Saturday, June 16, 2007

One Last “Steroids Rant” for Old Time’s Sake

Thank you for reading this...

The primary premise of this essay is that if you wish to actually fix a problem, say, cheating in MLB, you must fix all sides of it. In this case, the player's side plus the management's, owner's and the commissioner's side.

While I believe Barry knew what he was doing, and that Mark McGwire knew and that Sammy Sosa knew, Bud Selig also knew, Tony Larussa knew about McGwire, Dusty Baker knew about Bonds and Brian Sabean (Giants general manager) knew as well. This seems to be a witch hunt for Barry -- that's OK, if what you want to do is simply fry Barry. But if you want to fix the problem of cheating in baseball, all sides must be investigated.

What I am trying to do is encourage people to think about "the problem" in its real context. Barry is a problem for the MLB, for sure. But really, he isn't the problem but a symptom of the real problem (people cheat when the stakes are high). Management was OK with the cheating as long as it was lucrative and the President wasn't crying about Barry Bonds in his State of the Union address (2003 -- this set the stage for the congressional hearing).

I would like to see the problem fixed (and personally, I would be ok with legalizing performance enhancers for professional athletes, we LIKE superhuman feats, and we are willing to pay for it -- that's why it went on as long as it did as well...we liked it). Bud can say, and I'd applaud him, "Hey, we were just trying to give you what you want!" He isn't saying that. It is probably much closer to the truth than anything you'll hear. I am trying to encourage people to think about all sides of the problem. To that end...

Google will let you create an ad that basically says "Bud Selig is a Liar" and then link it to the search term bud selig.

So I did exactly that. A couple of hours later I checked the stats and nobody in the USA had done the bud selig search other than me. I had to do the search to see if the ad would run. Nobody was running ads on Bud Selig. Probably a smart thing as nobody was searching for Bud either. I had to do something. Nobody came to my site today via the search pacific catch iphone and now I was coming up empty with Bud. What to do?

I added the keyword barry bonds. I checked a while later and – nothing happened. That's because my default CPC was $.20 and barry bonds cost $.50. Tired of coming up empty, I said what the heck, and I took Barry for the $.50.

Predictably he performed way better than Bud. Checked back a few hours later and Barry had generated 500+ impressions and 5 clicks. It was soooo worth the $2.50. I'm going to leave the campaign running until I post this.

It made me happy to be able to do a search on Mr. Bonds and see a Google ad for "Bud Selig is a Liar". I was also the only person running an ad against the search barry bonds.

I can't believe nobody but me had a campaign up and running to capitalize on Barry. That's so shocking only because…Barry capitalizes on Barry, the media capitalize on Barry, the Giants capitalized on Barry, the guys who wrote the book about how Barry cheated capitalized on Barry, the guy who leaked the grand jury testimony was trying to capitalize on Barry, the federal prosecutor(s) try, try, try unsuccessfully to capitalize on Barry, etc. I can't believe there is not an ad. It does make a little sense though because surprisingly (to me) it's not generating that much traffic. But if he ever hits a few more home runs and gets closer to Aaron, that will change and it will be like searching on the "Sopranos" after the finale. You may remember I generated about 200 clicks via 65,000 impressions in about 10 minutes to an ad saying Time Warner chief Richard Parsons needs to go.

For me, seeing "Bud Selig is a LIAR" next to the search results for barry bonds – it cured what ailed me.

Steroids in baseball is almost the perfect hypocrisy. Everyone participated in it. Players, management, owners, media, fans, everyone participated. The hypocrisy was uniformly distributed with no side taking blame and all sides either lying to each other or themselves. I have no objection when the hypocrisy is "fair" like that, and really, here, it was. I'm over it.

But Bud Selig is a liar, and this is the one place where the hypocrisy is not quite fair. See, all the investigations, the Mitchell investigation, really all of this seems like a ruse to catch players, specifically Barry Bonds. I wouldn't have so much of a problem if I heard Mitchell on TV saying, "We are trying to find out which players cheated, but I am also personally committed to finding out what role management had, even the commissioner. What did they know and when did they know it?" But that's not the investigation. The investigation is all about the players, Mitchell isn't trying to find out about conversations Selig had with McGwire, and Sosa, and LaRussa in 1998. Bud's guilty, and he lied. Barry's guilty and he lied. Why does only one side get investigated?

Bud knew, Barry knew. But the investigation isn't about Bud. But, the problem is as much about Bud as it is Barry. Because when there is an incentive to cheat and the stakes are very high, cheating happens. Bud and the management are as much of a part of that problem as McGwire and Sosa (who hit a grand slam on Friday night for his 599th home run, Bud must be loving that), and they all participated for the very same reason: it was lucrative. So lucrative that Mr. Selig and the rest of MLB looked the other way.

Jason Giambi may be a cheater, but he's right, it's time to say MLB screwed up, we're sorry and move on. Bud Selig and management is part of that "we" and baseball won't heal until all sides accept their roles, and figure out the best way to move on from here.

Right now, that's not happening. That's because Bud Selig , the commissioner of MLB, is a hypocrite and a liar.

I miss the Bowie Kuhn days something awful.


twobitwes said...

I agree on your position, everyone knew what was going on with the roids. However in the future spare us all the boring drama of your personal life, ok thanks.

Sammy and Mac came along and did what they did when baseball and America needed it most, no doubt. It was fantastic to see baseball enjoyable and ESPN highlights worth watching again, even if Sen. Kennedy couldn't remember Mac's first and Sammy's sir name's, LOL!

Further more I believe Mac intentionally putthat bottle of andro in the front of hislocker as a diversonary tactic. He knew that sooner or later someone was going to call him and the others on their goings on. The juice masters of the game et el our heros got way too big and started hitting bombs way too often for them to be natural! Besides no one that I know has a head like Elmer Fudd, read Barry Bonds, LOL! Thanks Rommie, out!

merrie said...

Darling, we don't HAVE a commissioner. How dare you dignify him with such a label. The guy masquerading as one is an owner: never mind that he's handed the Brewers over to his daughter to run. I guess he thinks we're all stupid.

Another point. I expect Bonds to be indicted on federal charges, even if they have nada to do with baseball. Should a convicted felon (and trust me, he WILL be convicted) of any kind be allowed to take his place in a record book, let alone the hallowed Hall?
Hank's too classy a guy to have scum like that knock him out of the proverbial box.

Meredith Rich