December 14, 2007

Steroids!?!? What Steroids!?!?

It's time to weigh in, my friends. Here's what's on the dish, and it's baseball heavy: the Mitchell Report, Greg Zaun, Alex Rios, Josh Towers, David Eckstein, T.J. Ford and our dinosaurs of the hard court the Toronto Raptors, and Bates Battaglia. And maybe some more. You'll have to read on to find out!

The Mitchell Report (cue dramatic music):

So, uh, baseball's got a steroids problem. Who's surprised? Who cares? This isn't news. Every one's known for quite some time that all baseball players are, or have been, on the juice. A most credible source - one Jose Canseco - told all of us years ago.

So why all this fuss over the Mitchell report? Leave it to baseball to let a director of the Boston Red Sox lead an investigation into drug use in the sport. In an absolutely shocking turn of events, no Red Sox were named on the list.

If you haven't seen it already, here's the report. It was actually a rather enjoyable experience to skim through it. If you're looking for a list of names, here you go.

Long story short - baseball players have been juicing for years and the Mitchell report named some names.

A few big names did come out of the report. Barry Bonds took steroids?!?! Like, no way! On a more serious note, the real big names were: Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Eric Gagne and Miguel Tejada. And Toronto's own Greg Zaun! Give it up for Zauner!

Clemens, it was reported, took his first injections, in the buttocks no less, in our great city of Toronto, while he was dominating the American League for none other than the Toronto Blue Jays. I feel, kind of, honored. I always thought Clemens was some sort of freak of nature who could pitch, pitch and pitch some more. But now it's come to light that he's a steroid-using douche bag. Oh well, his couple of years in Toronto were still great, although he does deserve a swift kick to the nuts.

As for Gagne, Pettitte, and Tejada, I can't really say I'm surprised. If you were surprised by the Mitchell report, you've been living under a rock. Baseball's been juicing for a long, long time. Deal with it.

Greg Zaun:

Clemens as a Blue Jay wasn't the only connection from the Mitchell report to my, our should I say our, beloved Toronto Blue Jays. Like I said, it looks like good ol' Greg Zaun is a steroid user and abuser. I have, after a few hours reflection, already forgiven him. Like I said, everyone was juicing. Zaun's been a borderline major leaguer for, pretty much, ever. If I was Zaun and I saw the dude I was battling against for a job taking steroids, I probably would have done the same. Can't blame the guy.

I do, however, have some advice for Zaun, and a number of other idiots who were named in the Mitchell report thanks to evidence that they paid for their steroids by cheque. If you're going to buy the stuff, pay with cash, morons. That's all.

Zaun even had the nerve to trash the Mitchell report to the National Post before it got released yesterday. Not smart, Zauner, not smart. Especially when you're in it! Oh well, you live and you learn. Zaun, a recovering alcoholic, probably needed a drink last night. I wonder what he'll say today?

Troy Glaus:

Still on the Jays and steroids, super douche Troy Glaus was named in the report as well. Not a surprise, as he was linked to steroids at the end of last season. Major League Baseball has, however, cleared him of any wrong doing because there apparently isn't enough evidence that Glaus used steroids. He just bought them, that's all, and what? Did he sit on his couch and stare at them? Talk about getting off easy, eh? Give me a break. The Glaus story is exactly what is wrong with Major League Baseball. Now Glaus will never have to explain his steroid controversy, and that just pisses me right off. I'm still off Glaus, huge...

Alex Rios and Tim Lincecum:

Enough about steroids. The San Francisco Giants yesterday signed Aaron Rowand to a five-year deal. The free-agent signing took Tim Lincecum off the table, and that means Alex Rios is going to remain a Blue Jay, at least for the time being. At the end of the day, the Giants couldn't part with Lincecum's arm, and I can't really blame them. The kid's going to be special. At the same time, I can't be mad or disappointed, because Alex Rios is a rude boy and still a Blue Jay. I think the Jays should now make a whole-hearted effort to get Rios' name on a contract extension before they explore trading him again.

Here's hoping that Rios doesn't take the attempt to trade him personally. It was strictly a business decision, especially in light of the "cha-ching" Rios will soon be hearing. The smart money (that would be me) says that Rios does end up taking it personally. However, I'm not all that smart, nor do I have much money, so what the hell do I know...

Josh Towers:

Jeff Blair at The Globe, and millions of other Jays fans, were given an early Festivus present by JPeezy last night. Josh Towers was not tendered a contract. He is officially a free agent. His career with the Blue Jays is officially done. Finally. No more Josh Towers. Say it with me. It feels so good. Yes, that is dancing in the streets you're hearing.

Towers was god-awful the last two years. I know it, you know it, and even he knows it. I would quote Towers and his reaction to becoming a free agent but, really, who gives a shit what he has to say? He made more than $5 million the last two seasons. I feel like he stole the money, because god knows he didn't deserve it.

I will give some credit, though, to Josh Towers. He's a millionaire. And he stinks. Therefore he's the reason my unborn son will become a major league pitcher. So thanks, Josh, for something, at least.

David Eckstein:

Still on the Jays, they announced the free-agent signing of David Eckstein yesterday afternoon. Welcome to Toronto, Mr. X Factor. It's a one-year deal for $4.5 million and Eckstein will, at that price, surely be the starting shortstop come April.

I definitely didn't see this one coming, especially after JPeezy went out and acquired Marco Scutaro to backup John McDonald. I feel for Johnny Mac. It seemed like he finally had the starting job locked up, and now this. He's a backup once again. At the same time, I can't be mad at JPeezy for going out and signing Eckstein, who will be batting in the lead-off spot (making Reed Johnson expendable?). Worst comes to worst, the Jays have another decent guy on their bench, either Johnny Mac or Eckstein. If there was one glaring weakness for the Jays last year it was their abysmal bench. Now it's much better, and supreme jobbers like Howie Clarke, Hector Luna and Ray Olmedo can go back to the minors where they belong...

T.J. Ford:

My man T.J. Ford is doing alright after he was mugged by Al Horford in Atlanta on Tuesday night. The Raptors came up big a night later, with T.J. in attendance in street clothes on the bench, against the Dallas Mavericks.

I got a bunch of feedback about my comments about the Ford incident and how I thought one of Ford's teammates should have stepped up and had a word with Horford. Some people disagreed because Horford was quick to show remorse, while others said that someone should have at least had a word with the Atlanta rook.

Horford was definitely remorseful after his bonehead play on Ford. He went to the hospital after the game on Tuesday night to talk to Ford and to make sure he was alright. The Atlanta rookie spent more than two hours at the hospital. Good on him, because it was the right thing to do.

I, however, stand by my decision. I appreciate Horford going to the hospital, but I made it clear that I knew Horford didn't mean to hurt T.J. Ford. Of course he didn't. But that doesn't change the fact that someone has got to get in his face and at least ask him what the hell he was thinking. There's a way to foul a guy, and it certainly doesn't involve smacking wildly at a guy's head. Again, I know it was an accident, but still. Maybe it's the hockey attitude in me, I don't know, but regardless of the intentions, Horford needed a word. Just a word. Not a punch, or a fight, or a shove. Just a word.

As for Ford, it looks like he's going to miss at least a week of action, if not more. He flew back to Toronto Wednesday morning, after his charter plane made a pit stop in Baltimore. Why Baltimore, you ask? To pick up injured Raptor Jorge Garbajosa, who had surgery on his ankle and leg. Gotta love the service, eh? Only for a Toronto team suffering from the Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment injury plague does a plane go around picking up injured guys across North America. Unbelievable. Get well soon, boys...

Bates Battaglia:

To some hockey news. My man Bates Battaglia has been waived by the Toronto Maple Leafs and will now report to the Toronto Marlies. Battaglia has watched most of the season from the press box and when he has played, his ice time has averaged less than five minutes a game. It sucks, because I like Battaglia and what he brought to the Leafs last year. He was productive, with over 30 points, and he played around 10 to 12 minutes a game.

This year, he's been a casualty to the Leafs depth and it's unfortunate because he finally seemed to be getting his career back on track. The Leafs should try and trade him because Battaglia is not an AHL hockey player. He can play in the NHL, there's no doubt about it. It's a shame he loses a roster spot to someone like Wade Belak, who scores one goal every four years, and is the toast of Toronto.

Here's hoping Bates lands back on his feet.

Peace out, Toronto.


Forty said...

You left Toronto Blue Jay Howie Clark off the list of names.