sam's notes

notes on government, sports and popular culture

Thursday, December 09, 2004

I was disappointed in George Will's tepid response to baseball's steroids scandal.

The way I read Will's column, which sometimes is tantamount to translating a foreign language, baseball fans need to concentrate not only on the majority of players who don't use steroids but on the great players of the past, namely Hank Aaron who set records without cheating.

It's clear Bud Selig is going to turn his back on this matter. Okay, they're going to set up a testing plan — big deal. I still think Barry Bonds and Jason Giambi should be banned from baseball. At the very least, Selig should call Bonds into his office and invite him to retire. Then they'll just call it even, and Bonds will take his place in the Hall of Fame.

When Will asks if you would cross the street to watch him break Aaron's home run record, he's suggesting that the fans will be have to be the final judges on the matter. Once again, our only recourse will be to give the sport up.

But it's not that simple. My buddy Dave can't understand this, but baseball is an addictive pastime, one that has had a "durable hold on the country," as Will writes. No matter how much baseball fans get slapped around, we always come back for more. We can't walk away from the sport.

So instead of letting rage against steroid users get the best of us, we'd just better focus our thoughts on the positive aspects of the game. It's going to be hard as we watch Bonds hits home run 715 next season and creeps closer to 755.


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