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Bill Buckner: I definitely would have been tempted to take steroids

Jan 29, 2010, 11:00 AM EDT

Hey Howard Bryant, does Bill Buckner count as someone “around the game”? Because if he does, you’re going to have to update your toxicity scoreboard:

“I tried a million different things to combat the injury. I had to stay on the field. I was a little bit aware of the extraordinary physical gains some
guys were making, but I don’t really look at it like
some former players do, that it’s cheating. It’s a very tempting
thing to do whatever you can to get healthy because the game puts such
demands on you physically. I didn’t have the opportunity to use those
things, and I’m glad I didn’t because I definitely would have been
tempted. The direction is always better and stronger, better and faster, better and better. Anybody would have been tempted.”

There’s more than just the steroids stuff in the article — Buckner is the “day games hurt the Cubs” camp and he’s not in the “players were better in my day” camp — so it’s definitely worth a read.

  1. Old Gator - Jan 29, 2010 at 11:10 AM

    Heh heh, well, if they enabled him to bend down just a few millimeters further, who would begrudge him? Heck, even Jack Clark and Ken Rosenthal might show a little sympathy.

  2. Chris H. - Jan 29, 2010 at 11:21 AM

    Great stuff. Always good to see an old player who (A) is reasonable and realistic (e.g. saying something like hell yes I would’ve been tempted) and (B) doesn’t fall into the “players were better in my day” camp.
    Obviously (B) is a subset of (A). I’d do a proper Venn diagram if I weren’t so lazy.

  3. Alan - Jan 29, 2010 at 11:53 AM

    If I were a professional ball player, i would have taken steroids in a heart beat.

  4. Derek - Jan 29, 2010 at 12:10 PM

    I think “healthy” is the operative term. Elite athletes push their bodies to the edge and so are most of the time in fact UNHEALTHY. The (false?) promise of bodily health offered by steroids has to seem like a way out to athletes, people whose bodies are always on the verge of breaking down completely. Fans need to try and empathize. They haven’t had to deal with the prolonged physical stress of elite performance. And baseball players have to deal with that stress longer than most athletes.

  5. Morgan W - Jan 29, 2010 at 12:48 PM

    The question is, would you have blagged moaned and lied if asked if you did use PEDs.
    These guys can do what they want, but dont looked utterly stunned and offended when asked about it.
    Cheated the game? Sure. Moral outrage at the person? Tough unless hes a piece of dirt and accepted all the fame and adulation while denying a fact.

  6. moreflagsmorefun - Jan 29, 2010 at 1:22 PM

    I have a problem when you try to justify it, just apologize without the reason, I don’t even care if it is heart felt.I have accepted steroids is part of the history of the game, just don’t make me feel dum about it. I even accept them in the HOF too, just put a asterisk.I have no problem with Big Mac being a coach either just stop with the justification, we all make mistakes, we even marry them, life is not perfect, neither is man.The longer this continues the more the game is hurt by it.
    I’m glad Bill didn’t use PED’S, if he did, that ball never goes thru his legs(wink wink Bill), can you imagine the things they would say about the Mets.
    couple more weeks people, get ya popcorn ready

  7. Joey B - Jan 29, 2010 at 1:35 PM

    “I have a problem when you try to justify it, just apologize without the reason, I don’t even care if it is heart felt.I have accepted steroids is part of the history of the game, just don’t make me feel dum about it.”
    That’s what I keep saying is his biggest problem. One person in 71 years hit 60+ HRs. Mac takes PEDs. Mac then averages 61+ for four years, and then says he doesn’t think they helped him hit HRs.
    So he is saying that it is his God-given talents that allowed him to hit 245 HRs in 4 years, and that he deserves all the accolades. He must think Americans are complete idiots.

  8. Rays fan - Jan 29, 2010 at 1:53 PM

    No, McGwire’s delusional–he actually believes what he says, despite it’s obvious nonsense to everyone else.

  9. Motherscratcher - Jan 29, 2010 at 3:21 PM

    Jeez…why does Buckner hate the children so much?

  10. CharlieH - Jan 29, 2010 at 5:33 PM

    We were all tempted. Most resisted temptation, some failed.

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