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The Sosa leak is worse than the Sosa 'roids

Jun 17, 2009, 8:29 AM EST

Obviously the story of the day is Sammy Sosa. Earlier, Bob cataloged the non-surprise to the Sosa news. At NBC Sports proper, Mike Celzic writes that rather than burn Sosa at the stake, our focus should be on Bud Selig and Don Fehr.

My view: I share the lack of surprise Bob mentions and the lack of ire
at Sammy Sosa for many of the reasons Mike mentions. But to me, the
real issue here is the fact that list of the 2003 test results — which
was intended to be first confidential and then was supposed to be
destroyed — is being leaked. The MLBPA and/or Major League Baseball
screwed up royal in allowing that list to survive when they had agreed
that it would not. The people who subjected themselves to the drug
testing that formed its basis (a) did so in order to move the ball
forward on drug testing in baseball; and (b) had an expectation that
their identities would remain confidential. That expectation has now
been spectacularly confounded, and the practical result of it is that
anyone who cares about their privacy is now being sent the message that
they should not, under any circumstances, participate in their
employers’ drug testing program, however confidential it is supposed to
be. You never know: your name could wind up in the newspapers! Your
mileage may vary, but I don’t think the avoidance of workplace drug
testing is something anyone wants to encourage. As a result of all of
this, it’s my view that the list should be ordered destroyed, though I
suspect that in the Internet age, such an order would be meaningless.
Information wants to be free, and enough people have it now that I
suspect it all will be some day.

The greater wrong in my mind is the fact of the leaks themselves. I’m a
lawyer by trade, and it shocks me that fellow officers of the court are
divulging this sort of information to the media. This is evidence that
was seized in an ongoing criminal case that is subject to court order
putatively preventing its release. The act of leaking this stuff is, at
the very least, a violation of that court order and a violation of
legal ethics. Depending on the exact language of the order, it could be
a criminal act. I don’t know about you, but that causes me far more
concern than whether Sammy Sosa took steroids six years ago.

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