Thursday, June 18, 2009

Jose Can't See

I just read in my USA Today that Jose Canseco plans to file a class-action lawsuit against Major League Baseball and the players' association, because apparently he feels he has been ostracized for going public with tales of steroids use in the sport. He's going to enlist the help of Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro to go after "lost wages."

Here is is reasoning:

"Because I used steroids and I came out with a book, I was kicked out of the game, but I have not beein inducted into the Hall of Fame."

Ok, Jose, couple things: First off, you were never getting into the Hall of Fame. Ever. That just wasn't going to happen for you. Your career average is .266. You hit a lot of home runs, 462, but you're only 32nd on the all-time home runs list. Fred McGriff is No. 26, he's not in the HOF. Palmeiro is No. 10, he's not in. Sammy Sosa is in sixth-place and after the recent news that he is one of the 103 players who tested positive for performance enhancers in 2003 has led some HOF voters to label him a question mark. Heck, your former teammate Mark McGuire is in 10th-place on the home run list and he received less than 25-percent of the vote in his first shot at the Hall. But with all that said, baseball is not shunning you because of steroids. When I look at your all-time stats, my guess is that you were never going to get in to the HOF. Maybe if there was a "Hall Of The Very Good," then we could talk.

Secondly, you made your bed, time to sleep in it. You wanted money, so you decided to come out with a book that really started this whole steroid mess. Because of your book, baseball could no longer sweep steroids under the rug or beneath the bed - suddenly both MLB and the players' union had to sit up and act like they were concerned. You have been proven right more often than not, and for that I thank you. I think what you did was good for baseball. You turned the spotlight on an ugly part of the game. The problem is, you are also in that spotlight. If voters were on the fence about you before you admitted steroids, they certainly were not going to vote for you afterwards. Heck, Barry Bonds is baseball's home run king, he was a Hall of Fame player before someone replaced his head with a water melon, it has never actually been proven that he used steroids, and yet he is not a sure-fire first ballot Hall of Famer.

So Jose, it's time to go away now. You hit the lottery with the first book, because suddenly there was a voice from the inside of the game telling us what we really already knew. You thought about writing a second book. You took up mixed martial arts. You are doing everything you can to remain in the spotlight, but it's time to call the fight.

Thank you again for what you did for baseball, but don't let the door hit you on the way out.

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