Saturday, January 08, 2011

Talkin' Baseball

I don't have a beef with this week's selection of new inductees into Baseball's Hall of Fame--Bert Blyleven and Roberto Alomar each deserved it. But, Assistant Village Idiot casually calls HOF balloting "insane in its selections, except the first year." I'm not so dismissive. Despite some oddities -- Bill Mazeroski shouldn't and Barry Larkin and Tommy John should -- I mostly approve the choices. Unless Jack Morris ultimately makes it.

Still, what about players linked to performance-enhancing drugs? Oh, one may scoff, but -- in addition to stats -- character matters (see Pete Rose; that's why Alomar wasn't elected last year). Were I a voter, I wouldn't support a player who flunked a drug test or admitted juicing (see Rafael Palmeiro).

Except, except: what about players who subsequently admit and apologize (see Mark McGwire)? And what about players widely believed to have used PEDs, but (so far) never caught (see Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens). I wouldn't vote for any of those three. Yet, can PEDs be distinguished from once-ubiquitous "greenies" (amphetamines), testing for which began only in 2006?

Most importantly, what happens in 2013 when Bonds, Clemens and Sammy Sosa become eligible? Please don't propose an asterisk--which doesn't in fact exist in any event.

(Note: This post's title is a reference to Terry Cashman's classic 1981 song.)

1 comment:

Assistant Village Idiot said...

It is true that the HoF does eventually get it mostly right, so perhaps the method shouldn't bother me. It has been the veteran's committee that has bailed the hall out on a lot of this, though.