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Who's next?

Posted by Eric Wilbur, Boston.com Staff February 9, 2009 09:25 AM

Big news today from fashion site Marie Claire: “Madonna’s ex-boyfriend ‘tested positive for steroids’” Whoa.

Wait, that’s A-Rod? Eh, never mind then.

Alex Rodriguez (allegedly) did steroids? Excuse me while I stifle my bewilderment.

Oh, that’s not to deny that it wasn’t a bombshell that fell over the weekend, thanks to Sports Illustrated’s Selena Roberts, who brought us an altogether juicy, fascinating, and ultimately incriminating story that will have legs well into spring training.

And then…

Not that all Major League baseball players should be assumed guilty until proven innocent, but at this point it’s going to take a lot of convincing for someone to prove to me why a guy I have an inkling about isn’t going to be the next name dropped.

A-Rod, check. Who’s next?

Any Red Sox fan with the audacity to revel in the news surrounding Rodriguez, had better grip onto something should the remainder of those 103 names ever be released. We all have our suspicions of certain guys, of course, which isn’t to necessarily lump them into the “list.” But to be honest, I’m tired of living in assumptions and bygones. At this point, I want facts. I want names.

Otherwise, I’ll just go on with my presuppositions about certain guys. You tell me which is fairer.

Foxsports.com’s Ken Rosenthal writes that when he told his 17-year-old son - oddly enough not a baseball fan considering his dad’s passion for the game- about A-Rod on Saturday, he wasn’t exactly bowled over.

"If I've heard of him, he used steroids," Rosenthal writes for his son’s answer.

There you have it, Bud. Nice game you’ve run here.

One thing that struck me yesterday after seeing clips of the now-infamous “60 Minutes” interview with Katie Couric again is that when Rodriguez denies ever having taken steroids, he says, “no,” but slightly nods his head, “yes.” I mean, I no body language expert or anything, but it doesn’t take a genius…

Does this mean anything for A-Rod and his legacy? Andy Pettitte has already shown us all it takes is a simple, vague apology and all will be forgiven. Roger Clemens has shown us that these allegations can ruin your entire life.

Which way does A-Rod go? Is he the needy player who wants everyone to love him? Or is he so stuck in ego that he’ll fight the truth?

Here’s the kicker in all this: Tony Massarotti is right; this all kind of makes us feel bad for the guy. The very same guy that New Englanders can’t get enough of kicking when things are down, is undeniably being unfairly singled out on a list that probably contains more than its fair share of eye-openers and kicks to the groins for certain ne’er do wrong fanboys. You want to start planning that “Ster-oids” chant for when A-Rod makes his first plate appearance at Fenway this season? Fine. Just don’t be a hypocrite and “Rodney Harrison” your own guys should one of their names be next on the list.

The real outrage in this report should be held for baseball’s wonderfully duplicitous and scum-sucking union brothers, including Gene Orza, who allegedly warned Rodriguez when his “unannounced” test would be happening. In 2004. So, for how long and to how many ballplayers has the union been blaring warning sirens? And how can we assume that they still aren’t doing as much today?

Instead of complete indignation for what Bud Selig, Donald Fehr, and the hundreds of cheating, avaricious athletes looking to make their next million, we’ve given up, satisfied to simply label it the “steroid era,” and move on to the next game, dreaming of opening our Cracker Jack boxes and maintaining the comfortable cliché of America’s pastime.

After all, with all due respect to Dr. Faraday, you can’t change the past. Why dwell on it?

But that’s precisely what we’re doing now in the midst of baseball’s latest scandal, which has once again landed in the laps of the New York Yankees. Normally, we’d celebrate this sort of dysfunction in the Bronx. But with 103 names to go, and public demand growing for the remainder of the list, you know it’s only a matter of time before the next name is “leaked” to the public. And you may not like what you hear.

But will you be surprised?

8 comments so far...
  1. Much as I have hated A-Rod as a Red Sox fan, I had always been happy about one thing: he would erase Bonds' home run record "honestly," and put that behind us. Um, not so much maybe...

    Posted by Brian W. February 9, 09 10:51 AM
  1. Nobody cares... Except sactimonious writers who turned a blind eye for the past 30 years anyway. We dont care that all the NFL does is a 4 game suspension, and thats it. Let it go, its NO different than a DWI, or being captured in a photo doing Pot. The media has so completley saturated this issues that we are all numb to it.

    Posted by DJA February 9, 09 11:38 AM
  1. Wait...Madonna's ex-boyfriend? They broke up? How did I not know this?

    Posted by J-Bone February 9, 09 12:15 PM
  1. The other players should be listed. But since A-Rod is putting up video game stats compared to everyone else, that explains the focus on him. I'm not sure about the alleged nod, Eric. Not everyone is as smooth as Katie Couric on the screen. I did find the last comments curious, when he was asked whether Bonds or Ruth was the true home run king. It was as if A-Rod was giving his future defense. Guys like A-Rod, Bonds, Clemens, and others have really blown it. They could have put up hall of fame numbers without being cheaters. You and Tony are ultimately wrong here to moan about the other players not being outed. It's a fair point. But it is also one that reeks of letting the prime beneficiaries of the steroid era seem to have been just one of the guys.

    Posted by Nick Faldo February 9, 09 01:11 PM
  1. The numbers say that there were/are an average of 2.5 players per team that tested positive for PED's in 2003. If isn't difficult to sit down and figure out whose bodies have changed dramatically...or whose performance has spiked in an unnatural way...or whose body has broken down literally overnight for no obvious reason...none of us should be shocked when the list of the addtitional 103 names becomes public. How do we know for sure that current players are not using HGH...there is still no test for it. Does anyone really believe that players who tested positive in 2003 were just caught once...and hadn't been juicing for years previously? Let's not be naive...

    Posted by Pistol Pete February 9, 09 01:14 PM
  1. Please with all the baseball angst. Football has a MUCH worse problem with PEDs and no one cares. The media practically yawns.

    Posted by Amy February 9, 09 05:50 PM
  1. a-roid is a liar. How can you believe anything he says. I guess the yankees lead the legue in steriod users so that makes them the team of the decade!

    Posted by GERRY O'BOYLE February 9, 09 08:45 PM
  1. Who'd have guessed - Izzo would be the next shoe to drop (locally at least...we probably have to count Tejada pleading guilty as well, nationally). Too bad.

    Posted by Not the Steel Curtain too! February 17, 09 10:48 AM
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