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Mitchell Report: the Fallout

Roger Clemens used steroidsI’ve had a bit of time now to look over news of the Mitchell Report (I haven’t read it yet…pretty sure I won’t get to that any time soon). A few thoughts:

First, I’m glad this thing is finally out. It’s about damn time.

Second, I’m not surprised by any of it. I think we all more or less knew that Roger Clemens was juicing. Andy Pettite is a bit of an eyebrow-raiser, but it’s not that crazy.

As far as the Orioles, we knew Tejada would probably be in there, and the same goes for Larry Bigbie and — unfortunately — Brian Roberts. I couldn’t really care less about the other O’s named. It’s not like I ever really considered guys like Tim Laker and Todd Williams important members of the team.

There is a story here and that is the report itself and the names contained therein. But there is another story that lurks beneath the surface, and that is the issue of steroids themselves and what effect they have had on the game. For every Clemens or Bonds we find there are countless more like Nook Logan and Cody McKay and Ricky Stone.

Clearly the juice had little to no effect on what these guys were able to accomplish.

So if you happen to be one of these “who cares, steroids don’t make you a better ballplayer” types then you, unfortunately, have a leg to stand on here. Most of the big names who juiced were better-than-average performers to begin with. There are going to be people who seize on this to make a “steroids are no big deal argument.” Those people are still wrong, but the issue just got a lot more complex.

All that really matters is what baseball does going forward. If they implement the recommendations and we finally move to a point where the game is as clean as it can reasonably be then, hey, call it a win. The sooner we can close the book on this game of Steroids Gotcha, the better.

So…Erik Bedard to the Reds?

13 comments to Mitchell Report: the Fallout

  • dan the man

    Yeah I’m already ready to move on to more hot stove action.

    But I feel like I’m still trying to judge what exactly Baltimore thinks of Brian Roberts. Regarding Tejada, many O’s fans are likely devastated. For most of us, it was, if not obvious, then expected and thus we probably are not that upset about it, especially since he was just traded and we are happy about that. Fortunately, there were no grisley “somebody injected me in my ass” details or big records that he broke. His streak of consecutive games is a bit tainted, though, I would guess.

    Now we wait for some sort of statement by all these players and that, honestly, is not something I look forward to. Because no one is going to admit it, just like always. Since there’s basically no hard evidence in the report, baseball fans will all be subjected to more bullshit athlete denials and lawyers. Maybe Brian Roberts steps up and follows his buddy Gibbons’ example and owns up to experimenting. Maybe he doesn’t say a damn thing.

    The whole thing makes me feel dirty and the only cure is more A-Mac Action. Cook me up somethin’ tasty on that hot stove, Andy. Baltimore needs a little comfort food.

  • Andrew in Rochester

    Dan, the only issue I take with your point of view, really, is that the Steriod Era is ending. That is yet to be seen. A lot of these guys in the report like Bigbie and Benito Santiago and Bonds and Lo Duca were using the idea that baseball was beginning to test for various steroids to go onto hGH (which is how Bigbie and therefore Brian Bob got caught – trying to order some more delicious hGH) because baseball didn’t – and still doesn’t – have any standard to test hGH. For all we know, Clemens’ success up until this year was due almost entirely to the stuff (and his failure this year? Well, nobody can hold off age forever regardless of wonder drugs – and the man is in Julio Franco territory). For all we know, all of these guys are just using the hGH, some to mixed results, some to great results. There is, unfortunately, just no way to say that this is over while there’s such obvious loopholes.

    If B-Rob owns up and asks for forgiveness, I can do that and forget about this. If he goes the way of Clemens, Guillen, and Palmeiro, we’re talking serious problems. That’s the way of it for me, and you know what, either way his poster stays on my wall (right between the family Ripken and ::gasp:: Mike Mussina). We shall see.

  • dan the man

    Ok, saying the steroid era is ending may be a little premature or even naive. I’ll give you that – but I do feel like progress is being made and that this report helps in some small (or potentially huge) way. People are going to blast Mitchell without even taking into his account his background and record, or that he had literally no power in the investigation, and that he seemed to have purely good intentions. Selig, though, ends up looking like an ass as per usual.

  • random dude

    I think I speak for everyone when I say, I’m just glad that the leaked list wasn’t accurate. I mean, seriously. I would have hated seeing that controversal asterik in the record book next to Fernando Tatis under most grand slams in one inning.

  • neal s

    I bookmarked this gem from the Onion awhile ago, figuring that the Mitchell Report would make a great time to link it. Just remembered I had it this morning…

    BALTIMORE—Following pitcher Jason Grimsley’s allegation that Miguel Tejada had taken performance-enhancing drugs while the two were teammates, Tejada denied all knowledge of Grimsley, Rafael Palmeiro, anabolic steroids, Bud Selig, random drug tests, Jay Gibbons, Brian Roberts, the Orioles baseball organization, and the city of Baltimore. “Jason Grimsley? I’ve never heard of him before in my life. Who is he? Is he a movie star?” Tejada asked reporters Monday. “And what are steroids? People keep saying ‘steroids,’ but I have no idea what that term means. And who are these so-called ‘Baltimore Orioles’ he keeps mentioning? What is going on?” Tejada went on to claim that he cannot recall winning the 2002 AL MVP award, that he has definitely never played Major League Baseball, and that he doesn’t know where he is right now and can’t remember how he got here.

  • dan the man



  • We’ll be covering this on our show tomorrow morning, including a special “guest” player to talk about the report. I believe the report is really just a random sampling of players and that, clearly, the usage was of epidemic proportions throughout the league. Some will choose to talk about the “good” guys- the non users- but, trust me, there won’t be as many as we might hope. Players will always seek a competitive edge and steroids and HGH, if used properly, can give you an advantage. Question is- how much? That’s going to vary from player to player. One thing I like about this report is that it gives scholars a chance to go behind the numbers and perhaps extrapolate some information that might help us get a better handle on just what steroids use has done to the statistics. This won’t make me turn away from baseball. Baseball is still a beautiful game. It’ll taint the reputations of a few, mostly undeservingly in my opinion, but baseball will go on. Well, except for the Orioles. They’ll simply limp.

  • neal s

    I don’t think the Orioles will be as bad as all that. If they were a fourth place team anyway — with no legitimate long-term organizational plan — then why can’t they be that again with a more solid foundation?

    By which I mean that you can make real progress without immediately improving your win total.

    As for the steroids, Marc, I think you’re on the right track. The only thing I really care about now is seeing steps taking to strengthen the testing policies. They’ll never catch everybody, of course, but they can do better.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle


  • dan the man

    interesting article in the sun with segui disputing the roberts name drop and basically all the things that bigbie said about him.

    look, roberts probably did do steroids. i just keep thinking back on that random guy who commented here months ago with all the info about roberts cycling steroids during one offseason. but it’s also a fact that the heresay “evidence” in the mitchell report about roberts is probably the absolute weakest in the entire document. he’s getting a pass all over baseball on his name being included in there by sports writers, players, and analysts.

    on another note, haren being traded makes bedard’s value jump considerably. macphail is doing the right thing by being patient – now he’s just playing on these NL teams’ fears of being dominated by their opponents’ pitching. they’re going to be clamoring for bedard more than ever, and should be willing to part with those upper echelon prospects that andy is asking for.

  • dan the man

    wayward o has a couple of great post-mitchell posts up.. haha

  • Richmond Skins

    Hey… the Mitchell report is great and all, but… the Wizards just beat up on the Kings for their 3rd straight. Sitting Second in the Southeastern Conference. DeShawn Stevenson playing like a man and Caron and Antawn bringing their “A” games. Soon enough (2 months) Arenas will be back and the Wizards will be making a playoff push. Unfortunate loss of AD will hurt (2-4 weeks), but gives Nick Young and Roger Mason Jr. a chance to see some minutes. Give it up for the Wiz, baby.

  • dan the man

    yeah, man, they are holding their own extremely well with only 9 healthy players.. AD is a huge loss but nick young looks like he doesn’t portray many of those rookie shortcomings. much props to the wiz right now – let’s hope they sustain. i’ll have a wizards post shortly..