My Morning in Exile

Things I wrote while struggling to come up with any ballplayer who, if implicated as a PED user, would truly surprise me. Maddux, maybe. Bob Horner. Lolich.

  • Sammy Sosa: the leaking is way worse than the ‘roiding.
  • A roundup of Sosa opinion in the greater blogosphere.
  • Rizzo says that Manny Acta is the Nats’ “current” manager. If you think that’s a vote of confidence, call the woman you love your “current” wife or “current” girlfriend and see how that works out for you.
  • Johan Santana’s knee is just fine, thank you.
  • Finally, baseball is held to a higher PED standard than football, and I’m not sure I have a problem with that.

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    bigcatasroma
    Guest
    bigcatasroma
    Craig, one thing that has been bothering me today.  Driving yesterday here in Philadelphia, and listening to a yahoo like Howard Eskin lambaste Sosa for PEDs and what have you, made me realize – is there outrage for the THIRTY DAY sentence of Donte Stallworth????  Look, I, like you, am NOT a fan of the great American fallacy that is football, so God knows I hate talking about it.  But, seriously, THIRTY DAYS???  For DRIVING DRUNK AND KILLING SOMEONE’S MOM????  And the rest of the moralists in the MSM, Eskin to Lupica to whomever, go on phony rants about steroids??? … Read more »
    michael standish
    Guest
    michael standish

    Re Leaking Worse Than ‘Roids:

    The uncharitable among us might ask something like this:

    Would you buy a used car from Bud Selig?

    Owen
    Guest
    Owen

    I love how each name is released one by one, so, those who choose to can get individually outraged by each “revelation.” I know it’s hard to be totally consistent on where you place your anger, but is this 1) a surprise? 2) in light of the last few years, a big deal? or 3) a bigger deal than, well, anything else that made the news today?

    Eddo
    Guest
    Eddo

    Craig,

    What was the point of quoting that ridiculous post implying that Sosa’s leak was somehow a result of Obama’s White Sox fandom?  I read the full article/post, and it didn’t seem to be satire.

    Craig Calcaterra
    Guest
    Craig Calcaterra

    Eddo—When I do a “what they’re saying about” post over there it’s merely to show the disparate sorts of reactions people have to a breaking news story.

    That said, you didn’t take that as satire?  It’s a Cubs fan (from what I gather) basically writing that there’s a vast White Sox conspiracy, headed by the President of the United States.  I thought that was hilarious, and by no means took it seriously on its face.

    Eddo
    Guest
    Eddo

    Craig,

    I skimmed over the update section, where the author says he’s just kidding Sox fans and Obama, so there’s that.  However, the tone still led me to believe that there was some truth to what the author was saying, at least in his eyes.

    Or perhaps my satire-detector is off this morning raspberry

    MFG
    Guest
    MFG

    Player who, if implicated of PED use, would truly surprise me: Kent Hrbek.

    Jack Marshall
    Guest
    Jack Marshall
    Ok, Craig, riddle me this: if the leaking is really worse than the steroiding (I’m not sure I agree, but it’s bad enough), then how can those “responsible journalists,” who make sure the leaked info is published and thus does the maximum harm, be blameless and admirable professionals? How can an act be wrong but the individuals who must aid, abet and complete the act for it to have any effect be seen not only as doing their jobs, but as providing a public service? The leakers could do no damage at all…in fact, they couldn’t leak!…if reporters said, “Nope,… Read more »
    Craig Calcaterra
    Guest
    Craig Calcaterra
    You’re everywhere today, Jack!  You’re like Rodman in his prime! I’d answer your question by saying that the reporters are not party to any court order sealing this information.  The names of the steroid users are not part of some Official Secrets Act rendering the information, in and of itself, illegal to know.  As is the case with grand jury testimony, the relevant orders apply to those who are privileged to know the information.  Once they leak it, its out there. This would be different if the reporter independently broke a law to obtain the information, but that’s not been… Read more »
    Jack Marshall
    Guest
    Jack Marshall
    I do feel like I’m harassing you today, but you are being especially provocative… But Craig, doesn’t your lawyeresque answer duck the question? I know it’s not illegal to publish information like this, but it can’t be right, either. Essentially, this is information/confidence laundering, isn’t it? Again: how can the journalist that activates the harm in the leak be blameless if the leaker is, as you say, “worse than” the steroid-user? On the reporting question, I do think your law license triggers a higher standard, but I am absolutely sure that if you went ahead and published the leak, no… Read more »
    Craig Calcaterra
    Guest
    Craig Calcaterra
    If I wasn’t being provocative I wouldn’t be doing my job . . . See, I don’t think the reporter “activates” or “implicates” or “abets” or whatevers the wrong here.  The reporter is a surrogate for the public at large. No matter what J-school students think, reporters have no special rights that a citizen doesn’t have, but they likewise have no special responsibility.  Sure, a reporter disseminates the information in a particularly effective way, but a reporter is just the public, and once sealed information is leaked to the public, it’s out there. And course, to the extent there is… Read more »
    Jack Marshall
    Guest
    Jack Marshall
    But we know that’s not true. The journalist applies filters all the time. I don’t think the New York Times has to publish troop movements…it exercises discretion. Your construct only works if the journalist is acting like a public bulletin board, but he’s not. In my book, the SF Chronicle reporters should have returned the Grand Jury proceedings to the Court. We had no “right” to see them, and I feel the same way about the release of A-Rod’s and Sammy’s test results. The press as a surrogate for the public at large is a great off-topic debate that I’d… Read more »
    DGL
    Guest
    DGL

    Player who, if implicated of PED use, would truly surprise me: Tim Wakefield.

    Craig Calcaterra
    Guest
    Craig Calcaterra
    But there’s a difference between troop movements and drug test results. The former, presumably, is a matter of national security and the information itself is deemed secret or top secret or some other designation.  I am not, as a matter of legal course, allowed to know where General Sherman is marching his troops (or what the spy sattelite is looking at or the launch codes to the Minuteman Missles).  This information is not not published because of discretion, it’s not published because it’s subject to legal protection. The drug test information is only confidential because a court deemed that persons… Read more »
    michael standish
    Guest
    michael standish

    Re your 3:03 PM post, I do think that “confounds the expectations they [the 100+ players who were assured of confidentiality]had” is an overly generous description of what I’d call “rank betrayal,” hence my remark above about used cars (which I’d like to revise: it should now read “Quien es muy macho? Bud Selig or Richard Nixon?”).

    Tom
    Guest
    Tom
    Hate to sound jaded, but I no longer care if Sosa, Big Mac, Palmiero, A-Rod, Bonds , etc, did PED’s or whether or not they are HoF worthy. Fergie Jenkins—convicted of trafficking, HoF Willie McCovey—convicted tax evasion or fraud, HoF, same with Duke Snider. If there is reason to pursue an investigation, turn it over to a Grand Jury and law enforcement, opinions and hearsay are, in my opinion, piss pore efforts to boost ratings or reporter stature. We the fans are guitly as well, we just want the excitement and the great numbers, be honest, we all suspected the… Read more »
    Jack Marshall
    Guest
    Jack Marshall

    Yeah, Tom, you do sound jaded, and also less than discriminating. There’s a big difference between what a player does off the field, unrelated to baseball, and the rules he breaks that affect the game itself, its stats, reputations, and who gets roster spots. And the Hall of Fame standard is separate from either. If you really don’t see the critical distinctions between cheating on taxes and cheating to set home run records, then this is probably a controversy you should sit out.

    Jack Marshall
    Guest
    Jack Marshall
    Blackadder: Every profession defines what “character” means in the context of its specific needs and culture. For example, although all states require lawyers to be “of good moral character,” they generally limit what would be bad moral character to breaking the law, cheating in school, getting kicked out of the army and not paying debts—-because of what lawyers do and what they have to be trusted to do. (There is a porn star and part-time Nev. prostitute currently in law school, and she will be admitted to any bar she chooses.) The character clause in the Hall requirements should similarly… Read more »
    Jack Marshall
    Guest
    Jack Marshall
    Congrats, Kurt, that’s one of my three least favorite rationalizations for cheating. Yet somehow, when it turns out that a high-priced professor, executive or judge has fabricated credentials, honors or jobs on the CV (e.g. “cheated”), he or she gets canned in disgrace, and nobody says, “But look: they were still really smart, accomplished and talented!” And when a Nobel prize candidate admits he fabricated his research results, nobody says, “Well, but he’s obviously brilliant anyway: do you doubt that he could have done the study without fabricating results?” What is it about the concept of having consequences for cheating… Read more »
    Blackadder
    Guest
    Blackadder
    Hall of Fame guidelines dictate “Voting shall be based upon the player’s record, playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to the team(s) on which the player played.”  The “soft” factors are integrity, sportsmanship, and character.  Off-field issues can certainly bear on one’s judgment of a player’s character and integrity, and sometimes his sportsmanship as well.  So someone taking the “character clause” seriously should certainly consider off-field actions.  Now, historically, voters have—in my opinion, to their credit—ignored the character clause.  But if they have decided to take it seriously now, as it appears they are, then they should consider all… Read more »
    kurt a ehrsam
    Guest
    kurt a ehrsam

    If Sammy wants to clear his name, he’s free to bring a defamation suit against the reporters who broke the story. As Craig says, there’s no reason for the reporters to respect the gag order, as they’re not parties to it.

    Sosa hit over 600 home runs in the major leagues. Suppose ‘roids added 50 of those. Does anyone seriously think that he isn’t a Hall of Fame talent because of that?

    Gerry
    Guest
    Gerry

    “call the woman you love your “current” wife or “current” girlfriend and see how that works out for you.”

    I often call my wife my “ex-fiance” or “former girlfriend” and she doesn’t seem to mind.

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