Monday, January 11, 2010

Better late than never -- McGwire finally confesses

Baseball slugger Mark McGwire finally has admitted today that he used steroids.

Some will say it's too little, too late. Five years ago before Congress, McGwire repeatedly said "I'm not here to talk about the past" when asked about whether he used steroids. (He also used human growth hormone, according to the AP).

Now, he's finally talking -- well, at least he has issued a statement and is doing phone interviews, and I'm sure the "for-the-cameras" news conference and the "60 Minutes" and "ESPN" appearances won't be too long in coming. McGwire had to do this to return to baseball -- he will work for his old team, the St. Louis Cardinals, as hitting coach for the 2010 season.

Well, I say this is better late than never. At least McGwire won't carry this "secret" to his grave, as some other stars from the same era seem intent on doing (are you listening, Barry Bonds?).

McGwire said in his statement: "I wish I had never touched steroids. It was foolish and it was a mistake. I truly apologize. Looking back, I wish I had never played during the steroid era."

Maybe McGwire's admission and apology will keep a couple of kids from falling into the same trap (although you could also argue McGwire's delayed admission let thousands of the same sort of opportunities to scare kids straight go by the wayside).

I'm not arguing that McGwire deserves a medal for doing the right thing now -- a thing he should have done long ago. I'm just saying I'm glad he did it. I know his motives probably aren't the purest here, but at least he's talking (a little) about the past.


Leighton said...

I say good job for Big Mac. This by no means makes anything that he did okay. But for his own sake I bet he can sleep better at night knowing that he came clean.

Clt said...

Barry Bonds was the best in baseball until others started using steroids to beat him. It was obvious to me (and everyone else) when he started using. Baseball had a great time marketing the home run derby between Sosa, Mcguire, and Bonds. Now Barry Bonds is still supposed to be the bad guy because he won't "admit" what everybody already knows? I wonder why?

Anonymous said...

Wondering when the media will get a little curiosity about Sammy Sosa.

McGwire takes the 5th before Congress, while So-so has a dramatic production in which he pretends he can't speak English and then (allegedly) lies. One of these makes for a bigger story, but was completely ignored by the media.

The Narrative always has been "McGwire bad, Sosa good" - even when Sammy acts selfish or bizarre (like bleaching his skin) and when McGwire in contrast donates millions to kids' charities. Hopefully, this confession gets the media past their hangup and back toward reality.

Anonymous said...

never liked him, never will

a total disgrace to the sport

Anonymous said...

throw in the Sosa corked bat stuff and and anon above makes a great case....but both Sosa and McBalco are total chumps

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 6:18, fair enough - but you have to make the exact same point about everyone involved in MLB at the time. Everyone was either using or covering for someone who was.

BTW, "everyone" ranges from the players to the managers to the front office to the owners to (that's right) the media.

The media maybe most of all, since they were the ones with clubhouse access who could see guys with body acne so bad they looked like lunar landscapes. They were the ones whose job was to expose the truth. Instead, they ducked and covered. Remember all the stories about the "juiced ball" that they all knew was bogus, but reported as fact anyway?

And that's without the amphetamine scandal that they've still ignored.

Ban McGwire from the Hall if you like, but you have to ban everyone who picked up a bat, glove, baseball, lineup card, whatever for the past two or three decades as well.

J said...

I'm glad McGwire came clean too, but he came clean for one reason and one reason only - because he is the Cards hitting instructor. I'm not buying the tears, the "I truly apologize" or any of the other fake stuff. He should have come clean in front of Congress.

And yes, the others should be banned too. That includes A-Rod, who everyone has given a pass to because he plays for the Yankees. If you let ANY of the steroids guys in the Hall, you have to let Pete Rose in also. At least he didn't juice himself up.

Anonymous said...

No proof Rose ever gambled on baseball or tried to throw a game and no players or fans ever questioned his calls or play once in 25 yrs. Nothing in his coaching or playing revealed anything but 100% honesty. Had he tried he would have been easily discovered but he didnt so his Cooperstown shutout is a fraud.

McGwire was never arrogant or considered himself above the game fans or players like other roiders and didnt have to do this. Maybe he just wanted the spotlight one more time ...

Anonymous said...

Baseball has always had cheaters...however, there has always been a double-standard on the type of cheating. Spitballs, scuffed balls, corked bats, etc...everyone kind of smiles and says, "Aw, shucks, I guess I got caught" and there are sometimes fines, maybe suspensions, but its accepted as "part of the game" and careers are not ended over it. With steroids, HGH, etc. we now want to hold these guys to a higher standard? Is it cheating or not? Is it illegal or not? Its a simple question. But baseball itself makes it not so simple. Even after someone DIED as a result of a spitball thrown in poor light, baseball STILL allowed limited use of it for awhile. The problem is the LEAGUE, not the players. If they think that it will boost profits, draw more fans that it will alienate, then they will turn a blind eye. As long as the balls kept leaping out of the park, no one in baseball management was going to complain about juiced players.

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 7:41 1/10, I hope I'm reading you wrong. You're not really saying there's no proof Rose bet on baseball, are you?

We have the testimony of the guy who placed his bets, bank records, telephone records, and his fingerprint on the betting slips.

If that's not "proof," I wonder what is.

Google the Dowd Report to learn more.

tarhoosier said...

Tony LaRussa, the manager of Canseco and McGwire through the run of JuiceBall continues to be headed for the Hall of Fame, despite his continued support and apologies for them, and for himself.
I quote Cicero (with adjustments): The league sees these things. The leadership is aware of these things. And STILL this man survives

Anonymous said...

Rose is clean. He was convicted for tax evasion only mainly not reporting autographs he charged ig prices for.

Pete Rose, baseball's all-time hits leader and manager of the Cincinnati Reds since 1984, was reported as betting on Major League games, including Reds games while he was the manager.

Rose had been questioned about his gambling activities in February 1989 by outgoing commissioner Peter Ueberroth and his successor, National League president A. Bartlett Giamatti. Three days later, lawyer John M. Dowd was retained to investigate the charges against Rose. During the investigation, Giamatti took office as the commissioner of baseball.

A March 21, 1989 Sports Illustrated article linked him to gambling on baseball games.

The Dowd Report asserted that Pete Rose bet on fifty-two Reds games in 1987, at a minimum of $10,000 a day.

Rose, facing a very harsh punishment, along with his attorney and agent, Reuven Katz, decided to seek a compromise with Major League Baseball. On August 24, 1989, Rose agreed to a voluntary lifetime ban from baseball. The agreement had three key provisions:

1.Major League Baseball would make no finding of fact regarding gambling allegations and cease their investigation;
2.Pete Rose was neither admitting or denying the charges; and
3.Pete Rose could apply for reinstatement after one year.
To Rose's chagrin, however, Giamatti immediately stated publicly that he felt that Pete Rose bet on baseball games. Then, in a stunning follow-up event, Giamatti, a heavy smoker for many years, suffered a fatal heart attack just eight days later, on September 1.

The consensus among baseball experts is that the death of Giamatti and the ascension of Fay Vincent, a great admirer of Giamatti, was the worst thing that could happen to Pete Rose's hopes of reinstatement.[citation needed]

On February 4, 1991, the twelve members of the board of directors of the Baseball Hall of Fame voted unanimously to bar Rose from the ballot. However, he still received 41 write-in votes on January 7, 1992.

Bud Selig, the former owner of the Milwaukee Brewers, succeeded Vincent in 1992.

In 2004, after years of speculation and denial, Pete Rose admitted in his book My Prison Without Bars that the accusations that he had bet on Reds games were true, and that he had admitted it to Bud Selig personally some time before. Rose, however, stated that he always bet on the Reds — never against. [1]

Pete Rose has applied for reinstatement twice: in September, 1997 and March 2003. In both instances, commissioner Selig has failed to act, thereby keeping the ban intact. However, he was allowed to be a part of the All-Century Team celebration in 1999 since he was named one of the team's outfielders.

Dr. Horrible said...

Rose is as dirty as they come. Go read the Dowd report (or the Cliffs Notes version if you prefer).

He gambled on games. He evaded taxes. And there are indications in the report he was part of his buddies' cocaine-selling ring.

If Rose is "clean," everyone but Rae Carruth is as well.

Anonymous said...

I only wish that Hank Aaron's records would have only been broken by players as clean as he was. As it was, he got death threats out the wazoo, and he already had 500 homers and 3000 hits before he received his first contract for $100K. That's K, not M.

Anonymous said...

The death threats to Aaron were mostly bogus and exaggerated by the media as usual. He was and still is highly respected in Atlanta and the south for that matter. Aaron was born and raised in Mobile Alabama.
If any threats existed they came from north of the Mason Dixon line where Babe Ruth was born (Baltimore) raised played and died mainly with the NY Yankees although he was with the Red Sox a few yrs initially.

Anonymous said...

Some morons need to be corrected although the reason pro sports have become so corrupt and has such a bad name today is so many pampered spoiled rotten arrogant greedy drugged sexual deviant scumbags demanding mega millions while fans ultimately foot the bill.

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