THE INEVITABLE A-ROD POST.
Since I write about baseball, I either have to Say Something about Alex Rodriguez, or make the point that I am not saying anything about it.
I will confess that when the news was first announced, I was doing the kind of happy dance that one does when one discovers that one’s enemy is mortal, like some kind of elf in a fairy tale. I quickly moved on to not caring, brought on by media fatigue: it was either everyone saying the same thing in a different way, or it was MLB (and Boras) spin control on overdrive. I found the spin to be utterly distasteful. I found it insulting to my intelligence in the extreme.
Some people want asterisks; some people just patently don’t believe him; other people feel betrayed. I have already written about why I do not like Alex Rodriguez (hint: I lived in Seattle for 9 years), so I will not bore you with it again. (You need to read the comments on that link to get the full story.)
I cannot find it now (I think the post got taken down, maybe it was up prematurely) but a sportswriter I admire posited that the entire issue boils down to the fact that A-rod just wants to be loved.
He wasn’t offering it as an excuse, but just an explanation. My problem is, if A-rod really wanted to be loved, he just would have stayed in Seattle. If he had stayed in Seattle he would have been a hero, on the level that Griffey and Edgar Martinez are heroes in Seattle – Edgar has a STREET named after him. But he didn’t.
Alex could have had adulation and achievement and anything he wanted in Seattle. He made other decisions. I do not feel sorry for him, one iota. I do not believe he did not know what he was doing. I do not believe he was not aware of exactly what he was taking (I don’t buy that from anyone, including players I love and admire, like Mike Cameron). I do not believe that he was misled, or got bad advice. I believe that he knew what he was doing and actively chose to ingest substances that he believed were going to give him an advantage.
I also believe that he knew what he was doing was wrong. And this is why I do not feel sorry for Alex Rodriguez.
I do, however, feel sorry for baseball. I feel sorry for Carlos Delgado, I feel sorry for the guys who don’t take PED’s and then watch others pass them by, I feel sorry for the guys who don’t take PED’s and find their careers cut short, I feel sorry for the kids who think that cheating is the only way to make it to the top, I feel sorry for the adults who have the job of trying to explain things to them.
Some good reading on the subject: