes to happy hour every night and then drives home. But it’s not our problem. He doesn’t live far and he always makes it.

None of those things are important, however, because we’re fixing baseball. What happens in real life doesn’t concern us. What happens in baseball? Oh, yeah, we’re all over it. And here on the moral high ground, we actually do get to cherry pick our moral outrage.


  1. 2 things:
    1) The designated hitter rule is the best thing to happen to baseball since the infield fly rule.

    2) No mention of Pete Rose. Is he lost in the immorality crowd, and you just didn't see him?

    Next time Ron, don't hold back, tell us what you really think. Show some spirit!!!
    Nice post, Kevin

  2. Kevin, Pete Rose is banned, therefore, under MLB rules, he is not eligible to be blacklisted here.

    Please seek help for your designated hitter issues. There are professionals standing by.