Friday, February 13, 2009


I would love it if all of the 103 names on the 2003 "anonymous" list came out. I want people to know who the cheaters are. But I got news for ya: it won't be an exciting list.

Even if it's 103 unique names (it could be 103 positive tests, with some names repeated), think about it: the average baseball career is about 5.5 years. So, chances are, more than half of those guys are out of baseball now. Let's say 50 of them still are, though I would think it would be less. No, let's say 60 to make this easier. That's two active guys per team. Which means there will most likely be some teams with one or even no current players on the list.

The only thing that anyone will care about will be the very few current superstars on the list. And that number might be zero.

But I also say if people are going to come out demanding this list be released (whether it's possible or not), they should also demand that all the players who ever took steroids should just admit it whether they tested positive or not. I guess a way to make that happen would be to have MLB say, "Okay, in one month, we release the names." That way, anyone who used 'roids would have the chance to admit it BEFORE being caught, or take a huge risk by saying nothing, and hope their tests never came up positive.

This is sort of a subtle point, but the 2003 tests were only conducted with the understanding that it was random, a survey, and anonymous. Players wouldn't have agreed to it if it were not, and if you have management renegging on as important a point as that, well that's just dishonest AND it would be a huge problem in player-mlb relations for the future. In fact, the only reason that Baseball even has a steroids policy now is because the 2003 survey, done with the promise of anonymity, showed that the number of players using substances exceeded a percentage that MLB and the players union agreed would trigger a testing program in 2004 and onward. And once you start breaking agreements about sharing privileged information, you're going down a road that has a very negative impact on expectations of privacy, and therefore honesty, from everyone you deal with.

On a note we can perhaps all agree about -- how much shady shit went down in 2003 (and the early Aught's generally) that we're only finding the whole story about years later? Basically everything about the Iraq War, general war crime stuff like torture and rendition and wiretapping, a lot of the shifty dealings that brought on the financial crisis, me going to Dartmouth... I bet that period is going to look bad in retrospect.
Well, yeah, I was just saying, if people want those names, they should want everything. A lot of people who say they want to see it are just Yankee fans who want to see OTHER teams' players come out. And I"m just saying, I don't think I could be disappointed if the whole lost came out, though the union would have every right to be like "TJ!" to the owners or whoever leaked it.

I was also gonna say something like, "people should want to see all the positive tests since then, too," but, as far as I know, we have. The only people to be tested and not be punished were--well, everybody, but only in 2003. So I guess I mean I just wanna know who the cheaters are if someone is holding that info. But baseball should punish themselves if they're gonna punish any players.

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