Sunday, June 28, 2009

17 comments Sunday Blogging While Drinking And Watching Baseball

I'm going to try something a little new today on the blog. If it works, great. If not, then I will scrap it. Heres whats going down: I'm going to post on an article (more on that later) while drinking beer and watching the red sox-braves game. Heres where things get interesting, though. I'm not drinking your standard Budwiser, Coors, or Miller. Oh no, I'm getting serious. I'm gonna be throwing back some 7.3% Molson XXX, baby! So pretty much, once I finish my first two, things should start to get interesting. We'll see how this plays out. And with that, here comes beer #1 (popping top off of bottle with lighter even though they are screw off. )

Alright, I'm just saying this now. I like Jeff Pearlman. I thought "The Rocket That Fell To Earth" was an awesome book. In fact, I read it in one sitting, it was that good. I also like that he is open to criticism. But I'm getting really, really sick of the talk that people that used steroids or any kind of PED would just be some scrub struggling in the minors without any kind of juice. I've known kids that played in HS and took steroids, guess what major league team the play for now? They dont, because they sucked and didnt have the talent with or with out PED to play professionally. I will concede that they will enhance performance, but they will not make Manny Alexander a HOF caliber player, no matter how much he uses. With all that said, I just cant let this slide by.

Steroids are still talked about today because of people like you, Jeff Pearlman. The media keeps shoving how evil they are down our throats. Thats why its still news. I like how there are articles to this day still blasting McGwire, Sosa, Bonds, and Palmeiro, but everything involving Tony La Russa seems to be forgiven and forgotten. Where are the articles going after him? It was only 2 years ago. I think what he did is far worse, and more dangerous than anything the aforementioned players did. The fans are ready to move on from steroids, Mr. Pearlman, please stop writing about them. Also, maybe you guys could stop invading other peoples right to privacy. That would be nice. Okay, on to the article.

It is widely known that performance-enhancing drugs help baseball players.

It sure didnt help the majority of these guys out too much. A better term would be "widely speculated" because I dont think there is an actual study out there that proves that they do enhance performance. If anyone knows of any that I dont know about because I'm too lazy to look it up, please let me know.

Alex Rodriguez is a baseball player.

This is true.

Alex Rodriguez used performance-enhancing drugs.

This is true as well. How did we find out about that, by the way? Oh yeah, by violating court orders. Thats great, isnt it? Off topic, but I think my favorite thing about this whole steroid/balco/ any PED thing is when a supreme court judge asked Jeff Novitsky if the fourth amendment had been repealed. I just think thats awesome. I wonder if there was an awkward silence after?

Alex Rodriguez presumably no longer uses performance-enhancing drugs.

As of Friday morning, Alex Rodriguez is batting .223.

Hmm ...

Dear Jeff Pearlman,

Please stop writing like Bill Plaschke, you are way better than that.

Bottom of the Barrel crew

Okay, I know I'm just a blogger, but you just made a claim that AROD is sucking because he is "presumably" off steroids, yet you fail to mention that he is coming off of a very serious hip injury. Why wouldnt you mention that? I think that is somewhat relevant, dont you? Not to mention he took the less major surgery so he could get back and help his team.

Alright, I'm going off topic again. Does anyone else feel sorry for AROD? I mean, the dude just wanted to be liked. He signed a huge contract because the owner was stupid enough to give him way more than anyone else was offering. Then he tried to restructure his contract so he could go to the red sox, but the union blocked it. After that, he gets traded to the yankees and switches positions--even though he was the far superior player--because the "captain" didnt want his ego hurt. Then the steroids, poor media coverage, choker label, ect....

(Opening 2nd beer)

And yet in the days and weeks since Rodriguez's highly anticipated return to the Yankees' lineup, the media has racked their brains trying to figure out why the All-Star third baseman has morphed into a reenactment of Wayne Krenchicki: The Baltimore Years.

I dont know, maybe the hip injury is nagging him? This is followed by 3 resonable quotes (with one from Steve Phillips. Weird.) Then its followed by this money quote:

Jeff Pearlman, "He's not that good."

I cant believe you just said that. You. Are. Not. That. Stupid. Jeff. Right?

Again, I know. I know. Blasphemy!

Its not blasphemy, its just a stupid statement.

Why is it that, when PED-implicated ballplayers return from lengthy absences, we never ask whether their non-drugged selves will live up to past greatness?

You name me one ball player--PED user or not-- that has come back from a major injury, lengthy suspension, or any kind of long time away from the game, that has come back and picked up where they left off. Off the top of my head I can only think of Ted Williams.

In Los Angeles, the Dodgers anxiously await the July 3 return of Manny Ramirez, who was suspended 50 games for failing a drug test. After initially protesting his guilt, Ramirez slunk off into the abyss -- a guilty man hoping that, with time, all things pass.

I think they have. Judging by the reaction he got from the fans at the Isotopes game, where he was cheered.

At 37, Dale Murphy was batting .143 with no home runs in 26 games with the Rockies. Duke Snider was batting .210 with four homers and 17 RBIs for the San Francisco Giants. Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio and Roger Maris were retired.

At age 37, Ted Williams was batting .345/.479/.605, with 24 HR. What a fucking juicer, that Ted Williams. No man at that age could put up those numbers without using something.

At age 37, Willie Mays was batting .279/.372/.488 with 23 HR, in a shitty hitters homepark. Juicer? Or maybe he was on amphetimines, which he has admitted to using, and are banned by MLB.

Hank Aarons 37 season he batted .327/.410/.669 with 47 HR.

There are just as many examples of players playing well at age 37 as there are ones that are shitty. Those are just the first 3 I looked up. I'm just trying to prove that is possible to play well when you are older without steroids. Hence, all the older HOF players.

Nobody wants to touch this issue, because it's Kryptonite," said Howard Bryant, author of Juicing the Game, the brilliant steroid-era book

Sure they do. Look at this article that you are being quoted for. Look at what happens when you type steroids into google news.

But how do we know players like Manny Ramirez aren't steroid-fueled creations? We don't know anything about why he used or how long he used. But we do know he used. So if he's actually not using, what's really there?"

Yes, because steroids helped to shape mannys picture perfect swing. He had no talent when he was drafted out of HS, he just took some steroids and learned to hit a baseball like no other RH hitter in the game outside of Pujols. What a stupid statement. I'm going to now take some steroids and see if I can make the local independant league baseball team. If that happens, I will buy into the steroids make shitty players good.

When someone like Jason Giambi apologizes for his drug usage, then never recaptures his past greatness, we seek out excuses.

You know who else used PED's? HIS FUCKING BROTHER!!!! Yeah, that was a pretty sweet HOF caliber career he had, wasnt it? He didnt even have any past greatness to get back to.

Thats basically the end of the article, there are a few more sentances, but none I felt needed to be commented on.

Sorry guys. I only made it through 1 1/2 XXX's. I just wasnt feeling it. Maybe next weekend when I dont have to work the next day, I'll try to get reckless and make a blog post. On that note, I'm done with the post. Hope everyone enjoys their Sundays before going back to work tomorrow.


Chris W said...

I had the same thought when I read that article.

Now every fucking superstar slump is going to be attributed to steroids?

Get some fucking perspective, sportswriters. Even though it would make a great story if David Ortiz's two month slump meant he was done as a ballplayer and suggested he "couldn't hit now that steroids is banned", that doesn't make it so. A two month slump is a fucking two month slump.

A-Rod had one of his best years last years--a year when steroids were strictly tested for. But yeah, now that he's coming back late from an injury and having like, a three week slump, it must mean that it's a lack of steroids making him struggle.

Poor, poor, article by Jeff Pearlman, and just another cheap attempt for him to plug his buddy Selena Roberts' book--as if that thing had ANY credibility left.

Fred Trigger said...

well, after that smack down you laid on me in regards to bonds. Fine, I'll concede they enhance performance--espcially in older still have to be good. Like I said, if I used steroids I probably couldnt even make an independant league team, much less a major league team. Thats why when Mr. Pearlman says shit like "AROD isnt that good", it drives me up the wall. JUST FUCKING LET IT GO!!! I just want to enjoy the games. When I talk baseball with my friends steroids almost never comes up. We just talk about the previous nights red sox game. Which i'm pretty sure is what the majority of fans talk about nowadays. They dont worry about steroids until the media writes about it.

Anonymous said...

To answer your question, anabolic steroids have been proven to improve athletic performance (strength and recovery time), but no other substance has been effective in randomized trials. This only takes into account physiologic studies, so the 'proof' would be that all things being equal, a basebell player who is stronger and recovers faster would be better than a weaker player.

I remember someone looked at Barry Bonds' home runs (espn article from a few years ago) that was well written and looked at his home run total from a similar perspective (the added strength, recovery time).

HGH is being looked at, but the data remains equivocal at this point. Supplements like andro, creatinine, etc. do not help athletic performance or recovery.

Bengoodfella said...

Gosh, this pains me because I do really like Jeff Pearlman and I have loved every book he read. I just hope that any slump a slugger may go into is going to be attributed to steroids. Both Ortiz and A-Rod have had some injuries of late and that has to affect them as well. I hope this isn't an attempt to give Selena Roberts' book some more credibility.

Steroids were very strictly tested for last year and A-Rod had a pretty good year. I don't think he is still roiding. I could be wrong though.

Fred, are you saying you think most fans talk about the previous night's Red Sox game? Gosh, you Red Sox fans are so egotistical!

Haha...I am kidding. I know what you are saying. I don't really talk about steroids as much anymore...maybe I should.

Anon, thanks for the information. That's very interesting, and it does make sense that a baseball player who is stronger and recovers faster would be better than a weaker ball player. I wish steroids would just go away.

Fred Trigger said...

haha, yeah, I read that over after I typed it and realized how it sounded, but I figured everyone would know what I was saying.

Bengoodfella said...

Whatever, just another example of Red Sox ego taking over the world. Again, I am kidding...

Though I did over hear a Red Sox fan in front of me at the game say they should trade for Hanley Ramirez and over the Marlins Clay Bucholtz straight up in return. I don't know if that could happen. Of course people at the game actually cheered for Franceour so idiocy runs both ways.

Fred Trigger said...

dont even get me started on those crazy trades.

For all those people out there that want to know why New England sports fans have a bad name, I invite you to go to and listen to their shows (I dont work for them and I'm not trying to give them publicity, but if you listen to some of their callers, you will know why it can be frustrating to be a NE sports fan, with some of the idiots on the radio. During football season, you WILL hear tommy from quincy.)
The lastest obsession is the sox somehow trading for Adrian Gonzalez.

Bengoodfella said...

Every fan base has crazy stupid fans. There is a reason I don't listen to sports talk radio that often. I will try to tune in though Fred and see if I can hear anything exciting. Why would the Sox need Gonzalez though? They have Youk and Lowell...

Fred Trigger said...

I'm telling you, man, you need to listen to the weekly Peter King interviews.

It gets this crazy: would you trade Buchholz straight up for Albert Pujols? One radio host wouldnt, and tried to defend his stance. I'll have to see if I can find it.

Also, people still think we got short ended on the Beckett, Lowell, Mota for Ramirez, Sanchez deal. Even though we won a WS after the trade. I KID YOU NOT. Its really just amusing to listen to, more than anything. I've heard things at work that I want to post on, but I cant, for obvious reasons.

Bengoodfella said...

Please don't tell me that someone actually thinks the Sox got the short end of that deal. You have to be kidding. I could not believe Lowell got included in the deal...he had one bad year and all of a sudden I was considered completely done. I didn't get it. I don't know how you can think you got the short end of the deal. Beckett is one of the best pitchers in baseball. The haul you sent out for him would have almost been good enough for just Beckett, much less Lowell.

Fred Trigger said...

thats why I get frustrated by the New England fan stereotypes. Because people lump us in with what the TAWMMY FROM QUINZEES say. A perfect example is that comment I left a while ago, with the "lunch with brady, or sex with giselle clip" I'm gonna have to find that clip and post it, because it is that good, and I'm sure everyone will get a kick out of it. Thats a perfect thing for the blog: New England Stereotypes. I'll do some research and see what I can do.

Martin said...

I feel your pain Fred, it's like being a Laker fan. Half the bandwagon can't name more then 4 players, or 6 city and franchise nicknames combined. "Yeah the Nuggets, I've always hated Utah." Huh? WTF? And all the ones under 20 seem to have 4 computers and instant access to every sports comment section on teh Web. It makes ya wanna cry.

Bengoodfella said...

I have to remind myself a lot that I like sports more than the average person and that just because someone else doesn't know something about a team it doesn't mean they aren't a fan, it means they are not obsessed like me.

It irritates me when it seems like a lot of the fans can't name half the things I can, but I just have to understand I am more obsessive than most.

Jeff said...

I didn't read your whole essay, but something immediately caught my eye. you wrote:
"It is widely known that performance-enhancing drugs help baseball players.

It sure didnt help the majority of these guys out too much."
How can you say that? How do you know? Perhaps those guys—MLB scrubs, admittedly—were able to reach the majors because of a boost.

And I was being sarcastic about ARod not being that good.

Anyhow, thanks.

— Jeff

PS: More than half the country was sick of Watergate.

Fred Trigger said...

So, your saying steroids can help a triple A guy to make the show and have a mediocre career? That seems a far cry from writing that Alex Rodriguez and Manny Ramierez wouldnt be that good without steroids, no? I mean, you dont really say it in the article, but you do insinuate it in the title (unless that was the editor, if so, I shall direct my scorn towards him).

I never said they dont enhance performance, but for them to work, you still need to be good, right. I said "I've known kids that played in HS and took steroids, guess what major league team they play for now? They dont, because they sucked and didnt have the talent with or with out PED to play professionally" Thats really what I was getting at. They are not some magic substance that will just automatically transform someone into an amazing baseball player, the talent still needs to be there.

I kind of thought you were joking about AROD, thats why my response was a little more tame then it was going to be, because I had a feeling you knew better than to say something silly like that.

I think the watergate example is a good one, even though I wasnt alive when it happened. I can imagine if the internet was around back then, people would have similar blogs bitching about it, and hoping it would go away.

Well, thanks for stopping by, Jeff.

Bengoodfella said...

That sound you just heard was Fred being owned by what was presumably Jeff Pearlman. Ok, not really but it was good of Jeff to opine/defend himself.

What I don't get is this: We rip Jay Mariotti, Peter King and various other writers all the time, and of course they don't care to say anything because we are just a blog (and I say that in all seriousness, they should not care about us or what we think), but two guys I really like: Jeff Pearlman and Cliff Corcoran have been ripped a little bit twice on this site and twice they have come on here and written in the comments.

Ripping on them is the exception, yet they are the ones that write a comment when it happens. Life is strange that way. Also on his blog today Jeff says he hates being ripped, mocked etc...that being said he is absolutely saying he hates Fred Trigger. I am going to jump to that conclusion.

I wish there could be more discussion, but he has a point that maybe these scrubs got a boost that got them to the majors as well. I still say that every star who is struggling is not on steroids and I guess I missed the joke when he said he was being sarcastic about A-Rod not being that good. I don't get irony or sarcasm, despite the fact it is a major writing tool I use. I think A-Rod struggling has more to do with the hip than it does have to do with steroids, that's just my opinion.

I still love Pearlman's books and I actually buy them as well so that makes me extra special.

Bengoodfella said...

Fred, Cliff Corcoran told me he doesn't get to pick the title of his topics so maybe Jeff is in the same boat with SI as well. I am not sure, but I do agree it is a far cry to say borderline major league players use steroids to get to the majors and to say players who were All-World using PED's would not be any good without them.

I think the talent still has to be there for a player to be good, but sometimes it feels like PED's can really enhance the talent, which is the purpose I imagine.

I am glad to hear he was kidding about A-Rod, that worried me.

I am tired of talking about steroids as well, much like Watergate, and I don't think it takes away from the story for it to be talked out like it is, but there also comes a point when everything has been said. Of course with the steroid issue MLB has allowed new and different revelations to leak out each month which has prolonged the misery.