Mark McGwire finally came clean, admitting he used steroids when he broke baseball’s home run record in 1998.To me, it doesn't matter. The records are tainted. His record is now tainted. His statistics mean nothing to me. I wish Mr. McGwire well, but, as a fan of the game of baseball, I can more easily go on ignoring his career and contribution to the game. The things that legitimate players did mean more to me, and they should be heralded even more so now that there's no doubt about McGwire.
McGwire said in a statement sent to The Associated Press on Monday that he used steroids on and off for nearly a decade. During a 20-minute telephone interview shortly afterward, his voice repeatedly cracked.
“It’s very emotional, it’s telling family members, friends and coaches, you know, it’s former teammates to try to get a hold of, you know, that I’m coming clean and being honest,” he said. “It’s the first time they’ve ever heard me, you know, talk about this. I hid it from everybody.”
How do you think it feels to be someone like Harmon Killebrew--a man who didn't need steroids--to regard these small, weak men and their inability to tell the truth? Killebrew sits ten home runs below McGwire and the equally reprehensible Alex Rodriguez. When is 573 more than 583? When it comes to home runs hit by a man who was NOT a walking example of fraud.
Killebrew probably has far too much class to say as much as I have. Hank Aaron? Too much class. I would really like to have heard Ted Williams and Mickey Mantle speak to this subject, I really would. Killebrew's numbers now mean more than anything McGwire has done. The stock of old hitters like him just shot through the roof.
McGwire has his lawyers to flog, however:
Big Mac’s reputation has been in tatters since March 17, 2005, when he refused to answer questions at a Congressional hearing. Instead, he repeatedly said “I’m not here to talk about the past” when asked whether he took illegal steroids when he hit a then-record 70 home runs in 1998 or at any other time.
“After all this time, I want to come clean,” he said. “I was not in a position to do that five years ago in my congressional testimony, but now I feel an obligation to discuss this and to answer questions about it. I’ll do that, and then I just want to help my team.”
McGwire said he wanted to tell the truth then but evaded questions at that hearing on the advice of his lawyers.
That's right, Mr. McGwire. It's all because of the lawyers. Everyone who has a major character deficiency should remember that doozy of a lie.
After all of this time--and being rejected, soundly, for admission in the Baseball Hall of Fame--McGwire is coming clean because he has no other options. Why isn't there talk of a lifetime ban? Why should McGwire be allowed to coach? Why are his statistics not being stricken from the baseball record? I guess that's how things are in the Bud Selig era of juiceball.