Saturday, June 02, 2007

Bonds and 'The Juice' - The MLB Steroids Scandal

Barry Bonds has landed again in Philly, despite his cloud of suspension of steroid haze that follows him, nothing has happened to him and even some Philly players mingle with him like he's the best thing since sliced bread!

Bonds and the ‘Juice’ Why Hasn’t Bonds Been Suspended?

It seems like an old story now. The story of Barry Bonds using steroids stretches back to 1998 when most experts and testimonies of people who know about Bonds use of steroids agree that ’98 was the start of Barry’s use of illegal substances to enhance his performance on the field. The matter has been dragged in front of the US Congress, played out in front of many courts, employing many experts, and spawning many books about this, and exposed this use to a nation of baseball fans that have acted upon the information like they are waiting on a higher power perhaps the commissioner of the MLB to come out and say something to them. We’ve been waiting for years for someone in charge, someone who can make a ruling, or tell us all, that 'yes' this did happen and here’s the penalty for it. There is a strange silence on this issue from Major League Baseball. The MLB doesn’t like negative attention, in fact they probably wish that this whole situation just sails into the future under the present day situation where not much is said or done about this issue.

It’s not only Bonds that could be punished in this ‘juicing’ – there are a lot of players that could or should be punished, although some are already retired. This has been a tremendous ‘black eye’ to baseball, perhaps when future generations look back at this it may well big the biggest scandal of the MLB’s history. We don’t have any suspensions, no ‘lifetime bans’ as Pete Rose received for being honest in saying that he bet on baseball, not much of anything happened to the players as this controversy developed and encircled them in this cloud of substances. As the scope of the Congressional investigation of doping in the MLB played out, many players were called to testify and it really brought this situation to the front living rooms of fans of baseball. Sosa, McGuire, Palmiero, Giambi, and these are only the bigger stars of the game that we were familiar with, there were or are probably hundreds more of lesser known players that were doing it too. To date though, not too many penalties or fines, or any repercussion of the player’s use of these substances have been handed out.

The official word from the San Francisco Giants is basically silence. They simply don’t comment on it. That is really an ignorant response. You have a player that 99.9 percent positive that he has used steroids, and you say ‘no comment’. So now you have a team that covers this up for a league that appears to want to sweep it under the rug, a player that says “No Comment” about the situation and this whole controversy appears to just roll through the atmosphere unscathed. Baseball fans go to the ballpark, they boo Barry outside of San Francisco, and I suspect even some San Franciscans may count themselves amongst the fans that are telling the MLB that what went on with this situation is wrong, it’s criminal, and without saying so directly want a ‘final answer’ on this sometime before the year 2050!

Bonds got away with the use of steroids with this very same cloak of secrecy and silence. He brought his own personal trainer who supplied him with steroids as a paid member of the San Francisco Giants staff, and despite the Giants knowing that something serious was happening here, they just went along in silent mode letting Bonds get away with anything he wanted to. Why? The supplier who supplied the trainer Greg Anderson with steroids who eventually got them to Bonds plead guilty to distributing anabolic steroids and got a sentence that a shoplifter may have received. He distributed these growth enhancing drugs to more than just Bonds though. A street drug dealer that peddles his drugs would have been sentenced to many years behind bars for doing this. So the story continues, it’s now almost 10 years old, and the MLB probably wishes it would go away. Well the story won’t go away anytime too soon, the All Star Game is even going to be in San Francisco this year, and maybe this is a way for the MLB to punish the San Francisco Giants for their role in the Bonds scandal? Award them a national classic game, maybe somewhere down the road we’ll see if someone is ever held accountable by the MLB for this, or maybe money, power, and politics will smooth it over and keep the real truth from happening.

Rich Baxter / Phillies Audio Blog 2007

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