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Should Pete Rose be Reinstated into Baseball?


jaker52
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That's why I feel that Bonds should be in...he was just part of what MLB was wanting to get out of their post-strike blues. He was playing within their rules and their wishes.

It still tainted the integrity of the game. It just so happens that the owners were along for the ride.

It's also worth noting that MLB's rules regarding PEDs, informal or otherwise at the time, never superseded the laws of the state. Baseball didn't bare them from the game because they were already illegal.

I think what gets a little lost is that MLB itself will forever have to wear that enabled juiced era crown as much as the players who will never be elected to the HOF.

Just as future gens will wonder why few superstar HOF players from year x to y, they'll also learn how MLB enabled the sham to begin with.

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That's why I feel that Bonds should be in...he was just part of what MLB was wanting to get out of their post-strike blues. He was playing within their rules and their wishes.

It still tainted the integrity of the game. It just so happens that the owners were along for the ride.

It's also worth noting that MLB's rules regarding PEDs, informal or otherwise at the time, never superseded the laws of the state. Baseball didn't bare them from the game because they were already illegal.

I think what gets a little lost is that MLB itself will forever have that gap of HOF era class, if you will, from the HOF also- an abyss of the league itself. It isn't just the individual stars who juiced being nulled & voided... MLB won't escape the fact they essentially enabled the era to occur.

History isn't going to be bias.

No, history will be biased. It always is once you move beyond the realm of pure factual information. Barry Bonds took steroids and other PEDs. That's unbiased fact. Barry Bonds should be kept from the Hall of Fame because of that. That's a biased conclusion reached by interpreting the earlier fact.

MLB won't escape the fact that they enabled the era to occur, but that's almost an entirely different discussion. It did occur, and how involved MLB leadership was is secondary to the fact that cheating ran rampant. And those cheaters, like the ones who threw the integrity of the game into question before them, need to accept the consequences of their actions. So what if an entire era of "great" players is almost entirely unrepresented? That's on them for breaking the rules in the first place. If you let them in you're essentially supporting the act of cheating and supporting acts which tarnished the game's integrity.

I, for one, am happy that Hall of Fame voters are acting "sanctimonious" about this. Owners didn't hold these players accountable. Fans didn't hold these players accountable (and still make excuses for them). Baseball didn't hold these players accountable. Someone has to. Might as well be the Hall of Fame voters.

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But then the Hall of Fame voters -- the baseball writers -- are also unaccountable. There was some isolated brave reporting about McGwire's Andro, but there was a much more strident cacophony of baseball writers all too happy to stick their fingers in their ears while shouting "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME."

Maybe Bonds and Clemens get in via the Veteran's Committee. Surely future Craig Biggio will want to give Jeff Bagwell a hand.

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Yeah, if the Hall of Fame Chris Benoit'd Rose, such as showing an all-time hits chart with a blank next to 1. it would be silly. Recognize what he achieved but let him stay out.

An interesting thought, though. Rose got caught just three years after retirement. He would have certainly gone into the Hall of Fame on the first ballot in 1992. So I wonder what HOF would have done had Rose got busted in 1993. Has anybody ever been removed from the Hall?

Don't think anyone has been removed from the Baseball Hall of Fame. My baseball knowledge is sketchy at best - maybe someone else can confirm on deny this. I'm guessing that in the 'big 4' major leagues in North America this is the closest to a removal:

Eagleson voluntarily resigned from the Hockey Hall of Fame with an impending board vote on expelling him.

http://www.cbc.ca/archives/entry/alan-eagleson-resigns-from-the-hockey-hall-of-fame

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But then the Hall of Fame voters -- the baseball writers -- are also unaccountable. There was some isolated brave reporting about McGwire's Andro, but there was a much more strident cacophony of baseball writers all too happy to stick their fingers in their ears while shouting "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME."

That's true. The whole sport was scummy in retrospect. I'm just happy that someone in some position of authority within the sport is finally recognizing that and choosing not to ignore it.

What's the alternative? Let them in? Isn't that just more of the same "fingers in ears" approach that let things get out of hand in the first place?

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But then the Hall of Fame voters -- the baseball writers -- are also unaccountable. There was some isolated brave reporting about McGwire's Andro, but there was a much more strident cacophony of baseball writers all too happy to stick their fingers in their ears while shouting "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME."

That's true. The whole sport was scummy in retrospect. I'm just happy that someone in some position of authority within the sport is finally recognizing that and choosing not to ignore it.

What's the alternative? Let them in? Isn't that just more of the same "fingers in ears" approach that let things get out of hand in the first place?

Kick everyone out and revote. That way Ruth and others get in unanimously like they should have originally.

Or just admit that everyone acted poorly from 1997-2003 and slap an asterisk on the era.

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But then the Hall of Fame voters -- the baseball writers -- are also unaccountable. There was some isolated brave reporting about McGwire's Andro, but there was a much more strident cacophony of baseball writers all too happy to stick their fingers in their ears while shouting "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME."

That's true. The whole sport was scummy in retrospect. I'm just happy that someone in some position of authority within the sport is finally recognizing that and choosing not to ignore it.

What's the alternative? Let them in? Isn't that just more of the same "fingers in ears" approach that let things get out of hand in the first place?

Kick everyone out and revote. That way Ruth and others get in unanimously like they should have originally.

Or just admit that everyone acted poorly from 1997-2003 and slap an asterisk on the era.

See, that's why I don't give these voters much respect....the grudges and vendettas they hold. A guy was a jerk to the media? We'll hold that against him. Babe Ruth wasn't a unanimous selection? I'm turning in a blank ballot. These BBWA are a collection of jacklegs.

If padded stats is the entirety of questionable integrity, I can live with that. Still takes a lot of effort to throw the ball, hit the ball, field the ball, run the bases, etc. I'll gladly accept inflated stats over gambling because using steroids means you're actually trying your best...within the parameters the sport is allowing...to win games.

Don't believe IceCap's being fair with slapping the 'cheating' label on alleged steroid users before testing came around. Who are they cheating? Wasn't the game....MLB wasn't discouraging it. Wasn't the fans....they were coming out and watching on TV. Wasn't the rules....there was no rule or punishment for using enhancers. Wasn't their peers....they were juicing, too. Are steroid users really at more of an advantage than those players that played before the color barrier was broken?

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Don't believe IceCap's being fair with slapping the 'cheating' label on alleged steroid users before testing came around. Who are they cheating? Wasn't the game....MLB wasn't discouraging it. Wasn't the fans....they were coming out and watching on TV. Wasn't the rules....there was no rule or punishment for using enhancers. Wasn't their peers....they were juicing, too. Are steroid users really at more of an advantage than those players that played before the color barrier was broken?

Yes. To all of it, basically. These players took illegal supplements to gain a competitive advantage. It's almost the dictionary definition of the term "cheating."

But then the Hall of Fame voters -- the baseball writers -- are also unaccountable. There was some isolated brave reporting about McGwire's Andro, but there was a much more strident cacophony of baseball writers all too happy to stick their fingers in their ears while shouting "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME."

That's true. The whole sport was scummy in retrospect. I'm just happy that someone in some position of authority within the sport is finally recognizing that and choosing not to ignore it.

What's the alternative? Let them in? Isn't that just more of the same "fingers in ears" approach that let things get out of hand in the first place?

Kick everyone out and revote. That way Ruth and others get in unanimously like they should have originally.

Or just admit that everyone acted poorly from 1997-2003 and slap an asterisk on the era.

See, I'm fine with admitting that everyone acted poorly from 1997-2003. I'm not sure why admitting that means that the players need to go into the Hall. Admitting that it was that bad is reason enough to keep them all out. It just seems like admitting the steroid era guys sends the message that cheating, and thus damaging the game's integrity, is ultimately ok. An acceptance that if enough people turn a blind eye to an illegal activity it suddenly becomes ok.

Hold people accountable for their actions. If an entire generation of "great" players is left out of the Hall? That's on that generation of players. No one else.

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Don't believe IceCap's being fair with slapping the 'cheating' label on alleged steroid users before testing came around. Who are they cheating? Wasn't the game....MLB wasn't discouraging it. Wasn't the fans....they were coming out and watching on TV. Wasn't the rules....there was no rule or punishment for using enhancers. Wasn't their peers....they were juicing, too. Are steroid users really at more of an advantage than those players that played before the color barrier was broken?

Yes. To all of it, basically. These players took illegal supplements to gain a competitive advantage. It's almost the dictionary definition of the term "cheating."

By who's rules?

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Don't believe IceCap's being fair with slapping the 'cheating' label on alleged steroid users before testing came around. Who are they cheating? Wasn't the game....MLB wasn't discouraging it. Wasn't the fans....they were coming out and watching on TV. Wasn't the rules....there was no rule or punishment for using enhancers. Wasn't their peers....they were juicing, too. Are steroid users really at more of an advantage than those players that played before the color barrier was broken?

Yes. To all of it, basically. These players took illegal supplements to gain a competitive advantage. It's almost the dictionary definition of the term "cheating."

By who's rules?
Americas....
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I've long-contended that there were many factors into why Bonds and everyone else were hitting so many homeruns:

- Watered-down pitching due to expansion. 60-70 pitchers that were not MLB-ready were in the league. Took about 15 years for pitching to catch up.

- Smaller ballparks. Philadelphia and Cincinnati became hitter havens. Factor in Coors Field and Arizona's elevation-aided parks as well. Even New Yankee Stadium is a better hitter's park than the previous stadium.

- Tighter-wound baseballs.

- Seemingly unlimited amount of batting armor that lead to no fear of the inside pitch. Bonds looked like the Tin Man at the plate.

- Little-to-no shaming in striking out, as well as managerial strategies of waiting/relying on the 3-run homer. It wasn't discouraged to still swing for the fences on 2-strike counts.

Did steroids and PED's help? Sure. But it's not the be-all answer to the hitting explosion. And as DG noted, MLB didn't discourage players from getting assistance...they probably even encouraged players. "Chicks dig the long ball!"....remember that?

There were more variables. And that's a good list. The juiced ball got so much press. I always thought the smaller ballparks should have received more.

The same writers who are on their high horse and keeping the steroid abusers out of the Hall had the biggest story of their sports writing lives right in front of them and dropped the ball, or worse.

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Don't believe IceCap's being fair with slapping the 'cheating' label on alleged steroid users before testing came around. Who are they cheating? Wasn't the game....MLB wasn't discouraging it. Wasn't the fans....they were coming out and watching on TV. Wasn't the rules....there was no rule or punishment for using enhancers. Wasn't their peers....they were juicing, too. Are steroid users really at more of an advantage than those players that played before the color barrier was broken?

Yes. To all of it, basically. These players took illegal supplements to gain a competitive advantage. It's almost the dictionary definition of the term "cheating."

By who's rules?
Americas....

There are laws on domestic violence and drunk driving, amongst other things, and there's current members of the Hall guilty of breaking those laws. So hiding behind "It's illegal!" is a flawed argument.

Besides, steroid use in baseball has been rampant since the 60's. I'll wager any of you a 4-figure sum that there's at least one steroid user already in baseball's Hall.

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Don't believe IceCap's being fair with slapping the 'cheating' label on alleged steroid users before testing came around. Who are they cheating? Wasn't the game....MLB wasn't discouraging it. Wasn't the fans....they were coming out and watching on TV. Wasn't the rules....there was no rule or punishment for using enhancers. Wasn't their peers....they were juicing, too. Are steroid users really at more of an advantage than those players that played before the color barrier was broken?

Yes. To all of it, basically. These players took illegal supplements to gain a competitive advantage. It's almost the dictionary definition of the term "cheating."

By who's rules?

The law's rules. Saying "they weren't banned by baseball" is kind of a weak argument when the supplements in question were illegal in the countries MLB operates in.

There are laws on domestic violence and drunk driving, amongst other things, and there's current members of the Hall guilty of breaking those laws. So hiding behind "It's illegal!" is a flawed argument.

No Hedley, it's not flawed. Beating your wife or drinking and driving, while horrible, don't affect the integrity of the on-field game itself. Gambling on the game while playing and managing? That affects the on-field integrity of the game. Using illegal supplements? That affects the integrity of the on-filed game. The crimes you brought up don't.

I'll wager any of you a 4-figure sum that there's at least one steroid user already in baseball's Hall.

And if you can prove it? I'll be the first to say that player should be removed. Which goes back to my above point. OJ Simpson's been accused and convicted of a number of crimes. I'm not for removing him from the Football Hall of Fame because those crimes don't taint the integrity of his on-field accomplishments. The gamblers and steroid users in baseball though? Their actions do taint their on-field accomplishments.

I'm sorry but the "was it REALLY cheating?" argument seemed like a case of splitting hairs back then, and it still does today. Yes, it was cheating. Everything else is just a rationalisation.

"Yeah, it was cheating but the owners looked the other way."

"Yeah, it was cheating but baseball secretly encouraged it."

"Yeah, it was cheating but fans had a good time."

"Yeah, it was cheating but the parks were smaller anyway."

"Yeah, it was cheating but everyone was cheating."

I teach for a living. "Yeah, it was cheating but..." is simply the first part of a very flawed argument.

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The problem I have with the steroid era is that I can't see a scenario where there isn't going to be inconsistencies with who gets in and who doesn't. Some guys are going to get into the hall of fame who have links to the steroid era while others are left out.

David Ortiz comes to mind. With as important as he's been to the Red Sox recent run, and with how much the media just eats his story up, I can't possibly see him being left out of the Hall of Fame despite his failed drug test.

If you're going to keep one guy out due to his links with steroids, you'd better keep them ALL out. But is that even possible?

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But then the Hall of Fame voters -- the baseball writers -- are also unaccountable. There was some isolated brave reporting about McGwire's Andro, but there was a much more strident cacophony of baseball writers all too happy to stick their fingers in their ears while shouting "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME."

Maybe Bonds and Clemens get in via the Veteran's Committee. Surely future Craig Biggio will want to give Jeff Bagwell a hand.

I've mentioned it before, but this is the foremost example in my mind. In 1999, Sammy Sosa showed up to spring training fashionably late like always. He said he was late because he had been working out extra hard after his whirlwind offseason. Well, the local reporters actually raved about his dedication and talked about the fact that he added 15 pounds of muscle in his forearms alone! Honest to God, the media reported that he had added 7.5 pound of muscle to each forearm over a four month period and didn't see anything worth questioning.

Also, to Ice_Cap mentioning Bonds' hand-eye coordination. I learned a great deal from the book Game of Shadows and I highly recommend it. It mentioned that Bonds had unbelievable vision to begin with. He could read a sign on a highway from a distance so great that someone with 20/20 vision would not yet be able to see that there even was a sign. However, once he started taking HGH, his vision and hand-eye coordination actually did improve. PEDs could take a swing-from-the-shoetops slugger like Sosa and turn him into a 600 homer guy, but when you gave them to a guy who was already a first ballot HOFer, it was almost like creating a 100 overall guy in a video game and still playing with a cheat code. Honestly, Bonds became the villain in superhero movies who got injected with serum and became seemingly unstoppable.

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Where do we draw the line on guys not being Hall-worthy because of things being illegal? Driving while your blood-alcohol level is above a certain point is illegal, too. Pretty sure there's guys in the Hall that have gotten DUI's at some point.

As long as you're not causing doubt into the legitimacy of the game or breaking the sport's rules, I do believe you can be an idiot and still be Hall-worthy. And it's not like Bonds had an advantage....the pitchers were roided up, too. It was an even playing field.

You draw the line where the infraction in question clearly violates the integrity of the game, or puts it in significant question. DUI's don't enhance performance. Amphetamines, as was alleged to be rampant in the 70's, aren't a proven performance enhancer. Cocaine, marijuana, heroin? Not demonstrative as performance enhancers. Anabolic steroids? Unquestionably drugs that enhance performance and thus bring the legitimacy of performances into question.

I've long-contended that there were many factors into why Bonds and everyone else were hitting so many homeruns:

- Watered-down pitching due to expansion. 60-70 pitchers that were not MLB-ready were in the league. Took about 15 years for pitching to catch up.

- Smaller ballparks. Philadelphia and Cincinnati became hitter havens. Factor in Coors Field and Arizona's elevation-aided parks as well. Even New Yankee Stadium is a better hitter's park than the previous stadium.

- Tighter-wound baseballs.

- Seemingly unlimited amount of batting armor that lead to no fear of the inside pitch. Bonds looked like the Tin Man at the plate.

- Little-to-no shaming in striking out, as well as managerial strategies of waiting/relying on the 3-run homer. It wasn't discouraged to still swing for the fences on 2-strike counts.

Did steroids and PED's help? Sure. But it's not the be-all answer to the hitting explosion. And as DG noted, MLB didn't discourage players from getting assistance...they probably even encouraged players. "Chicks dig the long ball!"....remember that?

That's why I feel that Bonds should be in...he was just part of what MLB was wanting to get out of their post-strike blues. He was playing within their rules and their wishes.

I've heard these points argued before, and they hold water right up to the point where you look at Bonds' comparative season-by-season statistics during the era. The watered-down pitching argument gets blown away in Bonds case because had that been a factor, he'd have been right up there with the other juicers (McGwire/Sosa) in 1998. Instead his most prolific season was 2001, four years after the expansion and a time by which the league-wide pitching levels had settled. Another point to consider is that Bonds played more games against an expansion team (Arizona) in '98 than McGwire or Sosa, further negating that argument.

I can't address the stadia point, but would suggest that anyone wanting to consider this a factor look at the 3 years immediately preceding, and the 3 years immediately following, a stadium transition.

During the '98 season there was press attention paid to the balls, implying they were juiced along with the players. Independent studies were commissioned, baseballs were sliced, x-rayed, etc. The results? The ball used in 1998 was identical to that used in 1988 save the graphics screen printed on them.

Batting armor, if anything, I think would lead to an increase not in power status, but in hit by pitches - with pitchers more willing to throw inside and jam hitters.

The Earl Weaver school of baseball strategy is an interesting theory, but if that were the case in the 1970's Baltimore should have had a laundry list of sluggers in its lineup to work that strategy. The biggest names I can recall from that era were Ken Singleton and (for one year) Reggie Jackson.

Kick everyone out and revote. That way Ruth and others get in unanimously like they should have originally.

Kick everyone out, and eliminate the practice of inducting people entirely. Emphasize the "and museum" part of the "Hall of Fame and Museum."

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As someone who took adderall in high school for ADD, I can confirm that amphetamines have significant performance enhancing qualities. They increase strength and stamina and suppress appetite, and increases attention which all those things I'd include as performance enhancers. Also cocain is definitely a performance enhancer, they increase stamina, speed and some other things I'd have to look up to find but i know it is a performance enhancer that also is a recreational drug.

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