Skip to content

It’s spring training for PED moralists, too

Mar 17, 2013, 10:14 PM EDT

Blue Jays' Melky Cabrera hits a two run double against the Yankees during the first inning of their MLB spring training baseball game in Dunedin Reuters

Hey, not everyone can show up in March with their PED outrage in mid-season form. Scott Ostler is going to need to get a few more reps in after this performance:

Among the things that ain’t what they used to be: the shame and disgrace of being busted for steroids.

Exhibits C and C: Bartolo Colon and Melky Cabrera.

They’re both back in baseball – although Colon has five games left on his suspension – and will be earning nice paychecks, without having to go the Hester Prynne route (look it up, you lazy kids!) where you wear your sins forever.

[snip]

Cabrera’s salary, what could have been and what now is, is about business, not morality. Same with Colon.

It’s hard to tell exactly what Ostler is arguing other than oblique outrage.┬áColon and Cabrera have done — or will have done, in Colon’s case — their time and paid the price, according to MLB’s drug policy. And that’s where the buck should stop.

Despite Ostler’s insistence that players caught using performance-enhancing drugs don’t wear a “scarlet letter”, some most certainly do. After an impressive 2007 season at the age of 42, Barry Bonds and his agent stated loud and clear he still wanted to play and would take the Major League minimum salary after earning $15.5 million the final year of his contract with the Giants. $390,000 for a player coming off of a season in which he hit 28 home runs and posted a 1.045 OPS? Somehow, every single GM in baseball passed.

Was it his age? Proneness to injury? Jamie Moyer earned $1.1 million last season at the age of 49 after recovering from Tommy John surgery. In his age 40-47 seasons, Moyer had an aggregate 4.40 ERA. If Moyer could land a job, why couldn’t Bonds? It was the “scarlet letter”. Not every player wears one, but it certainly isn’t non-zero as Ostler implies.

And yes, Cabrera and Colon will collect paychecks and get ample playing time in 2013 after getting caught using performance-enhancing drugs. As is their collectively-bargained right as Major League Baseball players.

Many sportswriters’ tunes would quickly change if they themselves had to endure the level of punishment — sports McCarthyism, in a nutshell — they consistently call for with scathing column after scathing column. Speed to the ballpark to get into the clubhouse sooner to break that sizzling piece of news? Banned from the press box for life.

Latest Posts
  1. Dodgers announce Vin Scully will return for 2015 season

    Jul 29, 2014, 11:17 PM EDT

    vin scully getty Getty Images

    Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times passes along the fantastic news that Vin Scully will return to the Dodgers’ broadcast booth for the 2015 season. It will be his 65th season calling Dodgers baseball.

  2. Jon Lester scratched Wednesday amid trade speculation

    Jul 29, 2014, 10:50 PM EDT

    jon lester getty Getty Images

    Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan wrote Tuesday afternoon that “sentiment among competing executives is unanimous” that the Red Sox will trade left-hander Jon Lester before Thursday’s July 31 deadline. And this news will only add to that thought.

  3. Video: Jose Abreu slugs MLB-leading 31st home run

    Jul 29, 2014, 10:21 PM EDT

    jose abreu getty Getty Images

    Watch as White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu slugs a two-run seventh-inning shot off new Tigers reliever Joakim Soria on Tuesday night at Comerica Park in Detroit …

  4. Rays are “talking and willing” to trade ace lefty David Price; Cardinals and Dodgers interested

    Jul 29, 2014, 9:34 PM EDT

    david price getty Getty Images

    CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman heard from a Rays-connected source Tuesday that the Rays are “talking and willing” to trade ace left-hander David Price and the Cardinals and Dodgers are known to have interest.

  5. Cubs shift setup man Neil Ramirez from Triple-A Iowa to the major league disabled list

    Jul 29, 2014, 8:41 PM EDT

    neil ramirez getty Getty Images

    The Cubs made the curious decision to option reliever Neil Ramirez to Triple-A Iowa on Saturday despite his 0.96 ERA in 28 innings, but that option has now been voided and Ramirez has been transferred to the 15-day major league disabled list with a sore triceps.

  6. Michael Pineda ready for rehab assignment

    Jul 29, 2014, 7:58 PM EDT

    michael pineda getty Getty Images

    MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports that right-hander Michael Pineda threw a successful simulated game on Tuesday afternoon in front of manager Joe Girardi and has been cleared to begin a minor league rehab assignment later this week.

  7. Phillies wanted Joc Pederson, Corey Seager, and Julio Urias from Dodgers for Cole Hamels

    Jul 29, 2014, 7:03 PM EDT

    cole hamels getty Getty Images

    FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi reported Monday that the Phillies have made ace left-hander Cole Hamels available ahead of Thursday’s July 31 trade deadline, but the asking price on him is apparently sky-high.

  8. Padres activate Everth Cabrera from the disabled list

    Jul 29, 2014, 6:20 PM EDT

    everth cabrera getty Getty Images

    Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera is back with the Padres for Tuesday’s series-opener against the Cardinals after missing nearly four weeks with a left hamstring strain.

  9. Matt Cain is going to pay a visit to Dr. Andrews

    Jul 29, 2014, 5:31 PM EDT

    Miami Marlins v San Francisco Giants Getty Images

    No ballplayer wants to fly to Birmingham, Alabama during the season for a very, very good reason.

  10. Rockies activate Justin Morneau from the disabled list

    Jul 29, 2014, 5:17 PM EDT

    Justin Morneau Rockies AP

    A strained neck put Justin Morneau’s comeback season on hold, but the Rockies have activated the first baseman from the disabled list for tonight’s game against the Cubs.

  11. The Nationals and Orioles dispute over TV money is about to explode

    Jul 29, 2014, 4:58 PM EDT

    MLB Commissioner Bud Selig speaks during a news conference in New York

    And Bud Selig’s years-long effort to manage a quiet resolution of it is apparently a failure.

  12. Red Sox have a fallback plan for Wednesday’s start in case Jon Lester is traded

    Jul 29, 2014, 4:46 PM EDT

    World Series - St Louis Cardinals v Boston Red Sox - Game Two Getty Images

    Maybe this happens all the time and we just don’t hear about it, but Red Sox manager John Farrell admitted just now that the team has Brandon Workman lined up to start Wednesday’s game in case scheduled starter Jon Lester is traded before then.

  13. Foot injury knocks Marlon Byrd out of the Phillies’ lineup

    Jul 29, 2014, 4:22 PM EDT

    Marlon Byrd Marlon Byrd

    In what could throw a wrench into the Phillies’ plans to trade Marlon Byrd before Thursday’s deadline, the 36-year-old outfielder is out of tonight’s lineup after fouling a ball off his foot yesterday.

  14. “Caucasians” t-shirts are hot sellers on Canadian Indian reservations

    Jul 29, 2014, 2:30 PM EDT

    Caucasians

    But . . . I was told Wahoo outrage was nothing but liberal white guilt . . .

  15. Pirates looking into “mental component” of Pedro Alvarez’s throwing problems

    Jul 29, 2014, 2:19 PM EDT

    Pedro Alvarez AP AP

    Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez’s throwing issues have gotten so bad–including an MLB-leading 21 of his 23 errors on throws–that Jenn Menendez of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette reports the team is starting to look into “the mental component to find the root of the problem.”

  16. HBT Daily: the Sox are shopping Lester . . . and Lackey too?

    Jul 29, 2014, 1:30 PM EDT

    HBT Daily Logo

    The Sox are in last place and are going nowhere. Time to deal starters?

  17. Watch Clayton Kershaw play William Tell with Jimmy Kimmel

    Jul 29, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    Clayton Kershaw Clayton Kershaw

    He’s a braver man than I am. By that I mean Kershaw for going on Kimmel’s show.

  18. Gerrit Cole throws five shutout innings in rehab start

    Jul 29, 2014, 12:18 PM EDT

    Gerrit Cole Gerrit Cole

    On the disabled list with a strained lat muscle, Pirates right-hander Gerrit Cole tossed five shutout innings Monday in a minor-league rehab start at Triple-A.

  19. Once healthy, Brandon Morrow will likely rejoin the Blue Jays as a reliever

    Jul 29, 2014, 11:50 AM EDT

    Brandon Morrow Brandon Morrow

    Brandon Morrow was one of the league’s best starters in 2012, but he’s been an injured mess since then, including a current disabled list stint for a torn tendon in his right index finger.

Featured video

Red Sox shopping Lester and Lackey
Top 10 MLB Player Searches