Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Some Perspective

As more and more steroid-connected names leak out in the run-up to the Mitchell Report, sportswriters' anti-PED rhetoric is likely going to ramp up back to where it was last summer when Bonds was chasing Aaron. It's the offseason. There's not that much to write about. It's just going to happen, so we should try not to get too worked up about the writers' inevitable hyperbole.

But we should be highly skeptical of one component of that hyperbole, and that's the line of reasoning that will go "the fact that player X is in the steroid conversation is really causing trouble for him in the free agent market."

I simply don't buy that, mostly because of quotes like this one from Royals GM Dayton Moore:

"Unfortunately, there was a period of time in baseball that we all know now that circumstances like this were occurring,” Moore said. “I think you’ve got to put it into perspective to that particular period of time even if it is a negative mark on the game.”

For what it's worth, I don't know how anyone can approach the issue in a way other than the way Moore says it right there unless they are simply interested in being alarmist. It's a fact. It's not one that we can wish away, nor is it one that excuses anyone from doing their job.

More to the point, if there is one GM thinking like that there are certainly others, and if there are several GMs thinking like that, those who may have once been inclined to tread lightly with respect to PED-connected players will swallow their pride in the interests of competition, meaning that the Jose Guillens of the world will get signed despite all of the sound and fury that comes from our nations' newsrooms.

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