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Murray Chass thinks Craig Biggio did steroids

Dec 26, 2013, 10:27 AM EDT

Murray Chass

Last year Murray Chass promised that this year would be his last Hall of Fame vote. All he wanted was one last chance to vote in Jack Morris because, well, who the heck knows. I presume because it’ll agitate statheads, but Chass has never been one for consistent explanations for what he does and what he thinks.

Anyway, he announced his Hall of Fame ballot today. He’s voting for Morris, Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine. He says he may vote for Frank Thomas.  As for the rest:

The boxes next to these 10 names will not get an X: Jeff Bagwell, Craig Biggio, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Eric Gagne, Paul Lo Duca, Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro, Mike Piazza, Sammy Sosa. These non-exes won’t get my vote because they were proved to have cheated, admitted they cheated or are strongly suspected of having cheated.

1. Aren’t there better reasons to not vote for Paul Lo Duca and Eric Gagne than their steroid use? and

2. Who, besides Chass, “strongly suspects” Craig Biggio of steroid use? I can’t for the life of me think of anyone who has made such an accusation in public.

Oh well, it’s Chass and he’s a full-blown kook, so who knows. What the BBWAA’s excuse is for letting him and people like him continue to vote for baseball’s highest honor, however, is probably a legitimate question.

151 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. stuckonwords - Dec 26, 2013 at 1:00 PM

    Craig. Wow.

    “at present, [BBWBA members] do not have enough younger, smarter members in the ranks to effect such change. The easiest and fastest way to fix its flaws is to expand the membership to brighter and younger people.”

    I know, right? Cuz, you know, old people are all dumb and outdated and “don’t get” what young people “know”. Like:

    – Don’t they get that homosexuality is natural?
    – Don’t they get that all people are entitled to everything, and the government owes that to them and should pay for it?
    – Don’t they get that religions are just dumb, and serve no purpose in a world with 7 billion people in it? Why can’t they understand that there’s no way chaos would come of everyone figuring out that there *is* no life after death?
    – Don’t they get that regardless of those dumb rules about “innocent until proven guilty” that we all know, from the articles we read and people we talk to, when someone is guilty of something? We don’t need no stinkin’ rules!

    Obviously I could go on. But the point is, someday *you* are going to be old, Craig. And all those years you spent thinking you had a clue? The young generation is going to be very clear about the “fact” that not only do you not have a clue, but you *never* had a clue. Only young people get stuff. And all that knowledge and wisdom and experienced you gained? Well…the world ain’t like that now. You’re old, and you don’t get it.

    Thank God for brighter and younger people.

    Wait. There is no God. My bad.

    • Kevin S. - Dec 26, 2013 at 1:12 PM

      Does it hurt to watch the entire world move on without you?

      • stuckonwords - Dec 26, 2013 at 2:53 PM

        See, that’s the funny thing. It’s not that us old dummies being upset that the world is moving on without us. It’s that the young know-betters are upset that it won’t. The fact is, Craig is wishing we’d move on, not that we *have*. And by the time we do, guess what? Y’all will be old by then, and your experience, knowledge, and wisdom will finally catch up with your testosterone and youthful ignorance, and in the end there will *still* be “old folks” running the show. I’m not bummed about the world moving on without me. It’s you, bummed that it won’t.

        Don’t worry. In a few years you’ll finally get your chance.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Dec 26, 2013 at 4:49 PM

        I don’t know how this fits in your worldview but my parents are 91 and 88, and when it was on their state ballot, they voted for gay marriage.

      • jeffa43 - Dec 28, 2013 at 12:59 PM

        Biggio defines a hall of Famer.

        Murray Chass molests collies.

      • tmobrien55 - Dec 29, 2013 at 11:11 AM

        stuckonwords, you may be old enough to remember a thing called “primary sources”. While no specific DNA marker for homosexuality was found in the one study your references are based on, they did conclude that homosexuality was hereditary. From the actual paper itself: “Our model predicts that homosexuality is part of a wider phenomenon in which recently evolved androgen-influenced traits commonly display gonad-trait discordances at substantial frequency, and that the molecular feature underlying most homosexuality is not DNA polymorphism(s), but epi-marks that evolved to canalize sexual dimorphic development that sometimes carryover across generations and contribute to gonad-trait discordances in opposite-sex descendants.” And here is the full paper if you’d like to read it more completely: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/668167#mobileBookmark I am often frustrated by people drawing conclusions without any inspection of a primary source. Usually that’s blamed on the young people of my generation, but perhaps it isn’t wise to paint with such broad strokes.

    • kyzslew77 - Dec 26, 2013 at 1:39 PM

      Trollololololololololol

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Dec 26, 2013 at 3:59 PM

      I know, right? Cuz, you know, old people are all dumb and outdated and “don’t get” what young people “know”. Like:

      – Don’t they get that homosexuality is natural?

      Homosexuality is found in hundreds of species throughout the world. What’s more natural than that? Or is natural following a 1500 year old work of fiction?

      Don’t they get that all people are entitled to everything, and the government owes that to them and should pay for it?

      Know what young people feel “entitled” to? A standard of living similar to their parents, or heaven forbid, their grandparents. However, that’s impossible as the CoL has increased far beyond the rise in pay. You try being $100,000’s in debt and have little to no jobs available to you and see how you are doing.

      However, how’s about the baby boomer generation and their entitlements? When current youngsters will never see a dime of social security, that we continue to pay into, because the BB generation won’t make changes to payouts. Our how about healthcare after retirement? Yeah, call us entitled…

      Why can’t they understand that there’s no way chaos would come of everyone figuring out that there *is* no life after death?

      What does an afterlife have anything to do with following rules? A random reddit comment summed it up perfectly:

      A christian doesn’t rob a bank because he thinks he’ll go to hell afterwards.
      An atheist doesn’t rob a bank because he thinks it’s a d!ck thing to do.

      Don’t they get that regardless of those dumb rules about “innocent until proven guilty” that we all know, from the articles we read and people we talk to, when someone is guilty of something? We don’t need no stinkin’ rules!

      There is no “rule” about innocent until proven guilty, it’s a tenet in our justice system. As any commentor will tell you around HoF voting time, people are free to think someone is innocent or guilty of PED use as they see fit.

      Maybe you should spend what remaining years you have left honing your reading comprehension. It’s a bit out of whack.

      • stuckonwords - Dec 26, 2013 at 5:07 PM

        - Homosexuality can’t be natural, since it can’t be passed on from generation to generation. Adaptation can’t include an evolution that neuters a species.

        – It’s impossible to explain the dynamics of an economy to someone who’s not ever studied it. If you have, then we could have a good conversation about it. But there’s a very good, simple explanation as to why prices escalate. It would also explain why just because you think you deserve something (and I’ll be the first to agree that you/we do) has no bearing on the ability of the government to provide it. First we kinda gotta tighten the belt in other areas, and that’s where the entitlement outcries stymie any chance of fixing things.

        – An afterlife gives people a reason to do or not do things. Religion plays a role in society because society is incapable of doing the right thing (or not doing the wrong thing) just because it’s the right thing (or the wrong thing). Most people do things because of the promise of reward, and don’t do things because of the fear of punishment. Whether your punishment is from someone they call God or from someone the call “Your Honor”, it’s the same. Some people have developed the wisdom and conscience to operate without that. If you think it’s the rule and not the exception, maybe some extra reading from the Sociology department would help.

        – “Innocent until proven guilty” is a tenet fashioned by some quite old, quite wise men, who understood that the masses can easily form an opinion, lynch mobs ensue, and that’s just not how a civilized society works. Yet all you have to do is watch the news on any given week and you can see that regardless of whether a few wise men knew it to be the right way to go, the masses continue to dismiss it. How many people decided that George Zimmerman should spend the rest of his life in prison despite a fair trial? It’s all you heard about afterwards.

        Clever retorts to my points don’t invalidate them. It just makes for fun reading.

      • stex52 - Dec 26, 2013 at 5:34 PM

        I’m an old guy, too, and old enough to know what you are giving us. It’s called a “straw man argument.”

      • clemente2 - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:14 PM

        stuck–wrong on so many counts. You know nothing of evolution; there are all kinds of genetically passed traits that do not make for better survivability–their presence is just not selected against to the extent that particular gene arrangement disappears. Also, homosexual genes (and I know that phrase is really simplifying things) could follow along with other genes that do enhance survivability. And you do not know such genes are themselves selccted for in the sense that brothers and sisters might be more desirable for some reason. Just as a tribe with a few alpha crazies might survive better, and carry those genes along with all the others.

        It is a regular but stupid canard of Tea Party idiots that those they identify as “left” have no understanding of economics because they just want to take from the government without any thought of how it will be paid for. No one serious about such issues thinks this way. The argument is over how to allocate spending amongst various priorities, and how to tax various incomes and assets and transactions to fund such spending. You assume “First we kinda gotta tighten the belt in other areas…”, but that is not certain, and I am sure we would disagree about where to tighten. The past 40 years have proven that the “eventually buyers of US Treasuries will stop buying” contains a long and remote eventually. It certainly does not need to dominate goverment spending and taxing discussions now.

        Your further points are empty.

      • stuckonwords - Dec 27, 2013 at 9:15 AM

        clemente2

        You say I’m wrong as if that is a fact, then proceed to teach me about evolution. You should Google “Is there a gay gene?” There isn’t one.

        See…I actually use science to guide my understanding, not opinions without basis.

      • paperlions - Dec 27, 2013 at 9:47 AM

        Actually, there is a lot of research that suggests that homosexual behavior increases during times of overpopulation as a way to moderate population density but to also decrease stress in individuals….and this tendency doesn’t occur in just humans. Homosexuality is a behavior that certainly has a genetic basis. Although the genome is mapped, we have no idea what the vast majority of it codes for….so don’t go around saying silly things like “there isn’t a gay gene.” because you googled it.

      • stuckonwords - Dec 27, 2013 at 10:08 AM

        paperlions

        There is no gay gene. That was determined. My source is not Wikipedia. I only suggested folks google it because that’s how today’s crowd does their research. It was in “The Quarterly Review of Biology” by researchers from UC Santa Barbara and Uppsala University in Sweden”. It’s a tough read, but there are summaries out there.

        The rest of your points support mine. Homosexuality is a sociological and psychological phenomenon, meaning that its practice is compelled by societal and personal pressures and situations. As I’ve said, I don’t judge people’s decisions, and if that’s what they decide, so be it. But to say that they were “born that way” has been completely dis-proven.

    • drewsylvania - Dec 26, 2013 at 4:02 PM

      You’re stuck on something, that’s for sure.

    • dylanthom2013 - Dec 26, 2013 at 6:49 PM

      Hey, have you proved the universe was made in 6 days, fossils were planted by Satan, and that blacks are an inferior species yet? How about slavery being ok like it says in the Bible? I’ll look for your updates on your twitter feed.

      • stuckonwords - Dec 27, 2013 at 9:30 AM

        Umm…see, y’all misunderstand. I have no belief in any religions. I’m rather convinced that the patriarchs of the bible were none other than the pharaohs. Many books have been written on the subject, and I have been convinced.

        As for homosexuality, I push for tolerance. I don’t agree with that style of life, but I don’t consider it my business to judge. Intolerance and hate crimes are unacceptable, and *that* is what we should be preaching. I just have a problem with the push to accept it as natural.

        Just the same, if people want to be gay, that’s up to them. It helps solve the escalating world population problem (well, US population…much of the rest of the world still thinks it’s insane to condone), and may even reduce the number of teen pregnancies.

    • dylanthom2013 - Dec 26, 2013 at 6:59 PM

      I’m actually a right-winger (pro-death penalty, etc.) and I have to wonder why a brain-dead acolyte of a primitive religion like you should be allowed to live and continue to waste resources that could otherwise be consumed by an actual productive individual. Religious nutcases of all stripes are dangerous and should be exterminated. Where’s a Brazilian death squad to get rid of undesirables when you need one?

      • clemente2 - Dec 26, 2013 at 8:24 PM

        There are arguments in favor of and against the death penalty that have nothing to do with left/right issues. Don’t agree to such labels; they are used to confine and dismiss people. You can use “Tea Party idiots”, however, as confinement and dismissal would do the rest of us good.

    • kruegere - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:12 PM

      How does it feel to know that no one you know expects anything of or from you?

    • stuckonwords - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:19 PM

      @nothanksimdriving123

      Advancing age carries no guarantee of wisdom, but youth guarantees ignorance.

      You’ll want to put quotes around that when you repeat it.

      • clemente2 - Dec 26, 2013 at 8:25 PM

        Having a closed mind guarantees ignorance.

    • kietazou - Dec 27, 2013 at 5:11 AM

      I don’t know if all old people are stupid, clueless cretins, but although I’m no spring chicken myself, you are certainly one, and therefore a worthy defender Murray Chass – the sportswriter who typifies my general opinion of sportswriters: if you have a herd of horses and introduce a number of sportswriters into the corral, the number of horses’ asses increases EXACTLY in proportion to the number of sportswriters.

      In Chass’ case, the number may actually be MORE than one.

      You are, not simply sound like, a very stupid, ignorant and certainly Republican unAmerican fool who should move to Russia. Or Iran.

    • cur68 - Dec 27, 2013 at 10:50 AM

      “stuck”: I read your “Quarterly Review of Biology” by researchers from UC Santa Barbara and Uppsala University in Sweden” (sic) reference. Its not that tough to read. Its quite clear. To sum up: the research suggest that one CAN be born homosexual. It goes on to say that the trait CAN be passed along from parent to child but as an epigenitc mechanism rather than genetic.

      Now pay attention, because this is where you got it wrong: The KEY FINDING was that homesexual epigenic markers are different from the usual epigenic mechanisms which are often erased. The ones that predict homosexual traits are passed mother to son, father to daughter and CAN INDEED run in families (or at the very least, APPEAR to do so: it really makes no difference from an expression standpoint). In other words this study you cite indicates that the new evidence shows that homosexuality can sometimes carryover from parent to child: it is, to a certain degree, heritable.

      In effect, your cited study states, unequivocally, that homosexuality is COMPLETELY in-born. It is NOT a choice. You are born with it like you are born with other epi-genic traits like a tendency to gestational diabetes.

      caveat: the study requires replication. It’s based on accurate predictions from a mathematical model which was based on evolutionary theory, new work on gene expression, and sex hormone-dependent development. Until others can replicate the models predictive success it should be read as “Suggestive of” rather than gospel and even AFTER replication of results it should be evaluated periodically against new work.

      This link goes to the study itself.

      http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/668167

    • sabatimus - Dec 27, 2013 at 4:45 PM

      You can’t be the center of the world, I’M the center of the world! I am! I AM THE COW!

    • chuckleberry1974 - Jan 20, 2014 at 11:43 AM

      You’re saying people can’t handle the truth? You must be a subscriber to the newsletter “Old Ridiculously Outdated Info & It was Better In My Day”.

    • chuckleberry1974 - Jan 20, 2014 at 11:54 AM

      The problem with the BBWAA voting members is that too many are allowed to vote who haven’t covered baseball since before many of the players on the ballot even started to play in the Major Leagues. That’s stupid, old, and outdated. The newest, simplest rule should be that after a certain number of years of not covering the sport, you get to stop voting. Not that hard.

      And yes there will be criteria for what constitutes “not covering” the game.

  2. ottercardinal - Dec 26, 2013 at 1:45 PM

    “at present, [BBWBA members] do not have enough younger, smarter members in the ranks to effect such change. The easiest and fastest way to fix its flaws is to expand the membership to brighter and younger people.”

    Because you claim to young and bright doesn’t mean your better. That’s what’s wrong with this society and people like yourself. You don’t like someone opinion so you instantly lump a group of “older” people into one bad group. Now Chass feelings may not be those of mine, yours or a majority of the people, however he is entitled to his, as we are of him. Keep up the no bias work craig

    • whereyaat - Dec 26, 2013 at 2:45 PM

      Actually, Craig has a valid point. How many young writers can you name in the BBWBA? You know, people below the age of 30?

      OH WAIT – THERE ARE ONLY A FEW? WHY ARE THEY SO UNDERREPRESENTED? DISCRIMINATION!

      WHY DOES BBWBA DISCRIMINATE AGAINST THE YOUNG? WHY DOES THE BBWBA PROMOTE AGEISM BY LUMPING ALL WRITERS UNDER 30 INTO ONE CATEGORY, AND THEN CATEGORICALLY EXCLUDING THEM?

      By the way, weren’t you complaining about age discrimination?

      • stuckonwords - Dec 26, 2013 at 3:05 PM

        I know, right? Same thing goes for congress? Where are all the 20-year-olds? They’re being discriminated against! Those old fogies think they know so much, but those 20-year-olds could teach them a thing or two.

        It’s funny. Every time you turn around you hear rookies say the best advice they get from the veterans and coaches is, “Keep your mouth shut and your eyes and ears open.” Stupid, right? The youngsters always know more than the vets. Just ask them.

        There’s a reason we don’t let the children sit at the adults’ table.

      • clemente2 - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:17 PM

        There is also a reason for old folks’ homes and euthenasia.

    • dszymborski - Dec 26, 2013 at 4:14 PM

      Accusing someone of something without any sort of evidence isn’t a “difference of opinion” it’s woefully unethical behavior.

    • rje49 - Dec 26, 2013 at 4:23 PM

      Facing a situation like this, I ask the young’un: were you smarter at 15 than you were at 10? And did you know more at 20 than you did at 15? (etc.) So at what age does one begin to get dumber? I mean. I’m 64 and I KNOW I know more than I did 10 years ago. So what about it?

      • clemente2 - Dec 26, 2013 at 8:30 PM

        Lots of studies showing that the older you get the less able you are to assimilate information contrary to long-held beliefs, memory, etc. So, it goes in one ear and leaves the other, no matter how valid. Yet, because you have retained less contrary information, it appears to you that you are getting smarter all the time, as you are wrong less and less.

        So, you may be of the minority that really stays open to new information, and does actually know more. But your assertion of it means nothing.

      • paperlions - Dec 27, 2013 at 9:54 AM

        Most people are as smart as they are going to get in their mid- to late-20s. The brain peaks just like the body does. As people grow older they may know (or think they know) more things, but they most certainly are not smarter, do not think as quickly as they used to, and do not assimilate new information as quickly or as well.

    • kruegere - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:13 PM

      you’re*

  3. ottercardinal - Dec 26, 2013 at 1:45 PM

    “at present, [BBWBA members] do not have enough younger, smarter members in the ranks to effect such change. The easiest and fastest way to fix its flaws is to expand the membership to brighter and younger people.”

    Because you claim to young and bright doesn’t mean your better. That’s what’s wrong with this society and people like yourself. You don’t like someone opinion so you instantly lump a group of “older” people into one bad group. Now Chass feelings may not be those of mine, yours or a majority of the people, however he is entitled to his, as we are of him. Keep up the none bias work Craig

  4. meatcarroll - Dec 26, 2013 at 1:51 PM

    Dat Chass!

  5. themagicfanguy - Dec 26, 2013 at 2:08 PM

    Some defensive old people in here.

  6. nymets4ever - Dec 26, 2013 at 2:20 PM

    I didn’t know who this bald dork was before this post…now I know, but just don’t care

    • nymets4ever - Dec 26, 2013 at 8:45 PM

      Just realized, the best thing about my comment was that it’s ambiguous enough to refer to both Murray Chass and Craig hahah

  7. nightrain42 - Dec 26, 2013 at 2:27 PM

    Biggio is not a first or second ballot hofer. You have to be one of the all time greats at your position to get in that soon. Eventually? Probably, but not this soon. Morris? Please. Rings don’t make you great. It makes u a winner, but not great. His numbers aren’t HOF material. If rings did, then Robert Horry wld be the second greatest nba player after Bill Russell. The Morris argument gets none here. And if there ever was a compiler….Blyleven fits that description. Definitely not HOF material

    • clemente2 - Dec 26, 2013 at 4:24 PM

      Biggio is probably a compiler in your sense. Blyleven, no way. He was in the top five of various relevant pitcher categories many times throughout his career. He was not just “around and decent”.

    • raysfan1 - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:54 PM

      7x an all star, 4 gold gloves, 5 silver sluggers. Each of those is flawed in its own, but paints a picture of a pretty damn good player without discussing stats.

      Baseball Reference’s list of the 10 most similar players to him includes 8 Hall of Famers, Derek Jeter–who obviously will be, and Lou Whitaker.

      No, he was not just a “compiler.”

      • cur68 - Dec 27, 2013 at 9:26 AM

        Its like some of these people never even heard of Biggio before this. Beyond the total of awards, there’s a massive logic fail in calling the Biggio a “compiler”. He was a mere 8 or 9 HRs away from 300 yet he didn’t try and hang around to get that. Would have been easy for him, too. That’s what a compiler does, after all.
        He was no compiler: he was a great to good player for a long time. When he couldn’t be a good player, he quit.

        I wish I had the diagnostic capacity to spot steroid fueled performance they way some people do on the internet. I mean, can you do that? Look at an athlete and say “STEROIDS!!!”? All those failed A, AA, AAA guys get caught every year, and not one of these internet diagnosticians spotted THEM. Unless the player was muscular and played really well the Diagnostic Commentariat have NO IDEA AT ALL if the player might have used steroids. Yet, somehow, against all logic, they can do it post facto based SOLEY on performance, some random skin condition, and some other bull crap hocus pocus.

        What’s more galling are that the Murray Chass Media Types (Murray Chass: the Poster Boy for ill-informed PED opinion) can pull this diagnosis out of their butt and smear a guy with it. They do it to Piazza, Bagwell, Trammell and Biggio routinely. If they had any evidence at all, they’d make with it. Instead all they have is innuendo and vague “spots on someone’s back”. Yet these guys can claim to have credibility as journalists and news people. The whole thing is just jaw dropping hypocrisy.

      • raysfan1 - Dec 27, 2013 at 11:43 AM

        Agree completely.

        I’ve suggested to certain people before that they should really offer their services to MLB since they are clearly all-knowing, more accurate than the most cutting edge technology, and thus could save MLB a lot of money.

    • braxtonrob - Dec 27, 2013 at 6:36 AM

      @nightrain, I agreed with everything you said up until Blyleven.
      I used to be against Blyleven being inducted but changed my mind right before he was inducted because I realized, 3,700 SO’s is a heck of a lot, and he was a stellar pitcher early in his career (years I didn’t witness him pitch). Was he borderline? Yes.
      Do I think he deserved induction? Yes.

  8. jrobitaille23 - Dec 26, 2013 at 2:30 PM

    wow, another PED apologist thread. Thing is Craig, many people actually DO think Biggio and most of the MLB stars of the 80s, 90s and 00s were using PED. While PED use does not necessarily mean bigger muscles, it can be pretty obvious to people who work out and are around athletes. So basically…not you. A great example for you who can’t see, or choose not to see how a body can look different with PED is Chicago Bulls player J. Noah. PED use in the NBA is rampant today just like it was in the MLB before better testing and harsher penalties.

    People think steroids only came into effect in the 90s. Why is that? Arnold Swarzenegger and Sly Stallone made muscles popular decades earlier. The Steelers and Raiders as a team did them in the 70s. All athletes from Olympians to tennis players have been using them since so why do people think baseball didn’t? Look for bigger ‘traps’, forearms, thickness in the brow and jaw lines (Lebron James, Hanley Ramirez, Barry Bonds) if you want to see signs.

    Oh hell, why do I bother, this will get downvoted by the blind faithful?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Dec 26, 2013 at 4:06 PM

      Oh hell, why do I bother, this will get downvoted by the blind faithful?

      Has it ever crossed your mind you could be wrong?

      • jrobitaille23 - Dec 26, 2013 at 10:07 PM

        no. I equate it to the reaction of the baseball world to Canseco’s book. He may be a turncoat but he spoke truths about PED use. Many on forums like these said “but not Player A, not Player B’ and then it turns out that yes…Player A and B were in fact using. Then a whole era was under bigger scrutiny and despite ‘testing’ getting more stringent, guys like Braun and Nelson Cruz got busted. But still, you people defended ‘your’ favorite player. No amount of evidence will change some people’s minds.

        I imagine it’s like the early explorers trying to explain that the world was in fact round. They were laughed at and ridiculed. Only decades later were these explorers vindicated. But unfortunately you won’t have the proof as some of you people demand despite all the busted players. We can never know for sure who was and who wasn’t.

        But, when someone who has played baseball, trained athletes, and seen the effects of PED first hand, give their insight, you should maybe be more open minded. It’s more plausible that until testing got stricter many more of these baseball players were taking PED than it is to believe only a select few that got caught were.

        So, no…I know I am not wrong because I can see with my own eyes the tell tale signs and I know the difference between someone natural and someone who isn’t. How can you ignore the drop in power numbers? As pitchers get natural and MPH decrease, and batters swing speeds decrease, the power goes away. It’s seems pretty intuitive but when has this crowd ever been that?

    • jhornberg - Dec 27, 2013 at 6:00 PM

      Give me a link. Show me evidence – actual evidence – that Biggio used. So far I’ve seen nothing.

  9. pastabelly - Dec 26, 2013 at 2:59 PM

    Craig, I believe someone named Perlman from Sports Illustrated put the steroid tain on Biggio. Not sure. Rob Neyer calls out Chass better than anyone.

    http://www.baseballnation.com/2013/12/26/5245584/murray-chass-hall-fame-ballot-craig-biggio-steroids

    If this is Chass’ last ballot, why does he support Morris over Curt Schilling, Mike Mussina, Tim Raines, Alan Trammell, or Larry Walker? All of those players simply had better careers. I don’t understand the fascination with Jack Morris now or when I watched him ptich. If it satisfies some need of the old school writers, then maybe he should be let in the HOF and we can create a newer lower threshhold for others and get Jimmy Key in there too.

    • raysfan1 - Dec 26, 2013 at 8:01 PM

      Pearlman, in 2011, based on nothing more than the fact he was an Astro at the same time as Ken Caminiti. It was discussed here at HBT.
      http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2011/01/10/jeff-pearlman-believes-craig-biggio-was-a-roider/

  10. yousuxxors - Dec 26, 2013 at 3:15 PM

    they need brighter members … young or old

  11. drewsylvania - Dec 26, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    I don’t know how old Murray Chass is. I do know that he is a perennial stupendous dumb@$$.

    • jmbic - Dec 27, 2013 at 8:22 AM

      I don’t mean this as a mean comment or anything but “what I heard,” but I heard Chass has been suffering from dementia for the last decade or so. Might explain a few things.

  12. hopespringseternal - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:20 PM

    A wise person once said, “never engage in a battle of wits with the unarmed”.

  13. disgracedfury - Dec 26, 2013 at 8:03 PM

    He’s wrong about Biggio maybe Bagwell.Morris should be in though.Best pitcher of the 80’s and unlike Maddux picthed in a hitters park in the AL.

    • clemente2 - Dec 26, 2013 at 8:39 PM

      He was not the best pitcher of the 80s. He was less of a pitcher than Dave Stieb, among many others. He did pitch alot of innings, at just above league average for his career, which for a long career is quite good. Not a Hall of Famer.

    • btilghman - Dec 26, 2013 at 10:37 PM

      Wait, are you really implying that Morris was a better pitcher than Maddux?

    • raysfan1 - Dec 27, 2013 at 11:45 AM

      Dan Petry was better, just didn’t last as long.

  14. baseballisboring - Dec 26, 2013 at 9:17 PM

    Can’t spell Chass without ass.

  15. blynch67 - Dec 26, 2013 at 9:23 PM

    Craig Biggio is a class act, and Murray Chase is a Classic Ass. Craig starred at Seton Hall University here in NJ, before playing 20 years for the Astros. He came up as a Catcher, moved to 2nd base, the Outfield, and eventually back to 2nd base.

    BA .281
    Hits 3,060
    HR 291
    RBI 1,175
    SB 414

    All-Star

    1991 (Catcher)
    1992 (2nd Base)
    1994 (2nd Base)
    1995 (2nd Base)
    1996 (2nd Base)
    1997 (2nd Base)
    1998 (2nd Base)

    Gold Glove

    1994: National League Gold Glove (2nd Base)
    1995: National League Gold Glove (2nd Base)
    1996: National League Gold Glove (2nd Base)
    1997: National League Gold Glove (2nd Base)

    Other Awards

    1989 NL Silver Slugger Award (C)
    1994 Baseball America NL All-Star 2B
    1994 NL Silver Slugger Award (2B)
    1995 NL Silver Slugger Award (2B)
    1997 NL Silver Slugger Award (2B)
    1997 Branch Rickey Award in recognition of his exceptional community service.
    1998 Houston Astros Player of the Year
    1998 NL Silver Slugger Award (2B)
    1998 Baseball America First-Team Major League All-Star 2B
    2004 Texas Baseball Hall of Fame inductee
    2004 Texas Sports Hall of Fame inductee
    2005 Hutch Award
    2006 Heart & Hustle Award
    2007 Heart & Hustle Award
    2007 Roberto Clemente Award

    Highlights:
    Led the Majors in runs scored in 1995 and 1997 and in doubles in 1998 and 1999.
    In 1997, became the first player in baseball history NOT to hit into a single double play while playing an entire 162 game season.
    In 1997, scored 146 runs, which is the most of any National League player since the Phillies’ Chuck Klein scored 152 runs in 1932.
    Tops the Astros’ career list in games played, at-bats, runs scored, hits, doubles and extra-base hits.
    In 1998 became the second player to have 50 stolen bases and 50 doubles in the same season. The only other player to accomplish this is Baseball Hall of Fame member Tris Speaker.
    Holds the National League record for most lead-off home runs in a career with 53.
    7-Time All Star.

    • jrobitaille23 - Dec 26, 2013 at 10:10 PM

      Without PED his numbers are nowhere near the end results. Both for his power numbers and longevity. He also played in a bandbox, in front of another steroid abuser and during an era of expansion. That said, of all these ‘suspected’ players, his versatility and numbers should put him in. He didn’t fail a test and though I wouldn’t vote him in, someone from this era that was suspected should make it.

      • raysfan1 - Dec 26, 2013 at 10:40 PM

        The Astrodome was no bandbox, and that was his home stadium for over half his career, especially his peek years. To date, the only proof of any PED use–or even real suspicion of it–is from Jeff Pearlman, Murray Chass, and I guess you. Pearlman and Chass base their suspicions on the very scientific reasoning that he was a teammate of Ken Caminiti’s.

      • jrobitaille23 - Dec 27, 2013 at 1:55 AM

        @raysfan1 I can’t believe I am wasting my time responding but here goes. He played in Minute Made Park for the back half of his career and hit almost half his career homers during that time. And his power numbers increased right in the thick of the steroid era. Oh, and despite still producing in his late 30s into his early 40s he hung it up. What happened that season of 2006/2007?..the Arod fallout and steroid testing. What a coincidence.

      • braxtonrob - Dec 27, 2013 at 6:46 AM

        @jrobitaille,
        The reason his numbers increased genius is because he moved from Catcher to 2B.

        (I so tire of the stupidity that overlooks what position a player accumulates his batting stats at.
        I guess you have to have played the game to know when these things, and to recognize one of the all-time great 2Basemen.)

      • raysfan1 - Dec 27, 2013 at 7:52 PM

        Last one from me on this subject–
        Biggio played 11 full seasons in the pitcher-friendly Astrodome and 8 in the hitter-friendly Enron/Minute Maid. He did indeed hit 139 of his career 291 HRs at Minute Maid. In percentage that’s roughly 42% of his career and 47% of his HRs. However, it’s false to use that to indicate he did not decline naturally. He never lead the league in doubles again after his age 34 season, his last at the dome. His batting average, OBP and stolen bases all declined. Had the team not moved to such a hitter-friendly park, his statistical decline would no doubt have been pronounced. On the other hand, had his peak years been at Minute Made, he would likely have significantly better career hitting stats.

        Steroid testing began in 2004. The A-Rod steroid confession was in 2009. Biggio retired at age 42 after the 2007 season. Coincidence? Pretty obviously so.

        Is playing for the Astros evidence of PED use? No.
        Is staying in shape, working out, and staying healthy evidence of PED use? No.
        Is playing in the steroid era really evidence of PED use? Not when one realizes ballplayers have used steroids for over 50 years, not 20.
        Is stable power production after moving from a pitcher friendly park to a hitter friendly one evidence of PED use? No.
        Is anybody’s eyeball test worth anything? No.

    • buttercupstruelove - Dec 27, 2013 at 1:20 PM

      He’s also the all time leader in doubles for right handed hitters and all time leader in HBP.

      For doubles: Speaker (left) 792
      Rose (switch) 746
      Musial (left) 725
      Cobb (left) 723
      Biggio (right) 668

  16. rohlo - Dec 26, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    fhack murray chase!!! nobody writer..nobody cares wth you think….

  17. rohlo - Dec 26, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    typo * murray chass not chase…

  18. pastoraparrish - Dec 27, 2013 at 1:33 AM

    Listen, Craig Biggio’s use (or lack thereof) of steroids has nothing to do with
    – The existence of God
    – The presence of a homosexual gene
    – Macro-/Microeconomics
    – Old vs. Young

    Now, the comment made about Chass being a cook is an invalid point, having nothing to do with the price of rice in China. When we are dissecting facts in an argument, opinion has nothing to do with the situation. Chass is entitled to his opinion, but there has never been a definitive answer as to whether or not Craig Biggio doped. Biggio looks now as he looked then. He was never that impressive physically. What stood out to me as far as an Astros teammate was the photo of Jeff Bagwell the year after he injured himself and attemped to return, only to retire. He looked puny, nothing like the robust Bagwell we had always known. He was a twig, skinny as a rail and looking far from the power hitter we were used to. That, to me, screams steroid usage, but, if we are going on the basis of fact, not opinion, we have absolutely NO proof that Bagwell ever doped. This generation will forever be tainted as the Steroid Era. There is no way around it. Yet, my thought on it is this: if you had something that made you do your job better, you would probably do it, right? At this point, nothing was said about PEDs in sports, as they were unheard of. If you, say, as a letter carrier, had a substance that made you deliver your letters and packages quicker and more efficiently, chances are you would not hesitate to use it, unless there were laws against it. In this case, there were none. What this all boils down to is this: Sports are here for entertainment purposes. We pay to see long home runs, speedy guys, and hard hits. Do steroids help provide those? Yes. Is it cheating to be better than your natural self through the use of some substance? The argument can be made on both sides. Roman soldiers used spikes on their sandals to dig into the ground when many opposing forces didn’t. Weightlifters use creatine and ungodly amounts of protein to build bigger muscles. Street racers use NOS to boost their speed. Performance enhancers are essentially universal in all manners of occupations, entertainment not withstanding. Singers use teas and other throat care items to make their voices tip top, in addition to using equipment in studio to perfect their voices. The list goes on and on. Stick to the topic at hand, and realize that we are debating about something that is for entertainment purposes, and if Barry Bonds used steroids to hit the ball farther, then, regardless of what made the ball go so far, it was cool seeing these guys test the limits of how far they could hit it. It made baseball enjoyable for even the most impatient of fans; can’t say they didn’t try everything they could to put butts in the stands, can we?

    • jrobitaille23 - Dec 27, 2013 at 1:41 AM

      http://cdn3.sbnation.com/imported_assets/1369059/mlb_bagwell_biggio_275_medium.jpg

      THIS Craig Biggio was on PED imho. There is clearly a huge difference between his early years, late years, and in this photo. He is jacked plain and simple.

      • jberlat - Dec 27, 2013 at 4:59 PM

        Biggios stats didn’t suggest he was on steroids. He was working out with Bagwell.

    • braxtonrob - Dec 27, 2013 at 6:54 AM

      @pastor, Thank you! Finally, a voice of reason. :) Well said!

      I highly recommend the writers stop dissecting the choices (via PEDs) and just accept the fact that it will forever be the Steroid Era, when MLB refused to catch and punish.

      They’re HOF’rs, period. We all know it to be true, so stop letting the list get out of hand and start voting them in (before we have to elect 10 every single year just to catch up).

      [I can't 'unsee' their phenomenal performances, so for me, there stats are what they are.]

    • buttercupstruelove - Dec 27, 2013 at 1:12 PM

      Bagwell may or may not have used. But to think his muscle loss “screams steroid use” is terrible logic. It’s not based on anything but you staring at pictures of other men.

      He was a body builder with a strong weight lifting regiment his entire career. I still remember reading a lot of articles about his workout routines. After his shoulder degenerated, he wasn’t able to lift anymore but still tried to make a comeback anyway. It’s also why he wasn’t able to throw the ball but had to push the ball to the pitcher instead. Not being able to lift for a while will cause a lot of muscle loss. It’s no surprise that he lost a lot of muscle mass after his shoulder injury. You would too, if you had muscles like him.

      Again, I’m not saying he didn’t use but your visual proof is lacking.

    • mhinzi - Dec 27, 2013 at 2:57 PM

      You are correct in your explanation as to why PED’s shouldn’t matter but baseball is the exception. Baseball is the one sport where statistics are the measure for a players success now, then and will be in the future.

    • jberlat - Dec 27, 2013 at 5:01 PM

      If there was proof Bagwell used, the media would have already reported it. Who cares about Rafael Palmerio. He wasn’t a HOFr anyway.

      FYI, there are laws about using steroid illegally. Just like using Coke or smoking pot is illegal.

  19. dirtydrew - Dec 27, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    What about the roiders already in the HOF? Ripkin, Ryan, Puckett and the whole gang. Wake up BBWA, either you let in all the best players, starting with Pete Rose, or close down the whole museum.

    • jberlat - Dec 27, 2013 at 4:57 PM

      You are suggesting Nolan Ryan did steroids?

      • jamesdabear - Dec 29, 2013 at 11:37 PM

        It’s as much of a fact as Biggio or Bagwell or Thomas using them.

  20. jberlat - Dec 27, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    Unless there is proof, there is NO WAY Biggio was doing steriods. Bagwell might have, but you can’t not put someone in if you THINK they did. How many players haven’t been caught or went in using. This guy is an ass.

  21. snarkk - Dec 28, 2013 at 1:44 AM

    So, how does Murray Chass KNOW that Glavine and Maddux did NOT use ‘roids? How does he or any of these other idiot writers KNOW who did and did not do “roids? Half or more of these writers enabled the steroird era — they knew what was happening, and reported zilch, nothing, nada. They were part of it, in on it. But, now, they act like their hands are clean. How do LaRussa, Torre and Cox ride into the HOF on a cloud, yet they had plenty of players play for them that were “suspected” of being ‘roiders. MacGwire and Canseco — ground zero for ‘roid use with the A’s — but, LaRussa gets into the HOF as if he was clueless? The BBHOF is now officially a joke…

  22. dwil - Jan 9, 2014 at 12:06 AM

    Biggio was a very good player. All-timr great? Not quite, but he was better than other players already included in the HOF, so he will get there sooner than later.

    However, Murray Chass isn’t the only person who charges Biggio with PED use. Many players intimated that Biggio was right there with the rest of MLB players trying their bets to get through an insane baseball schedule in which players are asked to perform at their very best while playing 162 games in 182 days; fewer days off than a 5-day a week worker. The players asked not to be named for fear of blowback against them – and no one should blame them. either.

    I do find it odd that longtime voters like Chass, et al. fail to take into account that, likely, 90% or MORE of MLB players from the 1950s through today use speed – “greenies” as they were called, for the color of the pills – as the season stretched into the dog days of, compared with today, crappy air flights, crappy accommodations, day-night double-headers, and no modern forms of recuperation from all this. Players like Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford, Hank Aaron, and many, many more admitted as much! Yet none of these voters EVER mentions this fact that all of their beloved players were, after the end of a baseball season, forced to, on some level, go through withdrawals from their copies speed use (if you don’t believe me drink a bunch of coffee every day for a couple of months and then quit cold turkey and tell me how you feel for a few days after you stopped!).

    These same voters – some younger ones, too – also fail to remember or don’t know a guy named Barry Bonds was a HOFer before anyone ever thought that he might be using PEDs. They also either don’t remember or are ignorant (thanks to sports medai) of a moment I certainly will always remember.

    It was spring training and following Bonds’ every move was Pedro Gomez of ESPN. This day, though, accompanying Gomez was Peter Gammons. The two men approached Bonds post game as he sat in the dugout with his son. They chatted live, on air for all the world to see. When they asked Bonds how his knees felt, he laughed, turned around and pulled a jar from the dugout shelf. His pant legs were already rolled up as he began to apply some of the contents of the jar to his knees. He said, “Maaan, the rest of me is good but my knees feel like they’re 80. I’m putting this flaxseed oil creme on them because I was told it would help. I don’t know if it will but at this point I’ll try almost anything to make these knees feel better!” Bonds, Gammons, and Gomez shared a hearty laugh, as Bonds proceeded to rub the creme on his knees. After he was done he told Gomez a joke, picked up his son and waved adios to the two, venerable baseball writers.

    Bonds. On national television, just before Sportscenter, so there were plenty of eyes on the screen watching. “The creme.” Flaxseed oil. Exactly the substance he always maintained he used, not PEDs. His body? It’s doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that you will put on a mass of bulk if you switch from light weight-lifting every three days (which Bonds said he did for most of his career) to maintain your strength, to lifting as much weight as you can every day for strength (which Bonds told Gomez in another live, spring training interview while he flexed and other Giants players made fun of Bonds’ new-found body and with it, even more heightened ego).

    Yeah, Barry was proud of the work he was putting in. He also broke the single-season home run record that year. when Mark Fainaru-Wada began his Bonds witch hunt (his primary source was Bonds’ jilted “side piece”?!?!) and when the feds happily found a face to go with their cause (opposed to common thought, no one ever came close to proving Bonds used any illegal drug other than greenies) Pedro and Peter conveniently forgot those spring training days. Pedro and Peter forgot all the time Bonds gave them when he didn’t have to.

    Pedro and Peter, most importantly, forgot that they watched Barry Bonds use flaxseed oil creme on his knees after every spring training game —- right there in the dugout for all the world to see. EVERY day. EVERY game.

    Or. maybe Pedro and Peter didn’t want to go against the popular winds and defend Bonds. Even today, if you tug against mainstream and Internet sports media’s popular opinion cape too hard, you’ll find yourself without a job.

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