Which one's the douche, and which one's the bag?
You really have to hand it to MLB, they couldn't have screwed up the Congressional Steroid Investigation more. Here's how things developed:
- Congress politely "invites" players to come to Washington to testify at the hearing.
- With the exception of pariah Jose Canseco, the players one by one politely "decline" the invitation, some coming up with beautifully lame excuses like "Big (always) Hurt" Frank Thomas, who said his rehab prevents him from flying, although he managed to travel to Spring Training.
- Congress not-so-politely issues subpoenas to the players, mandating they testify.
- Game over, right? In the words of Charlie Murphy, "Wrong! Wrong. We're talking about [Major League Baseball] here!" So what do they do?
- Enter douchebag extraordinaire and executive vice president, Rob Manfred, who calmly says to Bud Selig and the players, "Let me handle this, guys," and informs the United States Congress that they're not going to comply with the subpoenas.
What worse, I honestly believe the entire proceedings were thrown together by Congress, to give the players a chance to clear their name. There was absolutely no indication they were going to do anything other than lob softballs at the players, let them give smiling stock answers, and ultimately affix the often used "INCONCLUSIVE" rubber stamp to page one of their report.
Not to make the ball players jealous, but politicians are masters of tip-toeing around huge issues like this and getting nothing done. In fact, I haven't seen one interview where a representative of the investigation has said he intends to ask point-blank "Have you ever taken steroids?" As nice as that might have been for the players, you can forget it now, thanks to your arrogance and failure to comply. So if it gets ugly, guys, you only have yourself to blame.
For further thoughts on this new brand of arrogance, check out ma boy, Ray Ratto:
Baseball Needs to Talk
btw, here's Barry Bonds's new walk-up music: