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No, Derek Jeter will not play the anti-PED hero for you

Feb 27, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

jeter-reuiters Reuters

If that headline sounds familiar it’s because I used one remarkably like it two weeks ago. Then, as now, I do so in response to a Bob Klapisch column. Then, as now, Kalpisch is using his column in a desperate effort to make Derek Jeter into some kind of anti-PEDs hero.

Two weeks ago he did so via comparison between Jeter and A-Rod. Today Klapisch actually tries to get Jeter to say all of the anti-PEDs things he likes to say. To get Jeter to come out firing against A-Rod and everyone who uses PEDs, whom he refers to as “baseball’s felons” (yes, really). The best/worst part: there’s a desperate fanboy element to it all which is almost embarrassing:

That’s why I asked the captain about his message to young fans about steroids — specifically whether he’ll use the farewell tour to renounce performance-enhancing drugs once and for all . . . All it would take is a few words from Jeter about the dangers of using PEDs — to one’s career, health and reputation — and he’d likely get through to some kid on the fence.

And of course Jeter doesn’t do that. Because there is absolutely zero in his history or what we know of his character that would inspire him to put himself out there on a controversial subject like this. He is far too smart for that and, based on his very words, both in the past and here, explains that he is not going to do it. Yet, despite him not taking Klapisch’s bait, Klap concludes thusly:

I have no doubt Jeter disapproves of both players’ use of PEDs and the lies they’ve told along the way.

He has to believe that. To not believe that may cause him to question whether the guy he thinks is some cross between God and Superman has a nuanced thought about a topic that isn’t nearly as black and white as Klapisch likes to claim it is.

I really can’t recall when I’ve ever seen a more blatant instance of a baseball writer projecting like Klapisch is projecting here. It’s almost enough to make me feel sorry for him.

  1. umrguy42 - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:04 AM

    Obligatory: ARGLEBARGLEFARGLE CRIAG YOU PED APOLGIST!

    • zzalapski - Feb 27, 2014 at 10:57 AM

      Took all of 10 minutes for this to be fulfilled. Your prescience is acknowledged.

      • umrguy42 - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:10 PM

        Alas, at this rate, it’s a given. It’s almost a Godwin’s Law-level thing. Maybe I’ll call it “Calcaterra’s Law”: “On any given thread by Craig involving PEDs, the probability that a commenter accuses Craig of being pro-PED approaches 1.”

  2. themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:14 AM

    Kalpisch’s article is journalism these days? This is baseball journalism, is it? he might as well consider himself a paid Yankee employee

    • alexo0 - Feb 27, 2014 at 1:21 PM

      He’s not?

  3. nymets4ever - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:14 AM

    Craig – while it’s true Jeter hasn’t voiced an opinion one way or the other (standard operating procedure for the most boring person in baseball history), believing him to be a PED hater is way less of a stretch than believing him to be a PED lover the way you are.

    • hammyofdoom - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:19 AM

      And to say that Craig is saying Jeter is a PED “Lover” is an ever bigger leap. All he’s saying is that he is no anti-PED spokesperson, sort of like how earlier in his career there was a lot of expectation for Tiger Woods to be a spokesperson for African Americans simply because he happened to be a black golfer. Just because Jeter is a great baseball player whom we have no real reason to suspect did PED’s doesn’t mean he despises them, nor does he want to wade into the whole debate.

    • detectivejimmymcnulty - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:51 AM

      You know everyone makes dumb comments on these threads every now and then, but has there ever been a poster who posts only dumb comments? Nymets4ever must try to make horrible comments because I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a logic comment from this poster.

      • hammyofdoom - Feb 27, 2014 at 11:46 AM

        Yeah I really haven’t seen much from him that I would put in the realm of “good”, but I will say seeing stuff like that is what will make me sign in to say something, so there is that!

      • dcarroll73 - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:35 PM

        Now, be fair. He did come out against racism in one of the Jackie Robinson threads. I hate to admit it, but he is not the first Mets fan I know to call Jeter “boring”. I guess they would rather have controversy, drama, and losses galore.

    • Craig Calcaterra - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:55 AM

      Yeah, I have zero reason to think Jeter is pro-PEDs and wouldn’t bet a cent on it. But of course that’s not my point here.

      My point is that this particular member of the media is so rabidly anti-PED that he is transparently trying to enlist Jeter to speak for his cause in order to validate himself. When there is zero reason to think Jeter would ever do that. It speaks to just how personally — and in this case emotionally — invested some in the media are in their crusade. And it shows that anything this guy says on the subject is so infused with that emotional crusade that it should be dismissed and laughed at.

    • Old Gator - Feb 27, 2014 at 11:54 AM

      Gotta hand it to mutts4ever. Starting with his gong show performance on the Hayhurst thread, his ranting and raving has resolved into a slurping noise that tells you the Coriolis effect is now in full control.

      • raysfan1 - Feb 27, 2014 at 12:21 PM

        I read the Hayshurst post when Craig first put it up and did not comment as I’ve not yet read any of the three books. Your comment made me go back and look at the comments section of that post. In the midst of his rants he as much as admitted he has not read the books either and thus has no idea of what the heck he was talking about. I wish I could say I was surprised, but I was not. It seems to be his modus operandi.

  4. bostonboresme - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:21 AM

    When will people finally realize that the only thing the man cares about is rings?

    • paperlions - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:26 AM

      …and privacy….and gift baskets.

      • Francisco (FC) - Feb 27, 2014 at 10:55 AM

        Those two go hand in hand.

  5. jeffbbf - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:56 AM

    Tired act. Quit trolling other writers just so you can put up another tired post. Christ, read your comments once in a while. We’re all sick of it.

    • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 27, 2014 at 10:05 AM

      I suspect you are the one who doesn’t read the comments. We are by no means sick of it. A few are. But, by far, these posts get the most traffic. There are some incredibly informed people chatting here, too. You’d do well to read some of the research cited and perhaps modify your thinking on why you feel your opinion is everyone’s opinion

      • chip56 - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:22 PM

        And for a few of you Craig could type names out of the phone book and you would think it is the next great work of American journalism.

      • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:59 PM

        Seriously? That’s what Craig does? Your comment is at once hilariously stupid and embarrassingly revealing of you. “Big man. Bigger thoughts” is it? That is too funny. Thanks for the ROF Laugh.

      • chip56 - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:19 PM

        Hey douchebag – I said that if he wanted to do it you fan boys would still slobber all over him. You’re right – you’re absolutely a tool of ignorance.

      • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:23 PM

        Big Man. Bigger Thoughts. I am laughing still

      • chip56 - Feb 27, 2014 at 4:06 PM

        I’m glad I could entertain you. Though quite frankly given your likely intelligence level you probably are entertained by singing purple dinosaurs.

        What those who have a higher than 3rd grade comprehension level read that you did not, was that the insinuation is that for you fanboys, the content of Craig’s articles is not important. The fact that Craig wrote them makes them precious to you. The fact that you either won’t accept any criticism of his work, or (and this is more likely) don’t have the aptitude to understand criticism of his work pretty well proves the point for me. Any one who is critical of anything the Great and Powerful Calcaterra is beset upon by you flying monkeys. Such loyalty is admirable in dogs, but pitiful in most human beings who, one would think, are capable of free thought.

        Now, my suggestion is that you sit down and have someone read the big words in this message to you and if you’re still confused…well tough. Either way, I’m done wasting thought on you.

      • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 27, 2014 at 4:28 PM

        Goodness. Such a screed. My dear lad, you’ve quite lost the plot, haven’t you? I fear for such a big man with such big thoughts. They are more than you can carry, obviously. Have a nice lie down with a cup of something soothing, ok?

      • historiophiliac - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:53 PM

        I don’t know about that, but I’d pay to watch Denzel Washington read names out of the phone book. :P

      • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:01 PM

        I would be partial to Bridget Moynahan doing the same

      • Old Gator - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:15 PM

        I’m sorry Roland Barthes didn’t live long enough to explicate a random page from a phone book. He did wonders with restaurant menus, though:

      • dcarroll73 - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:43 PM

        I once heard Richard Burton read names from a phone book on a talk show. It was almost Shakespearean – very moving. Sort of the audio complement to Eisenstein’s montage footage.

      • historiophiliac - Feb 27, 2014 at 4:18 PM

        Oooh, I also like it when James Earl Jones reads Facebook updates.

    • stex52 - Feb 27, 2014 at 10:07 AM

      No one’s making you stay, Jeff.

    • hammyofdoom - Feb 27, 2014 at 11:50 AM

      I personally love Craig posting stuff like this if for no other reason to see people like you get bent out of shape about what someone posts on their own blog. I, personally, find it to be the HIGHEST level of entertainment.

      Oh, and thank you for speaking out for me, but I don’t need a representative to tell me what I’m “suck of”. Stick to speaking for yourself there bud.

  6. raysfan1 - Feb 27, 2014 at 9:57 AM

    “‘If I were to say things a certain way, the way some people want me to say them, it would turn into a headline,’ Jeter said.

    He smiled thinly. ‘My job is to limit distractions in here, not cause them.’”

    One wonders if Klapisch has the insight to know Jeter was talking about him.

    One also wonders if his brain would short circuit if he stopped and realized that, when Jeter states there are penalties in place for those who are caught, he is saying essentially the same sort of thing Craig does on the subject.

    • themanytoolsofignorance - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:22 PM

      Do you know who Jeter reminds me of? Nick Carraway from The Great Gatsby. In particular, these thoughts on the images confidences others try to force him into -

      “The abnormal mind is quick to detect and attach itself to this quality when it appears in a normal person, and so it came about that in college I was unjustly accused of being a politician, because I was privy to the secret griefs of wild, unknown men. Most of the confidences were unsought—frequently I have feigned sleep, preoccupation or a hostile levity when I realized by some unmistakable sign that an intimate revelation was quivering on the horizon—for the intimate revelations of young men or at least the terms in which they express them are usually plagiaristic and marred by obvious suppressions.”

      • dcarroll73 - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:47 PM

        I wonder if, like Nick Carraway, he will disappear back to the Midwest when the drama has concluded?

  7. sdelmonte - Feb 27, 2014 at 10:30 AM

    I do wonder, though, why Jeter can’t just say “yeah, steroids aren’t good and kids shouldn’t use them.” That wouldn’t be the least bit controversial. I get that he likes to be Mr. Bland, but sometimes it gets a bit silly. Then again, people like Klapisch are probably why he does it.

  8. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Feb 27, 2014 at 11:12 AM

    Jeter seems to have managed to hit PED users and PED non-users throughout his career. No PED user has ever taken his job or forced him to sign a below-market contract. PED users have not prevented him from dating the most attractive women in NY or Hollywood.

    Perhaps he simply doesn’t care.

    • Old Gator - Feb 27, 2014 at 12:00 PM

      In what category do you think he’d put Viagra?

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Feb 27, 2014 at 12:19 PM

        Jeter has always had excellent bat control. I would guess he would put it in the “Commercials I Mute” category, if he categorizes it at all.

    • paperlions - Feb 27, 2014 at 12:01 PM

      This…a 1000 times this. I really don’t think he gives a crap. He may even have enough information after watched various players use various PEDs over the years to think they aren’t worth him having a strong opinion one way or the other.

  9. pastabelly - Feb 27, 2014 at 12:11 PM

    Yup, while I disagree with Craig’s ambivalence to PED users, I agree with him on this one. If Bob Klapisch wants to glom onto someone here, go for it on Ryan Dempster. He’s not corporate like Jeter. He was pissed off about PED users and made a statement with his fastball. When he couldn’t pitch in 2014 because of physical problems, he didn’t take PEDs or even just collect his paycheck. He walked away. He took a lot of heat from the public, the media, and even David Ortiz, and he was also suspended. Bob Klapisch, it’s too bad your spokesman isn’t the good looking Yankee Hall of Fame poster boy. It’s freaking .500 Ryan Dempster. Deal with it.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Feb 27, 2014 at 12:25 PM

      “He was pissed off about [one particular] PED user(s) [ only when on the other team ] and [ by breaking MLB rules himself he made a statement with his fastball [ that from 60'6" away he is willing to hurl a potentially lethal projectile at someone to pander to his fan base].”

      I corrected it a little bit for you.

  10. mgflolox - Feb 27, 2014 at 12:51 PM

    Doesn’t it seem like Jeter is this millennium’s version of Steve Garvey? I’m not suggesting he’ll end up facing multiple paternity suits or anything, but the way sportswriters love to ascribe such All-American virtues to him is remarkably similar. I’ll tell you this, though, IF Jeter ever turns out to be as humanly fallible as the rest of us are, those same writers will turn on him like a pack of rabid dogs.

    • raysfan1 - Feb 27, 2014 at 1:47 PM

      Point taken, and your last comment is no doubt correct. However, it bears mentioning that much of Steve Garvey’s All-American image was purposely created and nurtured by Steve Garvey. Jeter, on the other hand, appears to accept the attention without seeking it.

      • mgflolox - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:34 PM

        Good point, but I think it’s fair to say that Jeter has worked very hard to craft and maintain his own image. However, he doesn’t appear to seek out attention nearly as much as Garvey did.

      • raysfan1 - Feb 27, 2014 at 3:54 PM

        Agreed

    • zzalapski - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:25 PM

      I’m pretty sure Jeter will fare better than Garvey in HOF voting.

  11. disgracedfury - Feb 27, 2014 at 2:01 PM

    Since the media needs a villain or scapegoat in A-Rod they want Jeter to be a hero and approve of this witchhunt which Jeter isn’t gonna do.

    Jeter isn’t gonna act like Bloggers like Heyman,Sherman ,The Daily News or the MLB Network which is being MLB paid goons.Jeter doesn’t like PED’s but isn’t gonna act above it and judgmental.

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