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Reminder: There are already steroids users in the Hall of Fame

Jan 9, 2013, 10:30 AM EDT

Milkshake

Today, when the BBWAA elects either no one or, at best, two of over a dozen deserving candidates into the Hall of Fame, a lot of people will say they’re OK with that because it’s better to err on the side of caution than it is to allow a PED user to enter Cooperstown’s hallowed halls.  When they say this, remind them of the following passage from page 28 of the Mitchell Report:

In 1973, a Congressional subcommittee announced that its staff had completed an “in depth study into the use of illegal and dangerous drugs in sports” including professional baseball.  The subcommittee concluded that “the degree of improper drug use – primarily amphetamines and anabolic steroids – can only be described as alarming.”

Then remember — via Larry Granillo of Wezen-Ball from back in 2010 — that one Hall of Fame voter, Thomas Boswell of the Washington Post, has already said that he knows a current Hall of Famer used steroids. He said it on camera, in Ken Burns’ motherf—ing “Tenth Inning”:

“There was another player now in the Hall of Fame who literally stood with me and mixed something and I said “What’s that?” and he said “it’s a Jose Canseco milkshake”. And that year that Hall of Famer hit more home runs than ever hit any other year. So it wasn’t just Canseco, and so one of the reasons that I thought that it was an important subject was that it was spreading. It was already spreading by 1988.”

Steroid use in baseball was “alarming” as of 1973.  As of 1988 a guy who is now in the Hall of Fame was taking “Jose Canseco milkshakes,” which clearly meant steroids.

There is nothing left to protect. The “caution” that will be lauded today when so many worthy candidates fail to be elected will be empty and meaningless at best, active perpetuation of a double standard at worst.

120 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Bill Parker - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:36 AM

    Has to be Puckett.

    • Bill Parker - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:37 AM

      Not that I care — he’s my favorite player of all time no matter what, in fact — just seems to line up pretty well as the already-in guy that everyone’s always on about.

      • logankivo - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:04 AM

        Kirby was my favorite and I’ve wondered recently if the vision loss had something to do with steroids, but the hr high in 88 doesn’t line up with Puck

    • jerze2387 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:39 AM

      Gary or kirby?

    • ThatGuy - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:44 AM

      Could be Andre Dawson if his memory is slightly off and it was 87′ he was thinking about. Dawson had barely broken thirty once, than cranks out 49 in 87.

      Puckett’s home run peak was in 86, and even that was only 31.

      • contraryguy - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:14 PM

        Bingo. Because unless you’re at the very end of 1988, you wouldn’t be talking about the 88 season in the past tense yet. Five-year stretch for Dawson, centering on 87: 23, 20, 49, 24, 21. Mmm yeah. Of course with that peak in the middle there, doesn’t seem like Andre would’ve ridden that horse too long.

      • rmcd13 - Jan 9, 2013 at 4:39 PM

        Andre Dawson is the Hall of Fame player who best fits the description. Also, if Dawson was drinking a “Jose Canseco” milkshake, having never played with Canseco and being in an entirely separate league (AL vs NL), it stands to reason that by 1988 EVERYBODY in baseball knew about steroids.

    • alang3131982 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:54 AM

      Oddly, I really want to know how it is, unless it’s Cal. That would make me sad — i dont know why. It shouldnt, but i shouldnt get angry every time i open a vintage pack and get a Jose Mesa….

      • ltzep75 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:45 PM

        Not Cal. HR peak was in 91 with 34, which is in line with his prior production of 28, 27, 27, 26, 25, 27, 23, 21, 21 and then 34. I will plug my ears if someone comes up with legit evidence of and PED use by Cal.

        /lalalalalalalalala

    • captainwisdom8888 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:55 AM

      whatever they do about inducting players who have taken PEDS into Hall of Fame, I just hope they stay consistent and not allow the media circus to place a stigma on certain “roiders” over others. You let one in, you let em all in

    • gbomb725 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:41 PM

      It’s strawberry

  2. gosport474 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:36 AM

    Mmmmm!!! Steak ‘n’ Shake!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • jcmeyer10 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:02 AM

      I was born in the St. Louis and live around Boston now. That is one of the things I miss the most about St. Louis.

      • Old Gator - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:15 PM

        Um – do you mind if I have a sip of that? I gotta see what a five dollar milkshake tastes like.

  3. goskinsvt - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:37 AM

    If there’s nothing left to protect, then why should the HoF be viewed as anything other than a complete farce?

    • nategearhart - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:40 AM

      Because it’s still ok to like baseball even if sometimes people cheat at it.

      • goskinsvt - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:46 AM

        It’s like the guy below me said, the argument Craig is making is ‘if you can’t fix everything, do nothing’. It reduces the legitimacy of the HoF to nothing going forward.

    • cur68 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:34 AM

      Just what kind of legitimacy is the HoF protecting? Not a moral one; Ty Cobb/Segregated baseball (no accomplishment of HoF players from segregated baseball times can be judged fairly alongside ALL ballplayers: all players were not allowed to rise to the level of their talent)/etc. Not a non-cheating one; Perry/Ruth/Aaron/etc. Plenty of cheaters are in there.

      Its a MUSEUM. It chronicles baseball history. People seem to make the same mistake Ken Burns makes: moralizing about history when what they should be doing is asking their historians and museums to chronicle history. Bonds, Clemens and all the other PEDs guys who have the numbers are part of that history. Induct them, yes. But on their plaque note the history of these guys. Then go back and note the history of guys like Cobb and so on. That’s what a museum should be for.

      • 18thstreet - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:30 PM

        You know what’s started to bug me? This idea that a voter needs more time to decide. Anyone on the Hall of Fame ballot hasn’t played in at least five years. That’s enough time.

    • alang3131982 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:56 AM

      Ummm how about protecting the idea of the Hall of Fame — to honor the best baseball players ever — not guys who played after 1980 who some writers believe are above reproach. The argument is that, at no point, has teh HoF or the electorate cared about morality, cheating or character. For the electorate to all of a sudden claim that those things matter in honoring the games best players (when they are doing so with little legitimate proof) is silly and hypocritical.

  4. deadeyedesign23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:39 AM

    This argument to me sounds like if you can’t fix everything, do nothing. I’m not making a judgment one way or the other over whether PED users should be in, but if you’re a voter who feels they shouldn’t having one in already doesn’t just clear the path for everyone else anymore than one person getting away with double parking doesn’t make it ok for everyone else to double park.

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:56 AM

      That is what the argument sounds like to me as well.

    • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:20 AM

      Fix what? What is it you think needs to be fixed and why? What is the purpose of your moralizing stance and the basis for its determination and justification?

      • blacksables - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:29 AM

        paper; we don’t agree often, but you’re right on about this. There is nothing to fix.

        Because if they change the one thing that everyone is bitching about (the writers voting, or not), all that will happen is another procedure will go into place that everyone will then bitch about.

        What it comes down to is: I want my Hall to be what I want it to be and the Hell with anyone else’s opinion.

        If I can’t have exactly what I want, then it’s irrelevant. And this is the people we’re supposed to give the vote to. A bunch of childish, petulant fans who can’t make a decision any better than the writers.

      • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:35 AM

        I just don’t understand why people think the HOF suddenly needs to be about anything but which players were the best at baseball during each era? It really isn’t that complicated and there is no need for it to be.

      • deadeyedesign23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 4:25 PM

        I like how you skipped the part about me not making a judgment either way on it. I don’t care…its a building in the middle of no where that houses a lot more than the one hallway of plaques.

    • American of African Descent - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:36 AM

      No, the argument is that we should respect precedent. (The technical term is stare decisis.) There are already “cheaters” in the hall of fame. So what makes the “cheaters” already in the hall of fame more worthy of enshrinement than the current crop of “cheaters”?

      Using your double parking analogy, if no one in the past has ever been ticketed for double parking, if people have been double parking for decades without punishment, if the municipality had encourages double parking because double-parkers make money (just like steroid users made money for MLB), then you can see how it would come as a surprise (and be perceived as more than unfair) for the municipality to start punishing people for double parking.

      • The Dangerous Mabry - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:48 AM

        And more to the point, not just to start punishing people for double parking, but to decide that anyone who double parked in the last 15 years should be punished.

      • louhudson23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:47 PM

        But people have been fined for double parking.Someone has simply referred to a single double parker who was not fined.So,no more double parking fines because of this single occurrence??. No one made these assholes take steroids. They chose it.made their money all the while making a freak show of the game,so all your whining for their blown up asses is quite silly.

      • deadeyedesign23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 4:28 PM

        If it’s all the hall is about is respecting precedent then Lloyd Waner set the precedent that anyone with a career WAR higher than 24.7 is in. Which is to say that Dan Uggla is a hall of famer if he retired today.

  5. Kleinz 57 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:39 AM

    Craig, I’ve loved a lot of the HoF stuff on HBT these past few weeks but I think Harold Reynolds and Al Leiter completely burned me out on MLB Network’s roundtable discussion last night.

    The minute their pro-Jack Morris case veered toward “pitching to the score” and “forgetting about numbers,” I nearly spewed carbonara all over my TV.

    • gosport474 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:50 AM

      LOL Kleinz 57. I was a little disappointed that Posnanski didn’t jump in at that point to debunk the whole ‘pitch to the score’ nonsense.

      • blacksables - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:34 AM

        Who cares if Jack Morris gets in? Let him.

        The Hall of Fame won’t be cheapened by his inclusion.

        It’s cheapened by the exclusion of Tim Raines.

        So what if a couple of extra guys get in to make sure the deserving ones do.

      • IdahoMariner - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:53 AM

        if i am reading pos’s tweets correctly, i think he also got overwhelmed by the craziness around him. if he had carbonara, he probably would have spewed it at that point.i

    • indaburg - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:33 PM

      I was watching last night too. My cursing when they started talking about Jack Morris pitching to the score would have put Ken Motherfudgin’ Burns to shame.

  6. dagnats - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:53 AM

    Not accusing anyone here, but I just took a look at some stats for guys voted in before 2010. Ryne Sandberg has the jump to 40 HR’s in 1 year and Wade Boggs had a huge jump to 24 HR’s…If Boswell let out the year the increase in HR’s occurred it would be easy to figure out… Maybe the truth will come out, maybe it won’t…

    • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:23 AM

      Those just look like random variation though (not unlike Maris hitting 61 or Foster hitting 52). Unless you really think those guys used steroids one year and then stopped because hitting home runs sucked.

      • kirkvanhouten - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:43 AM

        Plus, Boggs 24 home runs weren’t that weird in 1987 because a *ton* of players put up career years in HR that year. For god’s sake, Brooke Jacoby hit 32 home runs.

      • IdahoMariner - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:54 AM

        the writer just said that year was the most the HOFer ever hit, not that it would reflect something statistically significant.

  7. DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:53 AM

    Reminder: there are players who gambled on baseball in the Hall of Fame. And we have had U.S Presidents that owned slaves.

    The question is what do you do moving forward

    • nategearhart - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:07 AM

      Know what the difference is between taking steroids and owning another human being? One of them is a very, very big deal. Talk about false analogy!

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:24 AM

        I am not making an analogy – and you seem to be the only person who read it that way. I am saying that pointing to what was done in the past is not an argument for how things should be move forward. The high brow types call it Reductio ad absurdum – you reduce the argument to the absurd to show that the proposition in untenable.

        But if you are still not satisified, let me state unequivocally that I do not now nor have I ever believed taking steroids is the equivalent of owning slaves

      • nategearhart - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:35 AM

        Then why even bring it up if you don’t think they are equivalent?

      • blacksables - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:36 AM

        Wow, if only you had found a way to tie-in human sacrifice to your argument.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:38 AM

        @nate – re-read my reply to you. Also look up Straw Man argument, which what you are doing right now

      • nategearhart - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:54 AM

        I’m aware of what a strawman argument is. I didn’t need to invent a person who claimed that when it comes to recognizing accomplishments, steroid users are on the same foot as slaveowners. You did that in real life, at the beginning of this thread.
        Your argument falls apart because you seem to miss fact that it’s no big deal that there is already a steroid-using hall of famer. Trying not to put words in your mouth, but you seem to be under the impression that some sort of ERROR was made in electing a steroid-user into the hall of fame. Well I, and many others like me, don’t see it that way (unless the electee in question was Bruce Sutter or Jim Rice, but that has nothing to do with steroids). Unlike slavery, using a performance enhancer is not some universal evil.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:39 PM

        Again, re-read my intial reply to you.

        As long as we are making straw arguments – your screenname is an anagram of “Anger Hate Art”. I refuse to listen to anyone who has anger and hates art.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:43 PM

        P.S. – if you would take a chill pill – you would see I too am saying that it is not a big deal that a ‘roid use is already in the Hall. Therefore, it can not be used to say all future ‘roid usrs should get in.

        Making sense now? We doing better there, big fella?

    • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:27 AM

      HOF recognizes accomplishments after then happen, that is all. Based on this logic, we should deny all accomplishments by those that owned slaves. After all, they all knew it was wrong, how could you not? And plenty of rich white men actively chose not to own slaves. Are we to judge those from the mid 18th century based on 21st century morality? Are we to judge 1990s baseball players based on today’s morality? Believe it or not, the attitudes towards steroids completely flipped since the 90s, until Bonds started breaking records, almost no one cared.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:31 AM

        “Based on this logic, we should deny all accomplishments by those that owned slaves.”

        No, based on that logic, one can not say “So what if my 2016 candidate owned slaves – are you going to deny that Thomas Jefferson and George Washington didn’t do that same?”

      • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:37 AM

        No, it isn’t. Because you are judge contemporaries using contemporary morality in your example. Even though you think the 1990s wasn’t that long ago, the views held by everyone then were much different. It is revisionist to judge people by contemporary standards that did not exist when they made their choices.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:41 AM

        “Even though you think the 1990s wasn’t that long ago, the views held by everyone then were much different.”

        A) I am older than you seem to think
        B) Chillax (yes, I meant that to be ironic given point A)

      • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:46 AM

        I have no opinion about your age….just about how you are choosing to apply moral standards that didn’t exist in an era to that era (which people regularly do regardless of the fact that they lived through it and changed their morals substantially since then).

      • mikedavis11 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:58 PM

        anyone that is going to use the term chilax couldnt be older than 15

  8. thomas2727 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:54 AM

    It is always a great when Mr. Milkshake is a topic on the boards.

  9. Detroit Michael - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:56 AM

    As I commented on in one of yesterday’s threads, it doesn’t matter whether there is someone who is in the Hall of Fame who used steroids if that steroid usage was not known at the time of the election. One can only evaluate the decision to vote for or against a Hall of Fame candidate based on the facts known at the time.

    • jasonc2300 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:34 AM

      And thank God all of the writers voting this year are sticking only to the facts known right now, and not letting any innuendo or whispers or guilt-by-association get in the way. Phew!

  10. number42is1 - Jan 9, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    is that a $5 shake?

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:29 AM

      Yup, just milk and ice cream, no bourbon.

      • number42is1 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:46 AM

        you mind if i taste? I gotta know what a $5 shake tastes like

  11. dagnats - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:01 AM

    Boggs

    1986 – 8 HR
    1987 – 24 HR

    Molitor

    1992 – 12 HR
    1993 – 22 HR

    Puckett

    1984 – 0 HR
    1985 – 4 HR
    1986 – 31 HR
    1987 – 28 HR
    1988 – 24 HR

    Im not doing anymore…Im tired and really don’t care…

    • logankivo - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:20 AM

      Boggs and Dawson 87 seasons

      • dagnats - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:25 AM

        yeah Dawson’s 87 season is a good one too

      • kirkvanhouten - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:58 AM

        A ton of players had crazy 1987 seasons. Runs and home runs were up big time that season. Players hit home runs *at the same rate in 1987 as they did in 1998!*

        From http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/article/changes-in-home-run-rates-during-the-retrosheet-years/

        1982 2.7%
        1983 2.7%
        1984 2.7%
        1985 3.0%
        1986 3.2%

        1987 3.7%

        1988 2.7%
        1989 2.6%
        1990 2.8%
        1991 2.9%
        1992 2.5%

        1993 3.1%

        1994 3.7%
        1994 3.7%
        1995 3.6%
        1996 3.9%
        1997 3.7%
        1998 3.7%
        You will note that 1987 stands out, both in terms of the huge jump from 1986, and an even more dramatic fall to 1988. The difference between 1987 and the 1993-1998 period is that what happened in 1987 was a sudden jump, which reverted back, while 1993 was a sudden jump and sustained itself from 1994 onward.

        So, when trying to explain 1987, we can discard the first group of events (player controlled). It’s implausible that hitters, as a group, would be able to do anything in the offseason of 1986 to give them a decided advantage over pitchers. Anything they would have done to their minds, bodies and souls would have resulted in a more gradual shift over a period of years. We can also discard the third group, since again, even if teams had decided that the Vince Colemans and Willie Wilsons and Gary Pettises of the world were not for them, this wouldn’t happen suddenly in one offseason.

        That leaves us with the likely culprits of: mother nature, juicing the ball, and the umpires calling a different strike zone. Each of these possibilities satisfies the conditions that something could happen overnight, and it could be undone a year later.

      • cur68 - Jan 9, 2013 at 5:13 PM

        Kirk:
        http://steroids-and-baseball.com/changing-baseball.shtml

    • blacksables - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:45 AM

      Bobby Doerr

      1938 – 5 hr
      1939 – 12 hr
      1940 – 22 hr

      elected in 1987

  12. Sign Ahead - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:10 AM

    I’m not happy with players using performance enhancing drugs, but I’m also very frustrated with the BBWAA. We all, fans, players, owners and journalists, went through the 80s and 90s together, and we enjoyed the crap out of it. While we were enjoying that crap, none of us did a thing about PEDs. We didn’t investigate. We didn’t even question. We just abandoned ourselves to the moment and celebrated what we saw.

    In hindsight, that was wrong. But it’s something that happened, and I don’t want to pretend it didn’t. Even though they’re tainted, I want to remember the era, the events and the people. I want to compare them to the past, the present and the future.

    Sure, the voters of the BBWAA are entitled to their outrage (although outraged writers who actually covered the 80s and 90s should blush a little bit whenever they accuse someone of cheating). But by erasing significant parts of an era, they make the Hall of Fame much less interesting. Without Bonds, and Clemens, and Piazza, and every other player who has been accused of using PEDs, the Hall of Fame simply isn’t relevant to me.

    • louhudson23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:55 PM

      I did not enjoy it. It sucked. It wasn’t baseball. and I screamed about juicing from the rooftops.Earthquake World Series watching Jose and McGwire strut around all freakin blown up pissed me off and I ranted the entire time. And the whole Sosa,McGwire,Bonds fiasco was like watching wrestling. Thank goodness the ball parks are huge once again and the ball is soft and the players don’t stay in wonderful physical condition year round anymore,otherwise we would still be watching HomeRun derby and not baseball,unless somehow ,the increased drug testing has caused a massive decrease in juicers,which has somehow caused a massive decrease in HR production.

      • Sign Ahead - Jan 9, 2013 at 2:37 PM

        This sounds a lot like the baseball version of “I listened to Nirvana before they were popular,” or “Nobody plays REAL library hide-n-seek any more.”

        Just in case you are telling the truth, um…congratulations…and I’m sorry the rest of us ruined it for you. Maybe if you’d yelled a little louder from the rooftops we would have heard you.

  13. ralphdibny - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:22 AM

    So which current HoFer had a career year for homers in 1988? Answer: none of them. But if Boswell was misremembering, and really meant 1987, then it could be either Wade Boggs, Paul Molitor, or Andre Dawson. All three men had career years for homers in ’87, with Dawson’s being especially large and memorable.

    • kirkvanhouten - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:53 AM

      Well, technically Roberto Alomar set a career high in home runs in 1988…

      A *ton* of players had career years in 1987, not just Boggs, Molitor and Dawson. Dale Murphy, Jack Clark, Eric Davis, Brooke Jacoby, Tim Wallach, Dwight Evans, George Bell, Alan Trammell, Tony Gwynn (he would eventually have a few more seasons that rivaled 87, but not until 7 or 8 years later),Tim Raines, Wally Joyner, Juan Samuel, Matt Nokes, Kevin Seitzer…(catches breath)

      The number of players who put up career years in 1987 is staggering. Home runs and runs were up big time that one year. The average team scored 765 runs and hit 171 homers. The year before? 714 runs and 147 homers. The year after? 671 runs and 122 home runs.

      What the hell was going on in 1987?!?!

      • Tick - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:36 PM

        Whatever went on in 87, it was my favorite season of Micro League Baseball as a kid. Larry Sheets was a monster!

      • cur68 - Jan 9, 2013 at 5:19 PM

        I think the baseball changed. Rawlings’ balls tested from 1989 show higher synthetic content in the wrapping. The ones from 1995 onwards show a stiffer core was in the newer balls along with non-wool, synthetic (likely polyester) wrapping. All this = bouncier ball that flies further on contact.

  14. paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:28 AM

    I am sorry. I can’t help it.

    • vanmorrissey - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:36 AM

      Oh MY!!!!

    • sophiethegreatdane - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:44 PM

      I feel like that video was trying to send a message about *something*. But it was subtle and I think missed it.

  15. cardsfan773 - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:35 AM

    Its Ricky. How does no one else see this. Guy had calf muscles like a damn stallion. He also spent his best years with Canseco and McGuire. Oakland was steroid central in late 80’s

    • vanmorrissey - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:54 AM

      Agreed. First guess, yes.

    • plummer2512 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:12 PM

      I’ve always though Rickey. Not only did he play on the same team as Canseco and McGuire but he also played until he was 104 at a very high level. Whenever I hear that someone in the Hall took PED’s, I always think it’s him.

  16. skarfacci - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    Bonds and Clemens should be in. The only reason. Everyone hates them bc there is no rock solid evidence connecting them to steroid use. BBWA is just jealous they couldn’t expose them. In Clemens case they found him not guilty in Federal Court. Shady if they don’t let him in. And Bonds was exonerated by federal grand jury. Apparently the BBWA is above the law.

    • 18thstreet - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:37 PM

      Yeah, and OJ didn’t kill his wife.

      I respect the legal system, but it’s not perfect.

  17. mdpickles - Jan 9, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    There are at least a dozen NFL players that are in Canton who were on steroids. Why is the baseball debate so fierce compared to football? Is it because of the romantic MLB stats?

    • louhudson23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 2:00 PM

      Baseball hitting was clearly more affected than football,therfore the game was more affected. There was no explosion of game altering statistics produced in football. RB’s didn’t mass produce 3000 yard seasons,but 40 and 50 hr seasons suddenly became normal,not to mention the absurd individual records set. .Not since the live ball has the game been so clearly altered.

  18. plmathfoto - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:08 PM

    Ummm does this mean then that Bonds and especially Clemens may have started before the claimed dates (of course neither has ever admitted to anything so hypothetically speaking) and could have been on them their whole careers? Hmmm????

    • ltzep75 - Jan 9, 2013 at 2:46 PM

      No, it doesn’t.

  19. humanexcrement - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:31 PM

    The argument that because some PED users have already slipped through the cracks means we should just ignore PED use in the future is to me incredibly stupid. That’s like saying that because some criminals get away with their crimes, we shouldn’t bother to imprison anyone. No one should be denied HOF induction for suspected or unproven PED use, but those caught red-handed should be kept out. Obviously some people who did it will get in–I’d bet 75% of the power hitters who played in the 90s at one time or another used some form of PEDs. Not all of them will be caught. But the notion that known PED use should be ignored? Not buying it.

  20. ndrick731 - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    Okay so let me get this straight. The writer who believes that PED users should be in the Hall of Fame makes a statement claiming that he knows of one that is already in the Hall of Fame. Here he is someone with a personal agenda and all you people believe anything he says. He has no proof, no names he just wants everybody to believe it because he’s a writer.

  21. takingbovadasmoney - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    LMFAO! Everyone knows the object of the game is to have the best sabremetrics. Winning games is so last century. When will the dinosaurs learn not allowing big innings when you are up 9 – 3 and saving your arm in the process is so Walter Alston. Stats are the object of the game, not winning!

    • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:52 PM

      Which is why HOFers are always elected based on the records of the teams they played on. It’s why Luis Sojo is in the HOF and Ernie Banks is not.

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 12:57 PM

        You do realize that without turning on the sarcasm font, someone will take that literally

      • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:08 PM

        That’s my goal. :-)

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:12 PM

        Fair enough – but I know someday someone will post “I am positive that I once read Luis Sojo is in the Hall”

      • paperlions - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:15 PM

        Haha….and they will be 100% correct. They will have read that somewhere. :-)

    • kirkvanhouten - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:48 PM

      I assume you’re alluding to Jack Morris here…to which I say

      1. Why was Jack Morris the only pitcher who had “save his arm” and “pitch to the score”? What kind of a noodle armed girly man had to do that? Bob Gibson didn’t have to pitch to the score!

      2. Aside from a couple of exceptions, those Tigers teams he pitched on were usually middle-of-the-pack in runs scored. What the hell score was he pitching to!

      3. Do you think it really benefitted the team to stay out their on defense longer and greatly extend the length of the game because Morris is too much of a namby-pamby fussy boy to actually put forth effort when his team has a big lead?

      If you think Jack Morris, on the basis of winning 250 games, posting a 3.90 ERA and about 2,500 strikeouts is good enough for the hall of fame, fine. I can’t argue with your opinion of where the cutoff for the hall should be. But let’s stop making up these silly excuses to elevate Morris to something he wasn’t. You don’t see me arguing that we should put Ray Lankford in the hall because he “hit to the score”, do you?

    • louhudson23 - Jan 9, 2013 at 2:02 PM

      If I could hit that like button 50 times ,I would.

  22. TIF - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:10 PM

    I just don’t see the logic here. The fact that some unnamed player who allegedly used steroids is already in the hall of fame does not justify now voting for players who cheated by taking steroids. How does that make sense? If this is true and a PED user is in the hall of fame, why is the solution to throw your hands into the air and say, “so let’s let all the cheaters in?” I just have a hard to seeing the sense to this argument.

    • missingdiz - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:55 PM

      Why does anybody care about who is accepted into the MLB Hall of Fame? It’s because it’s a type of immortality, which evidently we all seek to some degree or another. If I can’t make it, maybe my hero can.

      I’m not talking about immortality in the religious sense. Old Testament God, Jesus, Buddha, and Mohammed would have had little use for baseball. Maybe the Hindus could work baseball in there somewhere—god bless ‘em!

      Seriously, baseball immortality is of the type that Aristotle and other ancient Greeks believed in—do great deeds and your name will live forever. So it runs pretty deep in Western culture, and probably not just Western, if I understand the Japanese love of baseball at all.

      So, thinking about guys who were already well known and very well paid, what was the motive for taking PEDs? More money? Really? I think it was Brian Jordan who said, more or less, once you’re making 5 million a year, what else do you need? I suppose there have been players with extended families who needed to build everybody a house, but still once that’s done…

      These men wanted to be heroes. I mentioned the ancient Greeks and I’ll add that there’s an element of classic tragedy in this, tragedy brought about because of hubris.

      Let me focus a bit. Everybody wondered about McGwire—why didn’t he just get it off his chest? It always seemed clear to me (disclaimer: I was an A’s fan and saw him play often, and then I gravitated toward the Cardinals). Who did he embrace like a rag doll at the end of his home-run trot? Whose adoration—when millions adored him—did he care most about? I’m talking about his son. Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens also had young sons—I don’t know about everybody else who’s been implicated in the PED mess, but most if not all had kids or other loved ones who looked at them as heroes. When your world is crashing down around you—even if for good reason—you don’t want to look into those adoring eyes and try to explain how you, the great one, cheated. Save it for later.

      So, I think it comes down to this. We really don’t know who took what, for how long, and to what effect. In this regard, lumping “greenies” in with PEDs I think is a mistake. Maybe once in a while for a night game after a long trip, they would help. But you always pay for using amphetamines—sooner rather than later. Amphetamines didn’t enhance performance any more than cocaine or booze. Real PEDs were different in the short term. Nevertheless if players took steroids for long, they are going to pay as well, albeit later rather than sooner.

      I haven’t been to the Hall of Fame, but it’s on my bucket list. When it comes to the PED era, I don’t see how we can sort it all out. In general, I’m reluctant to judge people. But of course as baseball fans we judge all of the time. Maybe there should be a space or display where the issue is addressed from all sides. But if a player, such as Bonds or Clemens, clearly was a superior baseball player, he should achieve baseball “immortality,” even if it comes with an asterisk or a footnote. Some of the Greek gods had their shady sides, which were well known—but they were still gods. I don’t think baseball players are gods or immortal. But within the context of baseball they deserve recognition for what they’ve achieved. If they used steroids to enhance that achievement, I’m confident they’ll pay—to bring the Hindus back in, what goes around comes around. It’s not our, the fans’ or the writers’, job to try to punish people, especially when we have very limited knowledge (or none in many cases) of what they really did.

  23. tvguy22 - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:43 PM

    I think Brady Anderson should get in for 1996 when he hit 267 homers, or something like that.

  24. sparty0n - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:45 PM

    Who knows how long its been going on? After all, did you notice the Babe had a big swollen head just like Bonds!

  25. lessick - Jan 9, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    I’d say that 1985 is probably too early to be making Jose Canseco references–he came up in September of that year. That would rule out Carlton Fisk, Ozzie Smith and Gary Carter.

    That leaves:

    Kirby Puckett 1986
    Rickey Henderson 1986 or 1990
    Wade Boggs 1987
    Andre Dawson 1987
    George Brett 1990
    Ryne Sandberg 1990
    Cal Ripken 1991
    Paul Molitor 1993

    Tony Gwynn in 1986 had his career high relative to his previous seasons.

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