Sports Goggles

Posts Tagged ‘Tony LaRussa

“Playing Ball” Major League Baseball’s Way

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jackiesjersey.jpgWith all that was going on last summer it was difficult to deal with some of the larger issues of and problems with Major League Baseball. This spring and summer it is time to make time to dig in an explore MLB and baseball, in general, much more deeply. The following is the first of many articles and commentaries to be written this spring and summer on our National Pastime.

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I smelled a rat in Major League Baseball’s summer of 2007 but could not find its carcass. There was something terribly wrong with MLB and baseball, in general. Everywhere I turned there was a scandal. Most had to do with “performance-enhancing drugs” (PEDs) like steroids and human growth hormone (HGH), but there were others like Tony LaRussa’s drunk driving charge and the specter of Ken Caminiti’s cocaine-induced death and his flat statement that perhaps 80% of MLB players were using PEDs. There was a rebirth of public knowledge of baseball’s private war with amphetamines used largely to recuperate from long hours of air travel followed by playing a baseball game some 12 hours later. But amphetamines are dangerous drugs and I wondered how many MLB players had a bottle of them at home.

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Steroids Rules: Revisionist History, Revising the Present as It Passes and Revising the Future Before It Comes

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larussa.jpgFirst, let’s cut the bullshit talk out. All the, “Roid rage, his head grew, he’s so much bigger than last year,” etc etc. etc. ad nauseum, has to cease. Now.

All anyone is doing by parroting that talk is attempting to bullshit you, me, and anyone else who might be listening or watching. So, when you hear that come from someone’s mouth and they are alleged to be an insider or an expert – turn off to them. Stop listening because they are, at least – and I’m being ultra kind here, uninformed.

Sunday, on ESPN’s Outside the Lines show, Bob Ley narrated and moderated a solid segment on the history of the culture of steroids in Major League Baseball. The enigmatic former Cincinnati Reds and Florida marlins trainer, Larry Starr was interviewed. As he had in previous interviews for newspapers, Starr told of his experiences in trying to bring steroid abuse problems to the attention of MLB executives during the 1989 MLB Winter Meetings. He also talked of a player who gained 30 pounds of muscle in one winter – from 165 pounds to 195 pounds – and feeling at that moment that baseball had a “problem” with steroids.

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