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A/B; B/A; ERA; I/P; OBP; W/L…AND NOW…PEDS

My morning’s activities were canceled, leaving me with some time to peruse the paper a bit longer. That holds the possibility for being a good thing but in this instance, well, you’ll see. And, as tomorrow is FEEL-GOOD FRIDAY and this ain’t, well, again, you’ll see. I call this:

A/B; B/A; ERA; I/P; OBP; W/L…AND NOW…PEDS

Got Juice?

Got Juice?

 

Before reading further, please consult these two links:

 

http://www.superpages.com/supertips/felony-possession.html

 

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/20556159-419/morrissey-is-anyone-in-baseball-clean.html

 

The former is a definition of what possession of a controlled substance is considered and its penalties under the law. I present this as I am so sick and effin’-tired of the sports-media bozos who say, “Well, they didn’t do anything illegal”. Well, uh, yeah, they effin’ DID! And, no, I do not include Rick Morrissey, the column’s author, in this group.

 

As the title implies, we baseball fans feast on stats. Here’s a couple explanations for those who aren’t as well versed as others.

1.) Batting Average. A hitter’s hits divided by the number of his at-bats equals his batting average. As kids, that’s how many a young boy took any kind of interest in arithmetic. For example,200 hits divided by 600 at-bats = .333 batting average. No, that doesn’t happen very often…the 200 hits.

2.) Earned Run Average, or, ERA. A pitcher’s earned run average, is calculated by dividing the number of earned runs he has allowed by the # of innings he’s pitched x 9. Let’s use that ridiculous, semi-new stat, the “Quality Start”. A Quality Start is determined as a starting pitcher going 6-innings and allowing 3-runs.

OK, let’s do this math: 3-runs divided by 6-innings-pitched = 0.5 x 9 = 4.5. What’s so “quality” about a starting pitcher who, on any given day, forces his offense to score, at least 4-runs in 6-innings, or if he goes 9-innings, 5-runs?

 

OK, I diverged and for that, I apologize, as this is about baseball’s most annoying acronym, PEDs, which stands for Performance Enhancing Drugs.

 

Here’s my problem. I’m a baseball fan…an MLB fan, NL-fan,  to be sure. I’ve watched this game and played it as a kid for most of my – near – 65-years. I LOVE baseball. I have always felt…and always will…think it’s the best game we have. Yes, I enjoy the NFL, no doubt. But there’s something about baseball that, well, I don’t know, is simply mesmerizing.

 

So, here we have another PED controversy. It seems PEDs have been the scourge of MLB the past 20-odd years. And, I’m as guilty as anyone else with their continued usage. When Sammy Sosa was thwacking those monstrous homers…60 or more in three successive years…I cheered. I didn’t pay any heed nor did I care that as his physique had swollen, Incredible Hulk-like from “working out” nor that his head was also the size of a pumpkin at harvest-time. It wasn’t till he stopped and became Sammy So-so, that it dawned on me.  So, yeah. Mea culpa. Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa.

 

It wasn’t till after that, when I had my epiphany. But as I look back at it, in retrospect, was it the cheating or the condescending, smug, arrogance of he, McGuire, Palmeiro or Clemens and now Ryan Braun or my being an MLB-lemming, led to the edge of the cliff by my naivete? Here’s the mea culpa of it, again. I’m going to a ballgame, Tuesday, with my buddy, NesterTom. The tickets were purchased, so aren’t we tangentially, supporting this scheiss? It would seem so, no? I’m still pissed at them, though.

 

What really torques my shorts is Braun’s BS. He only got off due to a technicality on the “chain of possession”, which after the stoopid arbitrator’s ruling, was found to have been exactly what was supposed to have been done with his “sample” as Cow Town, Milwaukee didn’t have a FedEx office open after 10:00PM on a Friday. Again, this was not a declaration of innocence but to hear Braun, oh yes it was! His response to the latest charges? If you read Morrissey’s column, Braun says, “The truth has not changed”.

The fact that these guys are still doing this with all the scrutinizing being done by MLB, the media and law-enforcement, you’d think they’d have learned. Uh-huh. Only this time, it seems the truth, the whole truth and tut-tut-nuthin’ but the whole truth will out and when it does, Braun and the others will swing for it.

 

Unfortunately, that brings up another problem…punishment. These clowns are multi-multi-millionaires. A 100-game suspension

won’t materially hurt them financially. I agree with Morrissey that it should be for “seasons”. Take away what they live for, baseball and its concomitant fan-adulation, and see what happens. Take 2 or 3-years away from the Cheatin’CheeseHead and his friends and see how arrogant they are. A-Rod? He’s become a joke and on his way to being a billionaire by now, so whatever happens to him would be symbolic, at best. We don’t really know what MLB has…or has not…on them. It would seem if they allowed this leak and have not made any protestations to the contrary, they have enough. Yes, the source is a slime-ball but if that slime-ball has records in the form of emails; delivery receipts; credit card info; checking accounts; cell phone records, etc., these guys are in Star Trek Deep Scheiss-Nine.

 

Morrissey also mentions “the vast majority of the 20 on the list is Latin”, stating that they come from poverty and, “…will do whatever they can to succeed and help their families”, concluding if the punishment takes away that ability to provide for them, ”…they might think twice about using PEDs.” Speaking of Latin ballplayers, he mentions Big Papi, David Ortiz and his early-season renaissance and its questionable source. I don’t know if that would only apply to Latin ballpayers. No doubt, getting out of the Dominican, for example,  isn’t the same as living in the U.S.A. Still, taking away the opportunity to play would seem to be a more effective punishment for anyone from any place.

 

Last evening, I watched a sports show on which they said ballplayers had said to the writers that the guys to watch weren’t just the big 1st-basemen but the diminutive 2nd-sackers AND pitchers. That led to the talk of the asterisk being used for batting records during the ‘Roid-era and if the pitchers were using them, why should the hitters, only, be punished? A valid point, I guess.

It still sucks as it’s dishonest.

 

All of this being said, we come to kids. We emulated what we saw MLBers do when we were kids. What makes anyone think kids don’t, won’t or haven’t tried ‘roiding? Here’s he thing. If they only had a positive effect on users’ performance, that’d be fine. But then, they may not be considered as controlled substances, right? Why would there be a ban/control on something that only does good? There probably wouldn’t be. As they get older, they will be left with serious consequences to their health in the form of heart and/or liver disease, among other ailments. To that, don’t we need to ask ourselves if hitting or throwing a baseball better than others is worth it if the trade-off is an early-death or a life of serious health issues? That’s the real issue.

 

It is my sincere hope that MLB has conclusive proof which allows it, as the sport’s governing body to impose sanctions and the teams to void the contracts as well. Of course, that opens another can of worms as the teams benefit/benefitted from the fruit of those ‘roided trees, too, now, don’t/didn’t they?

 

Have  great day!

 

FatRats

 

 


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