Thursday, June 4, 2009


Sorry to keep this hanging, but I'll finish this thought process now...

I found out Ramirez was suspended while checking my phone before the start of my British Lit class. it felt like I had been punched in the stomach. and there was still an hour and 15 minutes of class to go through before finding anything else out. I felt sick, then after class, got in the car and headed out to lunch, the talking heads on ESPN Radio saying that it was because of a sexual dysfunction.

There it was. The Grand Excuse. The Dodgers Answer to the Giants' fans repeated "Flaxseed Oil" and "He hasn't been caught" excuses. This was all just a mixup because Manny Ramirez got some bad info from his doctor that Viagra has nothing on hCG.

That semi-elation was short-lived, though, as by the time I pulled up to KFC, the truer story came out: hCG was a drug, like Clomid, that is used by steroid users while ending their steroid cycle. So much for that.

Later on, I read Plaschke's rant (which disappointed me, the Times is going through financial trouble, they pay Plaschke the big money, and all he could muster up at this turning point in LA Sports History was something that resembled any angry blog rant you could find anywhere else on the internet). He said that we must be hard on Ramirez, lest we become the Giants fans we chided that had Bonds' back at the drop of a hat. I didn't buy that. I was plenty angry at Manny for what he put us through, but thought that if he knew the reaction he'd get in L.A., he might not have done this in the first place. Doesn't make it better.

So here we are slightly over the halfway point of Manny's suspension, and I can't help but think that although users are responsible for their own actions, there's something funny going on in baseball. If the commissioner, Bud Selig, was really that intent on getting PED's out of baseball, it'd be done.

Yes, it's that simple.

Why? Well, he's the Commissioner of Baseball. Major League Baseball is a unique organization in this country, in that they have anti-trust exemption, and are not policed by the government. He is a ruler of a soverign land inside our own country, and if he was that committed to cleaning up the game, he could, "In The Best Interest Of The Game". HGH not detectable in urine tests but could be detected in blood tests? Break out the needles, Bud, since the users obviously aren't afraid of them. MLBPA director Donald Fehr has a problem with this... but hey, if you've got nothing to hide, what are you whimpering about?

You want to restore the sport to worldwide prominence, Bud? Have the same drug testing they use in the Olympics.

This game is supposed to be looked up to by children and families, and yet we allow this disease to run rampant in the league... wait, it's not us that are allowing it... it's the Commish. Either he's so blinded by cash that he can't see what's going on, or he's perpetuating it so he could make more cash AND get more media love everytime he publicly decries it inbetween counting his bundles of cash.

In either case, Bud Selig should be seen as a threat to the present and future of baseball. An opportunist selling the future of all who hope to make the bigs with a don't ask-don't tell-don't get caught policy that benefits the League financially at the risk of leaving the League morally bankrupt.

Deniability is Selig's best friend. But the undeniable fact is that his do-nothing-until-the-spotlight's-on attitude is turning the nation away from its pasttime.

Let's get a person in charge who's unbiased towards the players, unions, agents and owners, something we'll never get with an ex-owner in office, one who obviously has no problem with steroids UNTIL someone gets caught.

Bud Selig, "In The Best Interest Of The Game", step down. Please.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Introductions (1 of 2)

Hello, my name is John, and I'm a baseball-holic. No, seriously. I've been a baseball fan as long as I can remember, and for almost all of my years, I've been a fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Nothing has ever stopped that. Not the 1989 season, not the failure of the "Triple Threat Outfield" to play more than a quarter of a season together, not the Pedro-Delino trade, the Piazza for half the Marlins trade or even the sale of the team (twice). Not even my moving 500 miles north into Giant Country. Nothing has shaken me from my enjoyment of the game, and I am an avid believer in the Terrance Mann Creed (from "Field of Dreams"):

The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball.

America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers.
It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again.
But baseball has marked the time.
This field, this game: it's a part of our past, Ray.
It reminds of us of all that once was good and it could be again.
Oh... people will come Ray. People will most definitely come.

From seeing the impact Jackie Robinson had, not only in baseball, but in the desegregation of an entire nation, I've been proud that my favorite team has contributed to the history of this nation. And there's tons of other stories about the deeds of the Dodgers that I won't delve into here.

The early part of this decade was fun because the Dodgers started to turn the tables on the hated San Francisco Giants. From 2004 on, the Dodgers have mostly held the upper hand on the Giants, and as the nation realized Barry Bonds' head growing bigger from more than just his ego, it was fun to prod at Giants fans about it. After all, his numbers kept getting better as he approached what would normally be a geriatric age for a ballplayer. He's smashing 500 ft homers to the opposite field, tearing down records, including those of his own godfather Willie Mays, with utter disregard for following the rules of the game. "Barry's beating up on the good ballplayers who don't use", many thought. And EVERYONE, including the Giants fans, KNEW that NOBODY on their team was a dirty cheat. That was a problem for everyone else.

Well, then one of my longtime favorite players, Manny Ramirez, falls into the Dodgers' lap last season. I've always admired Manny from afar, his Manny-being-Manny antics of disappearing into the Green Monster between innings, taking the field with MP3 Sunglasses and hi-fiving fans in the middle of plays were amusing to me. This guy was entertaining, and he could rake. I thought the community of L.A. would eat that up, and every time there was a trade rumor in the shaky Manny-Boston marraige, I would hope that he'd end up in LA. And every time, I was disappointed, til the last time.

To have one of my favorite ballplayers on my favorite team was beyond mindblowing. The feeling of actually winning a playoff series for this fan who was 7 when the Dodgers won their last playoff series was exhilirating. The numbers continued this year... and then it happened.

Hate to leave everyone hanging, but this is a good place to leave off, as I gotta get ready for work. Will finish the post tonight after work. Thanks for reading.