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No one seems to have the knives out for Marlon Byrd

Sep 4, 2013, 10:36 AM EDT

Marlon Byrd

There’s a player who is helping a team with its playoff push. That player is having his best year from a power-hitting perspective of his career at age 35. That player was recently given a 50-game drug suspension. That player is represented by the ACES agency.  Given all of that you’d think he’d be public enemy number one among the PED police, but he’s gotten little if any scrutiny. That player is Marlon Byrd.

Today Bob Nightengale of USA Today talks to Byrd about all of that. Nightengale writes that “there are people out there convinced he’s cheating, that somehow, someway, he has found a way to circumvent the system,” but I really can’t recall anyone actually questioning Byrd this year. For the most part it’s been “nice season” and “hey, what a good free agent pickup by the Mets.” I can’t recall anyone talking about him as if it was certain he was cheating or anything.

Which, good. Byrd got caught last year and did his time. He’s been tested this year and has passed them all. It’s nice that, at least in his case, people are willing to let the past be the past and allow the drug testing system, as opposed to their irrational convictions, decide if the player is clean or not and if he’s deserving of vilification or not.

Not sure why some players get treated fairly like Byrd is and some don’t, but it happens all the time.

  1. chill1184 - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:40 AM

    Its funny really why the mental midgets in the MSM didnt go after Byrd. Here you have a guy who got suspsended because of taking a bad substance and was wearing a Mets uniform. Two of the things the pathetic excuses for sports journalists hate, especially when they desperately wanted something to take the heat off the Yankees with the A-Rod stuff.

    Personally Im hope Byrd gets the Pirates to the World Series and maybe gets NL comback player of the year. Both are a stretch

    • santosjeffrey5677 - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:03 PM

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  2. riverace19 - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    If Braun wasn’t such a pompous a** he may have been treated better also, but he is, so he wasn’t.

  3. chew1985 - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    He’s what we should all strive to be; a decent human being. That always helps.

    And there you have your tip of the day.

  4. Francisco (FC) - Sep 4, 2013 at 10:56 AM

    Let’s get serious. The ONLY reason PEDS have been elevated to some sort of moral sacrilege equivalent to murdering babies and raping pregnant mothers is because of the broken HR records. That’s IT. If someone on PEDS had broken the single season stolen base record or the single season hits record, we would have nowhere NEAR this level of agita over the damn things. Fer crying out loud they put an ASTERISK on a guy’s single season HR record because he played eight more games than the previous record holder. That should tell you how warped this HR record worship really is.

    • aceshigh11 - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:18 AM

      That’s a really good point.

      The home run holds this mythical, magic quality among certain people who get all misty-eyed when talking about the sacredness of “the game”.

      I don’t really get it. Home runs are fun…they have the ability to blow a game completely open with one swing, or END a game with one swing. They’re exciting and thrilling, but it’s been elevated beyond its importance to the game.

    • grumpyoleman - Sep 4, 2013 at 3:27 PM

      Home runs don’t matter now either.

  5. steelpenbucs87 - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:03 AM

    How on EARTH has this been posted for 24 minutes and no one has mentioned that Marlon BYRD was interviewed by Bob NIGHTENGALE, never mind Craig not mentioning it in the article…. for shame.

    If I can’t rely on HBT Articles/Comments to destroy lame puns then I’m not sure what this world is coming to.

    • bleedgreen - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:12 AM

      Oh…? Haven’t you heard?

      • bleedgreen - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:19 AM

        Well, there seems to be an absence of a certain ornithological piece, a headline regarding mass awareness of a certain avian variety.

    • bsbiz - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:15 AM


      There’s a time to inject, a time to ingest
      A time to repent, a time to protest
      A time to clean up the game, a time to make a mess
      A time to make puns, I swear it’s not right now.

    • prostock75 - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:16 AM

      Um, he did mention that Nightengale interviewed him

      • steelpenbucs87 - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:21 AM

        Byrd, sounds like Bird. Nightengale sounds like Nightingale which is, you guessed it, a bird. As I mention in the second part of my comment, “If I can’t rely on HBT Articles/Comments to destroy lame puns then I’m not sure what this world is coming to.”

        I don’t know about you, but I expect a higher standard of terrible puns from my sports bloggers/commenters. If we begin to let these things slip by, where does it end?

    • nolanwiffle - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:19 AM

      Orinthology ain’t what it used to be.

      • bsbiz - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:29 AM

        That’s because he’s still doing four years in a Nevada prison on those armed robbery charges.

      • nolanwiffle - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:48 AM

        But, if the falconry glove don’t fit…….

    • lightcleric - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:34 AM

      This is really going to put a dent into Craig’s PAR.

  6. apkyletexas - Sep 4, 2013 at 11:04 AM

    Good – I hope he’s still juicing. My Pirates need 2 or 3 good juicers so we can win something this year.

    You know – just like the Yankees and Red Sox and Giants and Rangers?

    • jwbiii - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:47 PM

      So you’re saying that Jason Christiansen, Humberto Cota, Brendan Donnelly, Luis Figueroa, Jose Guillen, Tim Laker, Matt Lawton, Josias Manzanillo, Denny Neagle, Ronny Paulino, Armando Rios, Benito Santiago, Dan Serafini, Ron Villone, and Kevin Young weren’t enough? We won’t discuss Barry Bonds – they won when he played for them.

      • apkyletexas - Sep 4, 2013 at 1:28 PM

        Your list is stupid.

        1. Jason Christiansen – New York City steroid dealer Kirk Radomski claimed he gave PEDs to Jason while he was with the San Francisco Giants
        2. Humberto Cota – got busted while with the Rockies minor league team, one year after being released by the Pirates
        3. Brendan Donnelly – named by Radomski as seeking steroids in 2004 while with the Angels. Over 6 years later, he pitched half a season for the Pirates

        Should I continue? If you are going to go to all the trouble to look up all the names on the Mitchell Report and see if any of them ever played for the Pirates, wouldn’t you want to check to see if they played for the Pirates during the time they were alleged to have juiced?

        Or are you just trying to spread a little dirt around to cover for your Yankees? The team who put Brian McNamee on their payroll?

  7. gunpowderjones - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:00 PM

    Many of us Bucs fans still revile Braun and A rod as terrible dirty cheaters but love the Byrdman. I don’t get it

  8. junglerat524 - Sep 4, 2013 at 12:58 PM

    Because it’s Pittsburgh. Nobody cared. Just sayin.

  9. giantssb42champs - Sep 4, 2013 at 1:11 PM

    We all either fall victim or benefit from the double standards of society.

  10. chip56 - Sep 4, 2013 at 3:12 PM

    Craig – I hope that the question posed by your article was a rhetorical one. The reason I hope that is because I don’t want to think I’ve been reading the columns of someone too dense to realize that a nothing player like Marlon Byrd will never face the same kind of scrutiny as a superstar like Alex or Braun would.

    No one cares about Byrd because even if he played his career entirely clean he was not going to the Hall of Fame, he has no legacy to tarnish or protect, he will be the holder of exactly zero records…I’m sure that when his suspension is up no one will throw a stink about Francisco Cervelli if he were to put together a good year either.

    Anyway, in the spirit of the High Holy Days, I am hoping that the question was rhetorical and you already knew this answer before asking it, simply in hopes of drumming up conversation.

  11. grumpyoleman - Sep 4, 2013 at 3:24 PM

    Who says he is getting treated fairly. Maybe he has just tried staying under the radar so he isn’t treated like the rest of the PED scum like he should be.

  12. psunick - Sep 4, 2013 at 3:27 PM

    I totally agree, chip.
    assuming Craig’s post was rhetorical/page count seeking, Byrd did not
    lie to everyone or drag out the case via appeal.
    Is Craig referring to anyone other than the two you mentioned?

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