Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Monday, January 13, 2014

Bill Madden: Alex Rodriguez can’t stop lying

Taking a break from listening to the “Blue Barron: The Zych Years” box set…Madden finds time to zing.

Alex Rodriguez may think he’s still in control here; may think he can further wreak havoc on the Yankees by reporting to spring training; may think, in the meantime, that his hotshot lawyers, who have so far done nothing for him other than pick his pockets for tens of millions of dollars, will find some federal judge to grant an injunction to halt his 162-game suspension.

Through all this disgrace, A-Rod sounds as if he still thinks he controls his destiny in baseball.

Well, here’s a bulletin for him: He controls nothing.

...Even A-Rod knows he can never again play for the Yankees. Not after all this — waging war with them all last summer, suing their team doctor, working behind the scenes with Jay Z to poison Robinson Cano’s relationship with them and, lest we forget, allegedly ratting out his own teammate, Francisco Cervelli, in the Biogenesis scandal. Do you really think Cervelli still believes A-Rod’s denial of that now — after all his other denials of using PEDs have been proven to be outright lies?

No, A-Rod’s career is over and he has no control over that, either. There isn’t a team in baseball that would have him — and if he doesn’t believe that, he should call that other Hall of Fame steroids cheat, Barry Bonds, who at the end of his contract with the San Francisco Giants in 2007 found out just how toxic he’d become. Even though he was 43, Bonds, unlike A-Rod, could still play — he’d just hit .276 with 28 homers and a league-leading .480 on-base percentage — yet never got a single call from another club.

Maybe in his year’s sabbatical from baseball, A-Rod will be able to get some perspective over how his career has come to this — and about the other “users” in his life. “Knowing what we now know — the extent of the evidence against him — for his lawyers to allow this case to go forward and not even put on a case, when they could’ve probably gotten a deal for 100 games, is the worst example of malpractice I’ve ever seen,” a longtime labor attorney said Sunday.

A-Rod could have made a deal in which his transgressions as a serial drug cheat would not have been disclosed, a deal that would have enabled him to get back on the field at some time in 2014. Instead, he’s been exposed as a pathological liar and reduced to a pathetic loser. It’s what happens when you can’t control your own lawyers.

Repoz Posted: January 13, 2014 at 06:37 AM | 63 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: yankees

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: January 13, 2014 at 08:56 AM (#4637589)
This ####### ######### has been wrong and/or lied about so many things in this story. Has he no shame? Or simply no sense of self-awareness?
   2. Lassus Posted: January 13, 2014 at 09:20 AM (#4637595)
and, lest we forget, allegedly ratting out his own teammate, Francisco Cervelli, in the Biogenesis scandal.

Wait. Madden is upset because A-Rod exposed someone else for the same thing that Madden is calling A-Rod a liar about?
   3. bobm Posted: January 13, 2014 at 09:45 AM (#4637601)
Wait. Madden is upset because A-Rod exposed someone else for the same thing that Madden is calling A-Rod a liar about?

A-Rod ratted out a teammate and other players to hide his own misdeeds, not as some courageous whistleblower. It's not that hard to believe A-Rod is a rat and a liar.
   4. fra paolo Posted: January 13, 2014 at 10:25 AM (#4637612)
A-Rod’s career is over and he has no control over that, either. There isn’t a team in baseball that would have him — and if he doesn’t believe that, he should call that other Hall of Fame steroids cheat, Barry Bonds, who at the end of his contract with the San Francisco Giants in 2007 found out just how toxic he’d become. Even though he was 43, Bonds, unlike A-Rod, could still play — he’d just hit .276 with 28 homers and a league-leading .480 on-base percentage — yet never got a single call from another club.

Does this describe collusion?

The more I think about it, the more I think that the MLBPA is boxed into a corner here, and has no way out. Defending A-Rod and Bonds against an overmighty management who will stop at nothing is a PR disaster. I mean, even a sizable portion of the fans of A-Rod's own team are hostile towards him, and I don't think one could say that about Bonds. The union basically shoved the more fondly remembered Bonds under a passing bus, and now they have to do the same with A-Rod.

Sooner or later, some aggressive owner will go too far and that will provide an opportunity to recover some of the ground that the MLBPA has lost here. But A-Rod has to sustain any fight without much public support from the MLBPA.
   5. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: January 13, 2014 at 10:39 AM (#4637628)
Has he no shame? Or simply no sense of self-awareness?


No reason it can't be both.
   6. RobertMachemer Posted: January 13, 2014 at 10:54 AM (#4637637)
Sooner or later, some aggressive owner will go too far and that will provide an opportunity to recover some of the ground that the MLBPA has lost here. But A-Rod has to sustain any fight without much public support from the MLBPA.
I'm not a lawyer, I probably haven't followed the whole affair as closely as I ought. My impression, wrong as it may be, is that Rodriguez has gotten railroaded here by being given an unfairly harsh punishment. And because he is not well liked, the MLBPA, in a position to fight on his behalf, is unwilling to do so because it'll... what... look bad in the court of public opinion? I'm saddened by this, though it probably just reflects my general ignorance of everything that is going on.
   7. fra paolo Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:05 AM (#4637645)
And because he is not well liked, the MLBPA, in a position to fight on his behalf, is unwilling to do so because it'll... what... look bad in the court of public opinion?

A-Rod apparently doesn't have a lot of support among the players, according to various comments I've read on this site saying that the players want to stop PEDs. A union is only as good as its ability to ensure solidarity.

I think the issue here is why didn't the MLBPA test the collusion waters with Bonds, and what might that tell us about their future attitude to A-Rod. It seems likely that A-Rod is going to get the Bonds treatment, and be blackballed from the remainder of his baseball career.

Maybe the MLBPA did make some 'collusion' comments over Bonds, and I've just forgotten.
   8. Good cripple hitter Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:22 AM (#4637655)
I think the issue here is why didn't the MLBPA test the collusion waters with Bonds, and what might that tell us about their future attitude to A-Rod. It seems likely that A-Rod is going to get the Bonds treatment, and be blackballed from the remainder of his baseball career.

Maybe the MLBPA did make some 'collusion' comments over Bonds, and I've just forgotten.

They did. There was an update in a November 2013 article on Bonds: "After Bonds' agent offered his star's services for the minimum salary, the Players Association said it had found evidence of collusion and planned to file a grievance, pending the final act of Bonds' legal drama. Today, the union says the grievance remains, like so much else in Bonds' life, on hold. In theory, he could appeal his criminal conviction all the way up to the Supreme Court and then enter arbitration over the collusion claim." So it's still (AFAIK) possible that a collusion case will be heard.

working behind the scenes with Jay Z to poison Robinson Cano’s relationship with them


Now this I hadn't heard about. Anyone know any details / past stories about this?
   9. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:37 AM (#4637667)
I think that the MLBPA has been supportive of A-Rod. The players individually have not all been supportive, but the union as a body has supported him.
   10. Dale Sams Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:41 AM (#4637676)
Does this describe collusion?


Yeah, but how would expect people like John Henry to pay money to the MLBPA when there was no place at all for Bonds? Not in LF and not at DH.

As far as steroids and owners going too far goes...I think they missed a real opportunity with Manny Ramirez. The Dodgers bought a race car and it turned out to be a souped up Pinto. It's not the Dodgers fault. They did all the diligence allowed them. So they should be able to renegotiate Ramirez's contract.

Add in some clause about 'failing a PED test within one year of signing a contract' to the CBA.
   11. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:53 AM (#4637682)
...Even A-Rod knows he can never again play for the Yankees. Not after all this — waging war with them all last summer, suing their team doctor, working behind the scenes with Jay Z to poison Robinson Cano’s relationship with them and


Wait - amidst everything else ARod was dealing with, he had time to work behind the scenes with Jay Z to poison Cano's relationship with the Yankees?
   12. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:57 AM (#4637683)
A-Rod ratted out a teammate and other players to hide his own misdeeds, not as some courageous whistleblower.


I'm still not clear how ratting out Cervelli would accomplish that, though.

Can you explain it?
   13. Rickey! In a van on 95 south... Posted: January 13, 2014 at 12:01 PM (#4637688)
A union is only as good as its ability to ensure solidarity.


This. Over and over and over again, this. The league doesn't care about "PEDs." They don't care about "steroids." They see the issue as the first crack in the union's solidarity in 40 years and are desperate to use it to break the union into the sad remnants of one such as exists in the NBA and NHL.
   14. bunyon Posted: January 13, 2014 at 12:05 PM (#4637692)


This. Over and over and over again, this. The league doesn't care about "PEDs." They don't care about "steroids." They see the issue as the first crack in the union's solidarity in 40 years and are desperate to use it to break the union into the sad remnants of one such as exists in the NBA and NHL.


Looks like it's working.
   15. Flynn Posted: January 13, 2014 at 12:07 PM (#4637693)
If the MLBPA is going to waffle over protecting a player because of public opinion then all of Marvin Miller's good work has been wasted. The players deserve every screw that will be turned upon them if they decide to throw A-Rod overboard because he's a poopyhead with more money than all but a handful of them will ever earn.
   16. Gonfalon B. Posted: January 13, 2014 at 12:10 PM (#4637696)
Yeah, but how would expect people like John Henry to pay money to the MLBPA when there was no place at all for Bonds? Not in LF and not at DH.

In fairness, the 2008 Red Sox already had a LF and a DH, and they also made the playoffs. But it will never get old looking at the good soldiers in charge of the 2008 Mets, who lost their 41-year-old starting leftfielder before Opening Day, yet chose to ignore league minimum Barry Bonds, preferred to fill the position with a punchless parade of the walking dead, and blew their division for a second consecutive September. It turned out that the 2008 Twins also sacrificed their season to the desires of Bud Selig, but their need for Bonds wasn't as immediately obvious. A few other teams whose April needs were immediately obvious ended up being eliminated by margins that were probably greater than one player could overcome.
   17. willcarrolldoesnotsuk Posted: January 13, 2014 at 12:32 PM (#4637723)
Does this describe collusion?
No. Collusion is not "no one would hire him". Collusion is "everyone got together and agreed that no one would hire him".

It's possible that Bonds' case was collusion, and it's possible that (if Madden is correct that no one will hire him) Rodriguez's case will be collusion. But no, "no one will hire him" does not "describe collusion".
   18. Rickey! In a van on 95 south... Posted: January 13, 2014 at 12:34 PM (#4637726)
If the MLBPA is going to waffle over protecting a player because of public opinion then all of Marvin Miller's good work has been wasted. The players deserve every screw that will be turned upon them if they decide to throw A-Rod overboard because he's a poopyhead with more money than all but a handful of them will ever earn.


I agree 100%. If Tony Clark can't get the union to close ranks and act in everyone's best interests against this offensive the union will break, and the members will get what they vote for.
   19. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: January 13, 2014 at 12:35 PM (#4637731)
Isn't ARod required to attend spring training under his contract? Staying home would give the Yankees the grounds to void his contract which they obviously crave.
   20. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 01:31 PM (#4637791)
This. Over and over and over again, this. The league doesn't care about "PEDs." They don't care about "steroids." They see the issue as the first crack in the union's solidarity in 40 years and are desperate to use it to break the union into the sad remnants of one such as exists in the NBA and NHL.

I think you are giving the owners far too much credit in having some devious master plan.

Selig doesn't want to got down as the "steroid Commissioner", which is how he deserves to be remembered. So, he has launched a targeted vendetta against ARod and Braun, who he knows the other players hate, and don't care about.

This is likely nothing more than a personal crusade to repair Selig's image by beating up on some widely-hated players.

From a business perspective, the PR damage MLB is doing to itself is far more costly than any concessions they can hope to wring from the players.
   21. Nasty Nate Posted: January 13, 2014 at 01:45 PM (#4637808)
Others have pointed it out, but it bears repeating how weird it is that MLB's strategy involves bringing so much attention to the failure of its own testing program.
   22. plim Posted: January 13, 2014 at 01:51 PM (#4637815)
It's possible that Bonds' case was collusion, and it's possible that (if Madden is correct that no one will hire him) Rodriguez's case will be collusion. But no, "no one will hire him" does not "describe collusion".


^^This. All the owners need to do is say, "Even at the minimum, we didn't want all the hub-bub that surrounded signing him."

   19. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:35 AM (#4637731)
Isn't ARod required to attend spring training under his contract? Staying home would give the Yankees the grounds to void his contract which they obviously crave.


He's being removed from the 40 man roster, so he's not required to attend. In fact, he may not be allowed to attend.
   23. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 02:07 PM (#4637833)
I think you are giving the owners far too much credit in having some devious master plan.

Selig doesn't want to got down as the "steroid Commissioner", which is how he deserves to be remembered. So, he has launched a targeted vendetta against ARod and Braun, who he knows the other players hate, and don't care about.

This is likely nothing more than a personal crusade to repair Selig's image by beating up on some widely-hated players.


Snapper, the union is at its weakest point in decades. They are being slaughtered over this sports drugs issue, and have taken losses over the past decade in other labor areas as well. Owners can functionally void large swathes of player contracts now. The union is deeply divided on this issue, and that is not a recipe for a strong foothold in labor negotiations going forward. It's a recipe for disaster.

Your overall opinion on this seems to be basically: steroids users are cheating cheaters so who cares. But the issue has become a big problem for the union.
   24. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 02:20 PM (#4637852)
Owners can functionally void large swathes of player contracts now.

Really? How? Besides ARod, no one with a big contract has gotten more than 50 games recently. That is nowhere close to voiding a 5+ year contract.

The union is deeply divided on this issue, and that is not a recipe for a strong foothold in labor negotiations going forward. It's a recipe for disaster.

The union isn't divided, the vast majority doesn't give two shits about PED users. As long as MLB is going after known and proven users, most players don't care.

I know you hate that position, but it's not the same as being "deeply divided" or "getting slaughtered". Giving up something 95% of your members don't care about is not a real loss.

Where the MLBPA will get slaughtered is if they fight vociferously for the ARod and Braun contingent, and threaten work-stoppage to protect them. That would be an absolute disaster in the PR war, and could lead to the union being broken, with the players who don't want to fight for the users going scab.

   25. chutley Posted: January 13, 2014 at 02:24 PM (#4637855)
Others have pointed it out, but it bears repeating how weird it is that MLB's strategy involves bringing so much attention to the failure of its own testing program.


This seems to be a common sentiment, but I think it's a little misguided. Yes, MLB's testing is far from perfect. And there are some obvious steps that could be taken to make it better able to catch cheaters. But even the most stringent testing in sports(I don't know, maybe cycling & track and field)catches an extremely small percentage of cheaters. Simply having players come to light who were obvious users but passed the testing, isn't really an indictment of the testing system. Testing is just really, really hard, and fairly easy to circumvent for those with the resources to do so. Unless you have players' blood tested multiple times every day for their entire careers, you aren't catching a majority of cheaters.
   26. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 02:38 PM (#4637873)
Owners can functionally void large swathes of player contracts now.

Really? How? Besides ARod, no one with a big contract has gotten more than 50 games recently. That is nowhere close to voiding a 5+ year contract.


"Besides ARod?" There always has to be a first. There can't be subsequent players until there is a first player.

As I said, they just effectively voided $25 million of his contract when the punishment set out in the JDA for a first offense of use or possession is 50 games. And the Yankees will surely look to find some way out of the remaining $60 million.

As I quoted in another thread, Fangraphs' legal analyst Wendy Thurm basically lays out the problem for the players here:

None of the questions we had in August as to how Selig arrived at a 211-game suspension have been answered. And there is nothing we’ve learned since then that explains how the arbitrator concluded that a 162-game suspension was justified under the express terms of the CBA and JDA.

Indeed, the ambiguity of how the JDA applies to a non-analytical positive coupled with the “best interests of baseball” clause in the CBA leave players at the mercy of the commissioner’s office — the exact opposite of what the 50 game-100 game-lifetime ban punishment scheme had intended to accomplish.

If a player fights a suspension based on a positive test, is he acting against the best interests of baseball? If a player seeks evidence to counter a charge of a non-analytical positive, is he impeding MLB’s investigation? These are uncomfortable questions players and the MLBPA are now forced to confront.

   27. McCoy Posted: January 13, 2014 at 02:43 PM (#4637878)

The more I think about it, the more I think that the MLBPA is boxed into a corner here, and has no way out. Defending A-Rod and Bonds against an overmighty management who will stop at nothing is a PR disaster


Why the hell would the union care about what non union members think? The union doesn't have to wage a PR campaign nor has it really ever done so.
   28. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 02:54 PM (#4637887)
The more I think about it, the more I think that the MLBPA is boxed into a corner here, and has no way out. Defending A-Rod and Bonds against an overmighty management who will stop at nothing is a PR disaster


Why the hell would the union care about what non union members think? The union doesn't have to wage a PR campaign nor has it really ever done so.

Because if they strike to defend the PED users, they will have zero public support, and lukewarm support at best from a majority of their members.

That's the scenario where guys cross the picket line, and your union gets broken.

The best tack for the MLBPA will be to agree to harsher sanctions, while eliminating the ambiguity/commissioner's discretion as to punishment.
   29. Ron J2 Posted: January 13, 2014 at 03:03 PM (#4637891)
#27 Miller arranged a coup against Ken Moffett in no small part because Moffett seemed to care about the PR aspect of defending players found to have used recreational drugs.

Miller of course believed exactly what you say in #27/
   30. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 03:18 PM (#4637907)
Miller of course believed exactly what you say in #27/

Miller was acting in a time when the upside for MLB players dwarfed the downside, and owner oppression through the reserve clause was a very real memory of actual players.

Different environments call for different tactics.
   31. McCoy Posted: January 13, 2014 at 03:36 PM (#4637922)
But again why should the players care about what people think of them? Nobody is going to donate a couple of billion dollars to the owners so they can pay their bills should a stoppage come along because of the mean old greedy players. The players have to convince an arbitrator or a labor panel of the legality or illegality of whatever it is they are arguing should it go that far. Otherwise they are simply negotiating with owners over a labor contract and if the owners think they have the upperhand because the public doesn't like the players then they are a pretty stupid bunch that are in for a rude awakening when their bills come due and they have no revenue coming in.
   32. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 03:52 PM (#4637930)
But again why should the players care about what people think of them? Nobody is going to donate a couple of billion dollars to the owners so they can pay their bills should a stoppage come along because of the mean old greedy players. The players have to convince an arbitrator or a labor panel of the legality or illegality of whatever it is they are arguing should it go that far. Otherwise they are simply negotiating with owners over a labor contract and if the owners think they have the upperhand because the public doesn't like the players then they are a pretty stupid bunch that are in for a rude awakening when their bills come due and they have no revenue coming in.

Because, the more the fans side with the players, the more downside the owners face from future revenue loss.
   33. fra paolo Posted: January 13, 2014 at 04:00 PM (#4637940)
But again why should the players care about what people think of them?

Speaking as a former labour activist, it is a lot easier to win a dispute if the Court of Public Opinion is in your favour. It doesn't always work, but the evidence from the history of high-profile industrial disputes is that both sides strive very hard to get the public to support them.
   34. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 04:02 PM (#4637943)
Speaking as a former labour activist, it is a lot easier to win a dispute if the Court of Public Opinion is in your favour. It doesn't always work, but the evidence from the history of industrial disputes is that both sides strive very hard to get the public to support them.

If nothing else it has to do a lot to strengthen/weaken union solidarity. The price of crossing the picket line varies dramatically depending on public opinion.
   35. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: January 13, 2014 at 04:08 PM (#4637948)
None of the questions we had in August as to how Selig arrived at a 211-game suspension have been answered. And there is nothing we’ve learned since then that explains how the arbitrator concluded that a 162-game suspension was justified under the express terms of the CBA and JDA.


Ray, I asked this in another thread because someone said that you had explained, but since you're here...

Wasn't the original suspension "through the end of the 2014 season" or something similar? I know this worked out to 211 games, but that wasn't the punishment as stated. Was there somewhere else that specified the number of games? If not, then wasn't the arbitrator simply completely upholding the original decision? It's just that now it only works out to 162.
   36. McCoy Posted: January 13, 2014 at 04:32 PM (#4637971)
Because, the more the fans side with the players, the more downside the owners face from future revenue loss.

Why? So if the fans think the players are greedy they'll come back after the work stoppage so that they can watch the greedy players play? A work stoppage of any kind hurts MLB at the turnstiles regardless of who gets portrayed as the villain.

Speaking as a former labour activist, it is a lot easier to win a dispute if the Court of Public Opinion is in your favour. It doesn't always work, but the evidence from the history of high-profile industrial disputes is that both sides strive very hard to get the public to support them.



Worked very well for those United Fruit workers. They got everyone on their side and consequently they got massacred.

The players all throughout the Miller era were portrayed as spoiled overpaid athletes that were ruining a great game and fans basically bought into that. They won decision after decision.
   37. dlf Posted: January 13, 2014 at 04:41 PM (#4637981)
Wasn't the original suspension "through the end of the 2014 season" or something similar? I know this worked out to 211 games, but that wasn't the punishment as stated. Was there somewhere else that specified the number of games? If not, then wasn't the arbitrator simply completely upholding the original decision? It's just that now it only works out to 162.


I doubt anyone here has seen the actual written Notice of Intent to Discipline that the league issued. The precise language may be available if/when Rodriguez attaches Horowitz's decision to his Federal appeal.
   38. Squash Posted: January 13, 2014 at 05:19 PM (#4638024)
Others have pointed it out, but it bears repeating how weird it is that MLB's strategy involves bringing so much attention to the failure of its own testing program.

I think it's 100% the reverse in terms of how this is being perceived. Nailing big stars is proof to most people that the testing program/anti-PED program in the larger sense is working. They don't care the specifics - big-name scalps on the wall mean the program is working, regardless of how they got there. And to a certain point I agree. If you've nailed two former MVPs you're doing something "right" (if one believes going after steroid users is right).
   39. Jim Kaat on a hot Gene Roof Posted: January 13, 2014 at 05:35 PM (#4638044)
I mean, even a sizable portion of the fans of A-Rod's own team are hostile towards him, and I don't think one could say that about Bonds.


This says far less about any difference in integrity between Bonds and ARod than it says about the difference of same between Giants fans and Yankees fans.
   40. vivaelpujols Posted: January 13, 2014 at 06:36 PM (#4638105)
This. Over and over and over again, this. The league doesn't care about "PEDs." They don't care about "steroids." They see the issue as the first crack in the union's solidarity in 40 years and are desperate to use it to break the union into the sad remnants of one such as exists in the NBA and NHL.


Completely agree.
   41. Nasty Nate Posted: January 13, 2014 at 06:47 PM (#4638120)
I think it's 100% the reverse in terms of how this is being perceived. Nailing big stars is proof to most people that the testing program/anti-PED program in the larger sense is working. They don't care the specifics - big-name scalps on the wall mean the program is working, regardless of how they got there.


I was considering the testing program as an individual thing.

I think the general public is shrewd enough to notice that all these Biogenesis guys beat the drug tests - over and over again.
   42. Squash Posted: January 13, 2014 at 07:07 PM (#4638144)
I think the general public is shrewd enough to notice that all these Biogenesis guys beat the drug tests - over and over again.

I honestly don't think the general public has any level of knowledge about what went on with Biogenesis other than that ARod got caught. The general baseball-watching public couldn't even give you the name Biogenesis without being prompted, and even then probably not. All they know is ARod got caught.
   43. Squash Posted: January 13, 2014 at 07:11 PM (#4638146)
This. Over and over and over again, this. The league doesn't care about "PEDs." They don't care about "steroids." They see the issue as the first crack in the union's solidarity in 40 years and are desperate to use it to break the union into the sad remnants of one such as exists in the NBA and NHL.

Then I think they're going to be sadly disappointed. Can someone explain the process by which the union being somewhat fragmented over steroids (I don't see much fragmentation, for that matter) leads to a negotiating process where the union is broken?
   44. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 13, 2014 at 07:17 PM (#4638152)
Then I think they're going to be sadly disappointed. Can someone explain the process by which the union being somewhat fragmented over steroids (I don't see much fragmentation, for that matter) leads to a negotiating process where the union is broken?

I don't see it either. Especially since the players are basically willing to give the owners everything they ask for on PEDs.

It's hard to use demands as a wedge against the union, when the union will happily accede to those demands.
   45. Publius Publicola Posted: January 13, 2014 at 07:23 PM (#4638156)
They see the issue as the first crack in the union's solidarity in 40 years and are desperate to use it to break the union into the sad remnants of one such as exists in the NBA and NHL.


Two things:

1) The NBA union isn't in that bad a shape. It's the NFL's union that's a shambles. They don't even guarantee contracts anymore.

2) If I had to blame one person on the state of the union right now, it's Don Fehr. He was very shortsighted, focusing on money issues to the exclusion of all else. And it's come back to bite them in the butt.
   46. Moeball Posted: January 13, 2014 at 07:59 PM (#4638182)


1) The NBA union isn't in that bad a shape. It's the NFL's union that's a shambles. They don't even guarantee contracts anymore.

2) If I had to blame one person on the state of the union right now, it's Don Fehr. He was very shortsighted, focusing on money issues to the exclusion of all else. And it's come back to bite them in the butt.


Wasn't it the '87 labor dispute that basically killed the NFLPA? Memory is hazy after all these years but as I recall the very nature of the sport was what helped to break the union. For example, the average fan cannot tell the difference between a great offensive lineman and a crappy one. What stats do you judge them by? It was very easy to put replacement level product on the field (i.e., "cheap")and still have people be willing to pay full price for it. How do you think college football is so successful? It's nothing more than minor league football but they sell out 100,000 seat stadiums and people pay plenty of $$ to see it. Baseball fans won't put up with that. If the audience doesn't realize it's being hoodwinked and can't tell the difference, the union won't have a lot to stand on, IMHO. There has to be demand for the product and if it is viewed as interchangeable parts...well, good luck with that.

So Donald Fehr wasn't as good as Marvin Miller? What a surprise. The Orioles haven't found any shortstops as good as Cal Ripken, either. Miller was probably about $1 billion WOO (Wins Over Owners) in his career.
   47. Publius Publicola Posted: January 13, 2014 at 08:06 PM (#4638189)
It was very easy to put replacement level product on the field (i.e., "cheap")and still have people be willing to pay full price for it.


Yeah, remember when they used the replacement players and George Plimpton threw 4 touchdown passes?
   48. Jay Z Posted: January 13, 2014 at 08:37 PM (#4638228)
1) The NBA union isn't in that bad a shape. It's the NFL's union that's a shambles. They don't even guarantee contracts anymore.


The NFL rarely guaranteed contracts at any point in its history. Guaranteed contracts, or "no-cut" contracts, were always a big exception.

The fully guaranteed contracts of MLB are an anomaly. For someone like Albert Belle, who is paid in full regardless of whether he's a star or completely unable to play, what other athlete or entertainer has that? The individual athletes and entertainers are tied to purses or to percentage deals, at least partially.

In a perfect world I'd like to see the Trouts getting paid what they deserve immediately. I'd also like to see less dead money go to players who can't play anymore. Probably bigger bonuses for making and advancing in postseason play.
   49. McCoy Posted: January 13, 2014 at 08:55 PM (#4638241)
For someone like Albert Belle, who is paid in full regardless of whether he's a star or completely unable to play, what other athlete or entertainer has that?

All of them? NFL players don't have to give back their bonus if they break their leg while playing football and if anyone has ever seen Matt Geiger's bank account they'll know NBA players get paid regardless of whether they are able to play or not.
   50. Morty Causa Posted: January 13, 2014 at 10:14 PM (#4638283)
A-Rod can't stop lying? Sounds like his performance has been enhanced.
   51. Gonfalon B. Posted: January 13, 2014 at 10:50 PM (#4638294)
Wasn't it the '87 labor dispute that basically killed the NFLPA? Memory is hazy after all these years but as I recall the very nature of the sport was what helped to break the union. For example, the average fan cannot tell the difference between a great offensive lineman and a crappy one. What stats do you judge them by? It was very easy to put replacement level product on the field (i.e., "cheap")and still have people be willing to pay full price for it.

The NFL had a built-in advantage over MLB; more of their seats are sold to season ticket holders. In 1987, NFL fans were told that if they didn't re-up for the scab games, they would lose their plans. Baseball doesn't have the same proportional leverage.
   52. Bruce Markusen Posted: January 13, 2014 at 11:07 PM (#4638305)
A-Rod is acting like The Governor in The Walking Dead. Only instead of screaming, "Kill them all," he's yelling, "Sue them all!"

He's sued everybody except for the New York Daily News.
   53. SoSH U at work Posted: January 14, 2014 at 12:10 AM (#4638332)
A-Rod is acting like The Governor in The Walking Dead.


I hope wears an eye patch when he comes back to play for the Yanks in '15. That would be awesome.

   54. Fancy Pants Handle doesn't need no water Posted: January 14, 2014 at 05:35 AM (#4638383)
I hope wears an eye patch when he comes back to play for the Yanks in '15. That would be awesome.

Surely killing his depth perception will not impact his ability to hit a baseball.
   55. Fancy Pants Handle doesn't need no water Posted: January 14, 2014 at 05:42 AM (#4638384)
I do think it would be ok for the PA do give in to tougher penalties for 1st/2nd time use. But they need to make sure they get one thing back in return: Salaries during any such suspension have to be paid in full. Doesn't have to be to the player. Can be split between the rest of the team's or league's players. Or to players making the minimum, who are the ones hurt most by steroid users.

But they can't allow a situation where MLB or a team has an incentive to get a player popped. It's a completely untenable situation.

It also makes it pretty easy to paint the owners as the bad guys to the public if they don't go for it.They would be the ones choosing money over cleaning up the game.
   56. Moeball Posted: January 14, 2014 at 01:24 PM (#4638675)
The union isn't divided, the vast majority doesn't give two shits about PED users. As long as MLB is going after known and proven users, most players don't care.


Well, they don't give a hoot about A-Rod, of course, but he's painted such a big target on himself that's not a big surprise.

Not sure that was always the case, though. They dragged their heels on getting testing in place and I wonder if part of that was because there were so many players using at the time that there was truly a split within the ranks that some wanted testing and others clearly didn't.

I do think it would be ok for the PA do give in to tougher penalties for 1st/2nd time use. But they need to make sure they get one thing back in return: Salaries during any such suspension have to be paid in full. Doesn't have to be to the player. Can be split between the rest of the team's or league's players. Or to players making the minimum, who are the ones hurt most by steroid users.

But they can't allow a situation where MLB or a team has an incentive to get a player popped. It's a completely untenable situation.


In the next round of negotiations, I could see the Union giving the owners stronger penalties on the "positive tests" portion. But they absolutely must insist that this "King Bud (or fill in the name with whoever is the acting weasel of the moment)can select whatever f'ing penalty he wants at his discretion" BS has got to go.
   57. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 14, 2014 at 01:27 PM (#4638680)
The union isn't divided, the vast majority doesn't give two shits about PED users.


But they do care about their money. It is simply shortsighted to believe that this is restricted to "PED users."

   58. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 14, 2014 at 01:34 PM (#4638683)
But they can't allow a situation where MLB or a team has an incentive to get a player popped.


Do visiting teams take care of their own pre- and postgame spreads? Serious question.
   59. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: January 14, 2014 at 01:36 PM (#4638685)
Surely killing his depth perception will not impact his ability to hit a baseball.


I don't want him to succeed when he comes back. He's a Yankee.

   60. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 14, 2014 at 01:41 PM (#4638690)
Well, they don't give a hoot about A-Rod, of course, but he's painted such a big target on himself that's not a big surprise.

Not sure that was always the case, though. They dragged their heels on getting testing in place and I wonder if part of that was because there were so many players using at the time that there was truly a split within the ranks that some wanted testing and others clearly didn't.


I agree. In the past there was a big divide over PEDs, with many prominent players being big users, who wanted to protect themselves. It seems thought that the pendulum has shifted.

But they do care about their money. It is simply shortsighted to believe that this is restricted to "PED users."

Yes, Ray. But, as long as the MLBPA is willing to accede to stricter terms on PEDs, as long as they get reasonable protections on process, and greater clarity on punishments, I don't see how MLB uses this to go any further.

If the issue doesn't divide the MLBPA, then there's no way for MLB to leverage it to get broader economic concessions.
   61. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 14, 2014 at 01:46 PM (#4638692)
If the issue doesn't divide the MLBPA, then there's no way for MLB to leverage it to get broader economic concessions.


How could the issue not have the potential to divide the MLBPA? Are you saying there are precious few users? That would be the only way I could see the issue not dividing the MLBPA. (At least not initially. Once more players see large swathes of their contracts wiped out they will feel differently.) But I don't think anyone believes that there are only 20 users as opposed to, say, 200. And if there are 200 users then yes, it could well divide the MLBPA. We've heard the more vocal "clean" players (self described as clean, of course). But of course a player who is a user, or who is clean but nevertheless concerned about the sheer obsession to Get ARod and the implications of all of that, is probably less likely to speak out publicly. You're too smart to be fooled by that.
   62. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 14, 2014 at 01:48 PM (#4638694)
Yes, Ray. But, as long as the MLBPA is willing to accede to stricter terms on PEDs, as long as they get reasonable protections on process, and greater clarity on punishments, I don't see how MLB uses this to go any further.


Yeah, because the MLBPA has done a great job to this point.

The drug agreement they negotiated was a flat joke. It had massive holes that MLB exploited to the players' detriment. As a result of Horowitz's ruling, players are in a far worse position than was assumed after the JDA was signed. It was simply not clear before the ruling that first offenders were subject to stacking of penalties by MLB, to say nothing of the sleaze tactics and mob type investigation that MLB employed against ARod, paying off criminals and such.
   63. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 14, 2014 at 02:11 PM (#4638726)
Lupica. Lol. Because when Clemens denied it under oath, as Lupica had demanded, Lupica... still didn't believe him or give him the slightest benefit of the doubt.

Quoting:

But now that all of his charges are part of the record the way Horowitz’s decision is part of the public record, you are reminded of something:

Rodriguez still hasn’t issued a single denial about his use of performance-enhancing drugs under oath.

He didn’t do it when he had the chance in front of Horowitz.

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/lupica-explaining-bosch-evidence-article-1.1578735

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
A triple short of the cycle
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOTP April 2014: BurstNET Sued for Not Making Equipment Lease Payments
(2399 - 7:19am, Apr 24)
Last: formerly dp

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for 4/23/2014
(180 - 7:18am, Apr 24)
Last: Bunny Vincennes

NewsblogMichael Pineda ejected from Red Sox game after pine tar discovered on neck
(33 - 7:10am, Apr 24)
Last: Joe Bivens, Minor Genius

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for 4-24-2014
(1 - 7:07am, Apr 24)
Last: General Zod

NewsblogJosh Lueke Is A Rapist, You Say? Keep Saying It.
(215 - 6:26am, Apr 24)
Last: Ben Broussard Ramjet

NewsblogKeri: Slump City: Why Does the 2014 MLB Season Suddenly Feel Like 1968?
(17 - 6:01am, Apr 24)
Last: RMc's desperate, often sordid world

NewsblogDaniel Bryan's 'YES!' chant has spread to the Pirates' dugout
(188 - 4:32am, Apr 24)
Last: SouthSideRyan

NewsblogDoyel: How was Gerrit Cole not suspended? He basically started the brawl
(28 - 2:44am, Apr 24)
Last: the Hugh Jorgan returns

NewsblogJonah Keri Extended Interview | Video | Late Night with Seth Meyers | NBC
(8 - 1:54am, Apr 24)
Last: Jim (jimmuscomp)

NewsblogOT: The NHL is finally back thread, part 2
(226 - 1:39am, Apr 24)
Last: Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad!

NewsblogColiseum Authority accuses Athletics of not paying rent
(12 - 1:12am, Apr 24)
Last: greenback likes millwall, they don't care

NewsblogMorosi: Diamondbacks' growing gloom might mean doom for manager or GM
(12 - 1:11am, Apr 24)
Last: KT's Pot Arb

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 4-23-2014
(14 - 12:44am, Apr 24)
Last: vortex of dissipation

NewsblogOT: NBA Monthly Thread - April 2014
(498 - 12:39am, Apr 24)
Last: NJ in DC (Now unemployed!)

Newsblog4 balls, you’re out!
(57 - 11:31pm, Apr 23)
Last: Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere

Demarini, Easton and TPX Baseball Bats

 

 

 

 

Page rendered in 1.1086 seconds
52 querie(s) executed