Jan 29, 2010, 4:15 PM EST
Bob Klapsich explains why A-Rod has been allowed to moonwalk from his steroids scandal while McGwire keeps getting ripped. As an explanation, I find it to be lacking:
First, he appeared to be more honest than McGwire in revealing the
detail of his cheating. While A-Rod may have fudged some details, he at
least provided the name of a complicit family member, as well as the
exact time frame of his cheating.
Wait, A-Rod gets credit for throwing a family member under the bus? Where I come from that makes things worse. And what
about “the exact time frame” of his cheating stuff? If I remember
correctly, he took all kinds of flak over the claim that he stopped taking PEDs the moment he donned the pinstripes, as well as for other things. Klapisch goes on:
Second, A-Rod was able to dodge the backlash by falling off the Yankees’ radar while he underwent hip surgery. Unlike McGwire, who will face
daily scrutiny as the Cardinals’ hitting instructor, Rodriguez was
absent for almost two months during his convalescence. By the time he
returned in May, he’d decided to stop talking – or, if he did agree to
be interviewed, kept his comments short, scripted and, most
If McGwire “fell off the radar” like that he’d be excoriated for ducking the media. Oh, wait, he’s already being excoriated for that even though he’s given more interviews that A-Rod ever did following his unmasking. C’mon Bob, what’s really going on?
It doesn’t hurt, either, that he’s now officially a creature of the
postseason. Those massive home runs off Joe Nathan in the ALDS and
Brian Fuentes in the ALCS led to A-Rod’s breakthrough moment in the
World Series – driving in the go-ahead run in the ninth inning of Game
4 against Brad Lidge.
Ah, there we are. All it takes to atone for the sin of taking steroids is to hit “massive home runs.” Nope, I see no cognitive dissonance there at all.
Look, I’m not ripping Klapisch here because, unless I’m mistaken, he’s merely explaining why, in the minds of the public, A-Rod is off the hook now, not arguing that he deserves to be off or McGwire deserves to be on or both. But it’s pretty clear that McGwire is being held to a different standard here, and those who will pass judgment on him are going to do their damnedest to ensure that he cannot win.
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