The latest trial ballon floated by MLB Commissioner Bud Selig to look tough on past steroid use is word that he is going to suspend Yankees' firstbaseman Jason Giambi for the comments he made to USA Today regarding his past use of various pharmaceuticals if he doesn't cooperate with the Mitchell investigation. My visceral reaction? An threat of harm to someone who did nothing that wasn't condoned by all of baseball. What follows is an abuse of power. But really, I'm just tired of the story.
Baseball is running a public relations campaign because some people are upset about professional athletes looking for any edge they can gain in pursuit of competitive excellence and seven-, eight-, and nine-figure pay-offs. Why shouldn't they use the same drugs being hawked to aging Baby Boomers in their pursuit of perpetual youth? Why should 20- and 20-somethings be demonized when we laud people willing to destroy their families in the pursuit of the executive suite? Or in the pursuit of political power?
I am not a fan of Barry Bonds, but he is going to break Hank Aaron's record. Would I prefer someone more admirable (see Curt Schilling for the list of undesirable character traits in Bonds' possession)? Sure. If I were running baseball would I let the mob speculate about my whereabouts as the day nears? No. I'd be there when Bonds hits 755. I would consider my responsibility. Unless I was willing to disgorge all the profits MLB has made in the Steroid Era. Then I'd have moral high-ground.
Leave Jason Giambi alone and call-off the torches-and-pitchforks crowd. The players used steroids, the fans enjoyed the game and MLB reaped the profits.