Monday, January 07, 2008

What is the method by which a Rocket blasts off?

The answer is a controlled explosion, if you buy that kind of oxymoron.  I've kept silent on baseball's Mitchell Report.  That tome that has made us aware of some evidence, some of it strong and some of it amazingly weak, that told us some athletes in the game of baseball used performance enhancing drugs to improve their careers, increase their paydays and perhaps shatter records.

Some former Red Sox were named in the report most note worthy were Mo Vaugh, Paxton Crawford and Roger Clemens.

It is the evidence presented surrounding Roger Clemens that I find weak and bordering on absurd.  I don't think it holds up.  Yet, I must ask myself is this my mind informing me based on what I have read or is it my heart.  The heart of my childhood wanting to believe that one of my childhood heros who kind of continued as one into adulthood cheated.   

Baseball players have always captured our imagination.  Being paid large amounts of money to play a game loved by kids everywhere.   In many cases making more than the President, but as Babe Ruth once said "I had a better a year than him."

I don't think the evidence offered against Clemens is reliable as of now.  Could that change?  Sure it could become worse or it could be blown up and the Rocket could clear his name.  Innocent until PROVEN guilty.  Besides, I caught a quote from The Rocket that makes me hope that one of the games toughest players of his generation is going to the mattresses to save his reputation and he doesn't give a damn what the press has to say about it:

"Do you think I played my career because I'm worried about the damn Hall of Fame?" he told a room filled with many potential voters. "You keep your vote. I don't need the Hall of Fame to justify that I put my butt on the line and I worked my tail off, and I defy anybody to say I did it by cheating or taking any shortcuts, OK?"

That's the competitor and the attitude I loved as a kid and still love today.  Many times in life our heros let us down.  They are afterall only human, only flesh and bone like ourselves.  And maybe if anything, that's the lesson we all need to take away from this whole mess.

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