“I’m no Christy Mathewson.”

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No, Kenny. You are most assuredly not. But in case anyone else is confused, let’s revisit some facts:

Consecutive Postseason Scoreless Innings:
Gambler: 23
Big Six: 27

Wins, Career:
Gambler: 207
Big Six: 373

In New York I:
Gambler: Flamed out
Big Six: Dominated

Durring Wartime I:
Gambler: Punched a camerman
Big Six: Served the USA

Classic Children’s Book authored:
Gambler: NA
Big Six: Catcher Craig

Oh, yeah, and one other thing: Christy Mathewson was not A DIRTY ROTTEN CHEATER.

40 comments… add one
  • Otherwise correct, but I would question the wisdom of making the point about the children’s book. T.O. has written a children’s book too.

    Quo October 23, 2006, 10:19 am
  • I make that comment even knowing that your original post was meant to be somewhat humorous while still being quite truthful.

    Quo October 23, 2006, 10:21 am
  • I can’t believe you guys are just leaving the smudge story alone…
    It gives you reasonable justification for the dominance against the gambler…

    Brad October 23, 2006, 11:50 am
  • brad,
    as if i needed another reason to hate kenny rogers. i’m still not sure if i should make a huge deal about it, because after he washed it off, he was still dominant. but now, i’m hearing there’s video of him touching his brim and the back of the hat, which also had a brown stain all over it. and let me just say, refering to this as “kenny roger’s brown stain” makes my day.

    m.g. yanks fan October 23, 2006, 11:59 am
  • Brad: that’s what i was driving at, but i hope the little edit clears things up.

    YF October 23, 2006, 12:40 pm
  • Yeah, I realized it YF, but everyone was essentially leaving it alone, which I didn’t understand.

    Brad October 23, 2006, 1:33 pm
  • But to be fair, I can think of a couple other dirty rotten cheaters who’ve been caught and you aren’t so angry about, no?

    Brad October 23, 2006, 1:35 pm
  • …cheaters, brad?…who are these people you refer to?…aren’t cheaters supposed to be punished, suspended, and banned from participating further?…i haven’t heard of anyone suffering that fate in a very long time…

    dc October 23, 2006, 11:24 pm
  • DC, sometimes you’re too much. You know exactly whom I’m talking about, but I’ll let you have this one if it makes you feel better about it.

    Brad October 24, 2006, 10:17 am
  • Something tells me if it were Red Sox players involved in BALCO, whose named turned up in grand jury transcripts, and who issued bizarre non-specific apologies, dc wouldn’t be so generous with his parsing of their legal situation.
    For the record, neither would I. Cheating is cheating.

    Paul SF October 24, 2006, 10:36 am
  • agreed.

    Brad October 24, 2006, 10:44 am
  • …are you referring to shilling’s bizarre amnesia defense?…
    …let me put this into terms that even you sox fans can understand…if you have hard evidence that proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that someone has committed an illegal act [for example, shilling’s alleged perjury], it’s your duty to turn it over so that baseball and the legal system can do its due diligence and punish the scoundrels…until then, these are accusations only…in some cases “guilt by association”…declaring someone guilty without due process is un-american…

    dc October 24, 2006, 12:16 pm
  • …my prior post was partly facetious of course, to make a point that you can’t just point fingers at people without proof…guys, all i’m trying to say is that all of the participants from the capital hill hearings [giambi, shilling, et al], and others for that matter [like those supposedly linked to grimsley] and sheffield are presumed innocent until the entire investigations are completed, and all the facts known…anything else is unfair and off-base…only those who have been caught “red-handed” should be up for such harsh criticism at this point…

    dc October 24, 2006, 12:43 pm
  • …correction, giambi didn’t go to capital hill…he was exempt because of his prior testimony…

    dc October 24, 2006, 1:44 pm
  • DC –
    If you think that Giambi is innocent of taking steroids in Oakland and NY, then you are completely alone on that support bus. Even the most die-hard Yankee fan know that the guy was saying sorry for messing up, without really admitting that he messed up. In fact, I do forgive him for being the only man in the bunch. But, saying he’s presumed innoncent until he’s “caught red handed” is insane, brother. <--- cheap Hogan closing sentence.

    Brad October 24, 2006, 2:05 pm
  • I am not happy Lawton or Heredia were yankees.

    Seth October 24, 2006, 2:28 pm
  • But you are Giambi and Sheffield are? What’s the difference, really? One was caught out-right and the others admitted to not admitting to anything but was still sorry for what he “did” and the other said he didn’t know he was using it?
    I don’t see the difference, Seth.

    Brad October 24, 2006, 2:38 pm
  • brad, i’m just saying that it hasn’t been proven by baseball or in court that any baseball rules or criminal laws have been broken by any of the accused participants…if so, then someone needs to explain why punitive action hasn’t been taken against those people…

    dc October 24, 2006, 2:42 pm
  • Okay, you’re right, DC. They’re both innocent and have never done anything illegal. Even though one said he didn’t know and the other said sorry for taking something he couldn’t name because of contract issues with the Yankees.
    Again, I guess we just agree to not agree.

    Brad October 24, 2006, 2:49 pm
  • HGH is a prescription-only drug. If Giambi can produce the piece of paper from his doctor that he had a legitimate prescription for it then he’s clear, as far as I am concerned. Otherwise, if he took HGH (and it’s widely speculated that he did) he committed a CRIME. The courts have little to do with this, dc. Of course they cannot convict him now. Giambi, I think all of us believe, took drugs that were illegal to possess without the proper paperwork.

    SF October 24, 2006, 3:34 pm
  • …and if that’s true, baseball should come down hard on him…what are they waiting for?…

    dc October 24, 2006, 3:50 pm
  • The difference is certain people were caught by the league breaking rules that everyone had to follow. Brad, the names you mentioned were ‘convicted’ in a extremely limited scope trial. Schilling said he figured 50% of players use steroids (and the other 50% have considered it). Its nice of you to point to Giambi and Sheff, or the other 5 or 10 names who were mentioned in a very specific trail. I wish your investigative journalism lead to the hundreds of other players who were using too. Under fair testing Giambi and Sheff have been as clean as anyone else.

    Seth October 24, 2006, 4:30 pm
  • Seth,
    The difference between Sheff and Giambi, along with a few select other players, they have been in public spotlight over the whole issue. They’re the well knowns to all of us here. I’m not saying they are any worse or better than all the others, but rather just better known. I don’t look at Giambi any differently than I look at Palmeiro. They’ve both cheated the game, and should be punished. Like I said, Giambi gets my second chance award for at least attempting to own up to his mistakes, but that makes the charge no less meaninful for him. Because the conviction comes in a limited scoped trial, as you say, makes it no less or more meaninful or truthful. They cheated, were closely associated with Balco and in one way or another have tried to say sorry for breaking the rules and the law.
    Being honest with you, if a Sox player were to come forward or fail a test, I’d hold the same feelings for that person – I wouldn’t try to defend them in any way the way it seems you guys are doing here with Giambi and Sheff. No matter the player, even Ortiz, if it came out, I’d hold him in the same light as I do the rest, and I would immediatedly stop recognizing 2004.
    But, maybe there’s a difference between myself and Yankee fans: I certainly would not stand and cheer for him once he started hitting the ball again – ever.

    Brad October 24, 2006, 4:43 pm
  • “Under fair testing Giambi and Sheff have been as clean as anyone else.”
    So yfs are using the Barry Bonds defense? The extremely limited testing in place by MLB shows the players are clean; therefore, they are clean. I’m all about innocent until proven guilty, but this isn’t the courts, it’s baseball. The banned Black Sox were all acquitted in the courts, in case anyone’s forgotten.

    Paul SF October 24, 2006, 5:06 pm
  • the “under current testing” argument is a weak one. we all know “current testing” doesn’t test for the drugs that giambi and sheff prefer. i think it’s hard to over look the fact that sheff is both a cheater and a liar. if the sox where to sign gary i would find it hard to root for my team.

    sf rod October 24, 2006, 5:55 pm
  • dc:
    Baseball is not a law enforcement agency. It is entirely possible for a player to commit a crime and still be eligible to play baseball. Baseball, unfortunately, cannot do anything about past transgressions not caught by law enforcement. Unless, of course, they were able to negotiate such powers with the Player’s Association. And that is as likely as David Eckstein making a throw from deep short and not looking like a girl while doing it.
    (sorry, cheap shot there. apologies in advance)
    Morals clauses in contracts also apparently make no difference, as far as I can tell.

    SF October 24, 2006, 6:17 pm
  • …i understand…but separate from whether or not the allegations have criminal implications, my question really is, if there is sufficient evidence that a baseball rule has been violated, why aren’t the perpetrators being dealt with by the sport?…if the evidence is insufficient, or is ultimately found not to violate baseball’s rules, then it’s unfair to call them cheaters…

    dc October 24, 2006, 6:56 pm
  • Use of steroids has been prohibited in baseball since around 1990. There was no testing structure or punishment scheme in place, but it was part of the language of the CBA, so using these drugs is indeed in violation of baseball’s rules. The question is whether or not they did it.
    I see your point, dc, that we SHOULDN’T call people cheaters if they haven’t been convicted or otherwise found guilty in some formal manner. Do you say the same thing in defense of Michael Jackson, O.J. Simpson, Kenneth Lay? These men all were either acquitted or had convictions vacated, meaning they essentially have never been found guilty by a formal process. (OJ was found liable in the deaths but not guilty). The fact is public opinion forms long before juries make their decisions. Is this unfair? Yes. But name a player you would be willing to say has been unfairly tarnished by substantive accusations of steroid use. McGwire? Sosa? Palmeiro? Giambi? Sheffield? Bonds? Fairly or not, the burden of proof in the eyes of the public has shifted to them, and they have continually genuflected, denied, apologized or pleaded ignorance. Palmeiro, the only one with a positive test, ironically is the only one to have steadfastly denied using steroids.
    In the absence of evidence to the contrary, the court of public opinion has found these men guilty — and they have done NOTHING to try to counteract that. That’s more telling than anything else.

    Paul SF October 24, 2006, 7:10 pm
  • I don’t know where ethics figure into the institution of baseball, but it’s far from high on the list. The decisions baseball as a whole makes regarding it’s rules and standards of conduct are concerned with the fiscal impact it has on the owners and not much else. I don’t think ethics are a consideration unless it is of direct benefit to the owner’s bottom line.
    Owners cheat players and each other. Owners cheat fans (witness certain tax benefit teams). Players cheat for direct personal benefit that may or may not benefit the team. Baseball breaks federal laws that govern other businesses with the blessing of the court. The owners were found guilty of collusion, but no one did time. I understand that laws do not equate to a defining of right from wrong. How any of these morally ambiguous events and decisions affects an individual owner, player, or fan’s personal sense of right and wrong will never matter to “baseball” unless it results in a sea change of spending decisions by the fan base, and by definition the results of that action will always be fiscally motivated. As a result, I try to keep my indignation within the perspective of the fact that “the right thing to do” will get shafted if someone can get away with making a buck. It doesn’t make me feel better about it, but I don’t feel worse for over-thinking that “someone got away with something.”
    I do hope baseball can get the juicing out of the sport purely from the health perspective. Unfortunately, that problem is societal, and there are way too many chemists that don’t care about ethics either. Baseball would do well by me to lead on this issue, not that it cares what I think.

    attackgerbil October 24, 2006, 7:40 pm
  • …good argument paul…and i should leave it there…but invoking the names of guys who were accused of perpetrating very serious crimes, that hurt innocent people, to make your point may not be the best comparison, but i do get your point anyway…but even those guys had their day in court: in jackson’s case, i think he settled, then moved out of the country, oj was found liable in the civil suit based on a “preponderance of the evidence”, i think is the legal term, and ken lay, who died before any legal process could proceed would have at least been deemed to be negligent for not knowing what a ceo should know about the financial health of his company…as for the ballplayers, if there is evidence it will come out…in the meantime, i’ll respect your right to call anyone a cheater if there’s even a whiff of suspicion, and i’ll expect you not to protest if the shoe is ever on the other foot…thank god for due process, and the court of public opinion is only allowed to make judgements and not hand out punishment…

    dc October 24, 2006, 7:52 pm
  • I for one like to reserve judgment until there’s some sort of genuine suspicion, as opposed to just a whiff (the Grimsley afidavit and its “naming” of Clemens, Pettite et al. would qualify as a whiff, I think, considering the denials and retractions from others involved in the case that came afterward). There is far more than just a whiff of suspicion surrounding Sheffield and Giambi — Sheffield told a grand jury that he used steroids but didn’t know that’s what they were (highly dubious), and Giambi after being named in a grand jury transcript issued an apology for unspecified actions that are unlikely to be anything but the steroid use for which he was named in the grand jury transcript. That is far more than just a whiff — in fact, it’s more than we have against McGwire and Sosa, whom everyone seems perfectly fine in relegating to history’s blacklist.
    Anyway, I think we are in agreement, dc. By legal definition, Giambi and Sheffield are still merely alleged cheaters. But law and reality often do not converge until much later down the road, and we’re not in a coutroom here.

    Paul SF October 24, 2006, 11:53 pm
  • …paul, good point about there being levels of suspicion, although i think there has been more about mcgwire [andro] than you noted…
    …if i remember right, giambi’s apology was because he felt his involvement in the grand jury investigation was becoming a distraction for him and the team…
    …i heard that sheffield admitting using the cream stuff but claimed he didn’t realize it contained a certain substance…i don’t necessarily buy the argument that these athletes can be on top of the chemical composition of everything they ingest…they’re not chemists…last year sheffield got cortisone shots for his aching shoulder…cortisone is [you guessed it], a steriod…some nasal sprays contain a steroid, and on and on…
    …but i’m not suggesting any cheater get off the hook, ignorance is no defense…it’s about educating them and policing the game properly…maybe you’re right, more vigorous denials by giambi and sheffield, or any explicit denial for that matter, would put them both in a better light, like the other players [or not]…
    …until the truth comes out [i hope], eventually, like it will with all the players you mentioned, we just won’t know who did what for sure…
    …if i’m right about what sheffield said, but the substance in the cream is a banned substance, baseball should deal with it, i don’t understand the lack of action…on the other hand, if it’s not a rules violation, then folks should get off his back…i don’t even need to point out what a silly stretch it is to believe that rubbing cream on yourself might make you a better baseball player…maybe nothing’s happening because it seems silly to baseball’s rules enforcers too…it’s frustrating to me because it seems so clear…the guy broke a rule or he didn’t…deal with it and move on…
    …i guess we do now agree on some of it anyway, and if baseball doesn’t take action against anyone they’ve found or will find guilty of violating baseball’s rules, it will be sad indeed…

    dc October 25, 2006, 10:13 am
  • dc:
    Giambi apologized for nothing specific, not the Grand Jury stuff. See this article:
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2005/02/11/MNGBCB9K7B1.DTL
    As for Sheffield, if you read the SI expose of BALCO, it’s clear that there was a very serious regimen involved while taking their “balms”. It is inconceivable to me, after reading that article, that players involved with them didn’t know what they were doing. See this thread (http://yanksfansoxfan.typepad.com/ysfs/2006/03/they_knew.html) for more on the “I didn’t know what I was taking” line. It’s utter BS.

    SF October 25, 2006, 11:44 am
  • sf, you still haven’t told me why baseball hasn’t punished him…

    dc October 25, 2006, 3:34 pm
  • It is widley stated and accepted that around 50% of mlb players were using steroids. If it was only the handful of players that keep getting named in this post there would have been a much smaller problem. The problem was not because a few players were cheating. It was that so many players were cheating. And all star players make better media fodder and book sales.

    Seth October 25, 2006, 3:49 pm
  • They can’t. Because they are too weak. The PA would file a grievance faster than you can even imagine, and they’d probably win based on how strong their contract with ownership is, and how vague morals clauses are. Baseball hasn’t punished him because it’s not worth the time. Also, once they started this pursuit of players they wouldn’t know where to stop. I don’t think that’s in their interest.

    SF October 25, 2006, 3:55 pm
  • “It is widley stated and accepted that around 50% of mlb players were using steroids.”
    I ask this in all earnestness because I don’t know the answer, but where is it widely stated and ACCEPTED that around 50% of players used steroids. I’ve heard estimates ranging from 5% to 90%. Who are you quoting, and why do you accept his/her numbers?

    Nick-YF October 25, 2006, 4:10 pm
  • The 50% number was used by Caminiti for the sports illustrated article in 2002. This is the main article quoted and used in hearings and grand jury testimony that has taken place on the matter. This number is also constantly used in main stream media, which makes it widely stated. Washington Post (schilling also guesses 50%, does that qualify as accepted?) and nytimes, as well as many other papers use the 50% number will little to no qualifiers.
    When MLB tested anonymously more than 5% tested positive. I think this occured in 2004.

    Seth October 25, 2006, 4:43 pm
  • Particularly considering the breadth of talent and fame caught in the steroid tests since baseball instituted its testing-and-punishment structure, I think the 50 percent number gains credibility. It’s not just the 10 percent of those who need to be at the top, it’s those barely getting by, those with slightly above-average skills, etc. It seems to be a pretty large cross-section of players, sadly.

    Paul SF October 25, 2006, 6:14 pm
  • …if the 50% estimate is so “widely stated and accepted”, including by curt shilling, explain why shilling, widely considered the pillar of integrity on the topic, testified at the congressional hearings that he had not witnessed any abuse in 19 major league seasons…he guesses it’s 50% but he’s never actually seen it?…that makes as much sense as if i said, i’ve never seen a ballplayer using anything, therefore, they don’t…and, to get back to my point once again: if baseball’s not going to punish the offenders who do get caught, for any of the reasons you all have mentioned, then why is it even an issue?…

    dc October 25, 2006, 10:19 pm

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