Baseball fans have become cynical in the light of their childhood stars. Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Roger Clemens and now A-Rod have all been tainted by the ongoing steroids scandal that seems to prove the entire game is a sham.
It was former Yankees Manager Joe Torre who gave A-Rod the “A-Fraud” moniker in his new book — the outrage over Joe’s betrayal was quickly buried this week with the revelation that “A-Hole” had been bouncing the needle in Texas:
Alex Rodriguez acknowledged Monday that he used performance-enhancing drugs while playing for the Texas Rangers from 2001 to 2003, a confession that casts doubt on the achievements of the player widely considered to be the best in baseball.
The admission also makes Rodriguez, who joined the Yankees in 2004 and has 553 career home runs, the most prominent baseball player to admit that he has knowingly used illegal substances. Three other equally famous players — Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Mark McGwire — are widely suspected of having used performance enhancers, and have become infamous for their denials. Rodriguez took the blame in a lengthy interview on ESPN.
Will A-Rod be able to overcome this drowning of his place in history?
Will the New York fans accept him now even though they never accepted him before his confession?
The fact that A-Rod may have had help from the Major League Baseball Players Union does not help buff his tarnished image:
Nearly five years after federal agents seized positive drug tests of 104 players, including Alex Rodriguez, the players union offered its first full explanation of why it did not have the tests destroyed, as it had the right to do.
In a statement released Monday night, Donald Fehr, the executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, said that the union was in the process of destroying the tests when they were subpoenaed by federal authorities in November 2003.
“Upon learning this,” Fehr said, referring to the subpoenas, “we concluded, of course, that it would be improper to proceed with the destruction of the materials.”
Fehr also said that the union’s chief operating officer, Gene Orza, and other union officials did not tip off players about when they would be tested in 2004. Before the union issued its statement Monday night, Orza said in an
e-mail message that he did not tip off Rodriguez about a drug test in
2004. Orza also disputed the notion that it was his responsibility to
have the drug tests from 2003 destroyed.
On Saturday, a report on Sports Illustrated’s Web site, citing
anonymous sources, said that Rodriguez tested positive for steroids in
2003. The report also said that Rodriguez received notice from Orza in
September 2004 that he would be tested in several weeks.
Alex Rodriguez has a lot of career left — but does he have any baseball left inside him?
Only time and tests will tell the tale of the if and when A-Hole is able to become A-Rod again.