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This Bud’s for no one

Hypocritical commish is the person who truly shamed the game

February 13, 2009
By B.J. LISKO, Salem News Sports Editor

Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig is the biggest hypocrite in America.

On Thursday, Selig said Alex Rodiguez and other baseball players that used steroids "shamed the game."

Excuse me, Bud. You were the commissioner who let all of this happen. How dare you sit on your pedestal now, years after you let baseball become more juiced than World Wrestling Entertainment?

In 1994, when players went on strike, attendance in American ballparks took a massive hit when players outright refused to play if they didn't get more money. It was a blow to our national pastime many thought could doom it for decades.

But instead of taking the high road and letting fans come back to baseball at their leisure, something that ultimately would've happened anyway, Bud turned a blind eye to the cartoonish-like statistics the game began to take on.

He didn't care. His ballparks were full.

No one had hit 60 home runs in a season since Roger Maris in 1961, and suddenly it started becoming routine. Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire, Miguel Tejada and numerous others ballooned in size and stature, and home run and RBI totals were down right ridiculous.

Jose Canseco wrote a book, and Bud and baseball scoffed. Turns out, though hazy, and for some pretty seedy reasons of his own, Canseco was mostly right.

Now Selig wants to play commissioner. Now Selig wants to police the game and set good examples for today's youth. Too late, Bud. The damage is done, and it's your fault for not doing something sooner.

The public can fault the players, too, something it has already done and will continue to do. Players who juiced will forever pay the price in the court of public opinion.

But under your policies Bud, they didn't break any rules. Steroids were perfectly legal. And players have every right to call you on this.

You can't go back now. You can't put asterisks on records, either, because every era had something going on that you could argue messed with numbers -amphetamines, the height of the pitcher's mound, the fact that the big hitters of yesteryears never played against African American ballplayers, and so on.

What you can do, though, is put a big, fat asterisk right next to Selig's name. And the footnote will read this: "Without a doubt, the unequivocal, absolute worst commissioner in the history of the game. May the Gods of baseball have mercy on your wretched, miserable soul."

You are swine, Bud. Complete swine.

E-mail B.J. Lisko at bjlisko@salemnews.net

 
 
 

 

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