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Wait — all A-Rod had to do was to say he was innocent? That would have worked?

Aug 6, 2013, 11:32 AM EDT

Alex Rodriguez Getty Getty Images

Sensing a meme this morning. Bob Klapisch:

A-Rod can whine all he wants about due process, but that’s just a smoke screen to cover his guilt. In fact, Rodriguez couldn’t bring himself to say he’s innocent during his pre-game press conference on Monday. Over and over, Rodriguez kept saying “we’ll have a forum” to discuss the charges against him. If A-Rod was truly innocent, it wouldn’t have hurt his case to look into the cameras and say, “I’m clean, Bud has the wrong man, and I intend to prove it.”

Mike Vaccaro:

He talked about “respecting the process” that Major League Baseball and he will engage in over the next few months, now that baseball has slapped him with a 211-game suspension and Rodriguez has appealed it. “Please have patience,” he said. “There’ll be a time and a place for that.”

This is what he didn’t say:

“This is an outrage. These are fabrications. I am completely innocent … No. Because those are the things an innocent man says.

I think that the media has already determined that if A-Rod said that sort of thing it’d be something a liar says, but let us not dwell on that.

Let us instead note that it’s totally possible that A-Rod didn’t say he was innocent because he knows saying such a thing would be a lie. A lie that people would kill him for. And maybe it’s the case that he’s going to stipulate to drug use but mount an appeal based on the notion that a 211 game suspension is too great for a first time sanction. Heck, it’s what I’d do if I were representing him. At least if the evidence against him is as bad as many say it is.

But maybe I’m just being too hard-headed about this. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe if A-Rod had walked into that press conference and said “honest guys, I’m innocent” then Klapisch and Vaccaro and all the others would have said today that he did the right thing and they wouldn’t be excoriating him in print.

Or maybe they’re just mad today that A-Rod didn’t give them a chance to call him a liar again. But I’m just spitballin’ here.

  1. chadjones27 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:35 AM

    We see how well the “I’m innocent” card worked for Braun last year. Yeah, sure, everyone believed him.

    • jwbiii - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:08 PM

      Bonds, Clemens, and Sosa, as well.

  2. bluburt - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    I don’t care what dem witches say, let’s just burn them at the stake…!

  3. Old Gator - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:45 AM

    Regardless of A-roid’s objective guilt or innocence, these dumbshit columnists and Spawrts Tawrk Raydeeo hosts need to be locked in a closet with their eyes held open by surgical clips beneath an artificial tears drip feed and forced to watch A Cry in the Dark over and over until their smug sanctimony begins to soften around the edges.

    Journalism has managed to degrade itself from what was once a profession with something called standards, to the level of used car and snake oil sales. Spawrts journalists have led the charge downhill.

    • scoutsaysweitersisabust - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:49 AM

      I get the feeling you would really enjoy the new Sorkin show The Newsroom. Journalism has really sold out and turned down the path paved by TMZ and the Brittish Paparazzi. It’s all about sensationalism and collecting views and HYPE! HYPE! HYPE! Screw responsibility, facts, double sources, logic, or reason. Those things are boring. And who has that kind of….Hey A KITTY!!!!!

      • heyblueyoustink - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:44 PM

        It’s news entertainment, not news media. Then again, much like why I don’t get people bitching about gas prices:

        We the people, in general, buy all this this bullpucky part and parcel, and in bulk.

    • ilovegspot - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:22 PM

      How is the press supposed to downplay one of the greatest hitters of all time being a career long cheater. Arod is what he is and even calcuterra can’t sugar coat that.

      • Old Gator - Aug 6, 2013 at 1:14 PM

        My guess is that your gspot is located in your brain stem, the part you inherited from the lower vertebrates with a minimum number of metabolic functions to regulate.

      • bsbiz - Aug 6, 2013 at 2:28 PM

        This is likely the best insult I have ever read and likely will be the best one I see all year. Congrats, sir.

    • sdelmonte - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:47 PM

      Which makes the idea of the owner of the Red Sox buying the Boston Globe that much sadder.

      At least Jeff Bezos can save the Washington Post.

      (I work in PR. These things matter to me.)

    • paperlions - Aug 6, 2013 at 2:05 PM

      Man, why the hate for used care salesmen?

  4. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:48 AM

    Worked for Ortiz…

    • Glenn - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:27 PM

      Ortiz’ case was the one time that info was leaked from the Mitchell report and the MLBPA came forward to explain that all positive tests were not for steroids, etc., basically backing up Ortiz’ claim that he did not take illegal PEDs. It doesn’t mean that he didn’t, but it was interesting that his leak was treated differently by the union.

  5. jayscarpa - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:48 AM

    Do Aaron, DJ, and Matthew get annoyed that they have to cover baseball stories while you enjoy your fetish?

    • number42is1 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:53 AM

      Arod is still a baseball player… I’m just sayin

      • jayscarpa - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:48 PM

        It’s a blog entry about writers, not ARod.

  6. number42is1 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    “But I’m just spitballin’ here.”

    CHEAT!!!!!

  7. cur68 - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:53 AM

    The A-Rage is strong with this one….

    • Glenn - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:29 PM

      He is not the A-roid you’re looking for.

  8. proudlycanadian - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    I am sure that Bob Klapish is completely innocent. He did not have sex with that woman, Miss Lewinsky. He did not take money by pretending to be a sports writer. Everything he writes is the gospel truth and is rigorously fact checked. He does not abuse pets as has been implied by unnamed sources.. Klapish is as pure as the driven snow in an Ohio winter.

    • bsbiz - Aug 6, 2013 at 2:29 PM

      He’s cleaner: clean as the pristine waters of Lake Erie.

  9. Youknowimright - Aug 6, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    At this point, I think it is safe to say that A-rod is a sociopath or atleast exhibiting significant sociopathic tendencies. He has to know that he is wrong here. Doesn’t he?

    • number42is1 - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:13 PM

      Can’t he just be a pathological liar? not saying he is but I think that is more likely than being a sociopath… right?

      • Youknowimright - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:19 PM

        I think it all comes full circle, at some point, but yeah, if pathological liar works for you then fine. He’s something though.

  10. Uncle Charlie - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:14 PM

    Good thing there aren’t any real baseball stories to talk about, you know like close divisional races, trout vs. Cabrera II, the fucking pirates WINNING!

    • paperlions - Aug 6, 2013 at 2:08 PM

      Eh, people have already written about all that…and there is still plenty of time to do so as each of those things are continuing stories that will evolve over the rest of the season.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 6, 2013 at 3:24 PM

      trout vs. Cabrera II,

      This isn’t going to be a story at all. there’s almost zero chance Trout wins, for the same reasons we saw last year.

  11. eagles512 - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:26 PM

    I’m convinced most sportswriters are idiots.

  12. bh192012 - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    I’m not following, those authors don’t seem “mad” they seem to be pointing out the obvious, that ARod doesn’t seem to be taking a “I’m completely innocent” approach.

  13. myhawks1976 - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:39 PM

    Craig, I believe the horse is dead. seriously, you’ve made your OPINION, clear. how bout some REAL baseball stories.

    he is in fact. an over the hill, drug infused, terrible salaried, quickly declining, no better than average hitter at this point. making him quite…. overreported.

    • jwbiii - Aug 6, 2013 at 6:39 PM

      He was actually quite good last season. Not $29M worth of good, but certainly better than average.

      http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=3b&stats=bat&lg=al&qual=y&type=8&season=2012&month=0&season1=2012&ind=0&team=0&rost=0&age=0&filter=&players=0&sort=17,d

  14. chip56 - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:41 PM

    Craig, going back to the column you wrote about outrage as it concerns Alex, I think you left out a very important group…the people who are just tired of Alex and his act.

    I’m part of that group. I was raised to believe that some ball players can be role models but not all ball players are role models (much like all thumbs are fingers but not all fingers are thumbs); and that it is up to us as parents to discern the difference for our children. With Alex, my problem isn’t moralistic. While it bothers me that a player with that kind of talent would lie and cheat, it doesn’t shock me to my core because he always struck me as sort of a douche anyway.

    My problem with Alex is that he’s on my team. That it makes it less fun to root for a team with him on it because he is such an unlikeable character; that he can’t just go out there and be a baseball player like Bernie Williams or Don Mattingly, that he has to immerse himself in drama. Not just steroids, but everything…getting caught cheating on his wife, calling the paparazzi to take pictures of him sun bathing, opting out of his contract during the World Series, dumb quote after dumb quote…he’s just not worth it.

    If you look back at the most recent Yankee dynasty, they were mostly a drama free club. There were some divas (Jim Leyritz, Ruben Sierra) but they were mostly weeded out and others (David Wells, Roger Clemens) put their stuff aside and blended into the team. Not Alex though. He makes it hard for me, as a fan, to like this team because every time you want to root for him he opens his mouth and something stupid comes out of it. And what’s more, you can almost see a trend that as his ability has decreased the drama in which he surrounds himself has increased. When he was great the controversy surrounding his contract and the requests in it was minimal, now that he’s in the twilight of his career look at where we are.

    So Craig, it’s not outrage. It’s not that I hold ball players to some unachievable higher standard or that I’m applying my moral ethos to ball players – it’s that I’m fatigued. I want my team back. I want the Yankees to be about baseball again – not Alex Rodriguez.

    • petey1999 - Aug 6, 2013 at 1:51 PM

      Well said, Chip. Even as a hard core Red Sox fan, I’d like you to get your team back.

    • paperlions - Aug 6, 2013 at 2:12 PM

      I completely get what you are saying here. Genuine question: how much of the ARod drama is actually Arod-induced rather than just the media creating mountains out of mole hills?

      Again, I totally get that this being a story is his fault, he cheated, but the only thing that he appears to have done differently than the other suspended guys is to be really really good at baseball. It just seems like so much of this is the media trying to take down an unlikable guy that makes a crap-ton of money, and is one of the best baseball players of all time.

      How much of the blame for the media storm should be ARod’s? If he talks (which he does too much), he gets blasted no matter what he says. If he DOESN’T talk, he STILL gets blasted for NOT talking.

      • chip56 - Aug 6, 2013 at 3:08 PM

        I agree that it has become a self fulfilling prophecy with Alex. The media and fans expect him to be a drama-laden distraction and so everything he does is turned into a drama-laden distraction. And, in some respects, the Yankees have been at fault in this too (Brian Cashman cursing out Alex for saying he feels great earlier this year).

        But haven’t we reached a point where the why doesn’t matter? Haven’t we gotten to a point where we’re just going to have to accept that for whatever the reason, whatever the motivation and regardless of who is ultimately responsible, Alex Rodriguez on the field is not worth having around any more because of what Alex Rodriguez off the field has become?

        Honestly, what I would almost appreciate more would be if Alex did a complete 180…if he adopted the same “screw you” mentality that carried Bonds through the end of his career. Barry didn’t come off as insincere or two-faced because he didn’t try to pretend he was a good guy. That, coupled with the fact that he maintained a high level of performance, I think made things easier for the Giants and their fans then this.

        Bonds was a bad dude, but at least he wasn’t a joke – that’s what Alex is, more than anything else – he’s a punchline to other fans and just someone a Yankee fan can’t feel good about rooting for.

    • anxovies - Aug 6, 2013 at 4:03 PM

      As a Yankee fan, thanks petey, I felt the same way about the Sox when they went through their problems. Congratulations for getting back on track, I hope that we do the same very soon. Chip, I primarily judge ARod by what he has done on the field and I have never seen him take a play off (like Cano) or fail to give his best even, with age and injuries creeping in. If you watch the dugout shots the players seem to appreciate him and accept him as a teammate and he reciprocates. His troubles off the field are his own fault but they have been greatly magnified because of his unfortunate personaility traits and where he plays and the team he plays for. Ty Cobb was a psychopath and a virulent racist who was despised by his own teammates, Ruth was a boozer, womanizer and a bad father and husband, Gaylord Perry cheated his way to 314 wins and into the HOF. Nobody is calling these great players a monster or a criminal.

      • chip56 - Aug 6, 2013 at 5:04 PM

        I hear you and understand what you’re saying about Ruth, Cobb and others and no doubt baseball has had some bad guys in its history and has bad guys today.

        But my point, and maybe it’s a selfish point, I never had to root for Cobb, or Ruth, or the racists who plagued Jackie Robinson or John Rocker or Vince Coleman or Albert Belle or Manny Ramirez or any of these guys who were either bad people, distractions or both. I never had to root for a team they played for. I do root for the Yankees and, like I said, I don’t care that Alex brings drama, I care that he brings drama to the team I care about.

        You’re right about him on the field; he busts his butt out there every play – he was willing to give up the notion of being the best short stop in the history of the game to play for the Yankees and accommodate Jeter and was never given an iota of credit for it (nor did he seek one). But that doesn’t change the fact that he just is such a farce, such an unlikeable character that it actually outweighs any possible benefit of having him on the team.

        If Alex plays the rest of the year, helps the team get to the playoffs and then carries them in the playoffs to a championship we, as Yankee fans, won’t be able to celebrate that championship because the national and local media won’t let us celebrate it because of Alex’s role in it. It would be “yeah you won it, but you had the cheater of all cheaters help you.”

        Everything this team does, with him on it, will be tainted.

  15. jfk69 - Aug 6, 2013 at 2:11 PM

    Guilty or innocent? Who cares.
    I need to know how many likes on facebook and what they are thinking on twatter. Will this covered by TMZ.

  16. jfk69 - Aug 6, 2013 at 2:15 PM

    Jeff Bezos…Will you first publish the facts in your new purchase The Washington Post? Or should I wait to buy the hard copy on Amazon.

  17. anxovies - Aug 6, 2013 at 3:40 PM

    Bob Klapisch: Your honor the police broke into my home without a warrant, planted the evidence and arrested me and now the district attorney wants to send me to jail without a trial. This is a violation of due process of law!

    The D.A.: He’s just using the 4th, 5th and 14th Amendments as a smoke screen to hide his guilt, your honor.

    The Judge: The D.A. is right, Mr. Klapisch, you can’t fool me with this constitutional mumbo-jumbo. 20 years!

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