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Saturday, March 02, 2013

Davidoff: A conversation with Goose Gossage

Take his HOF plaque down! The red-winged Goose strikes again!

KD: Do you feel the same way about guys who used greenies?

GG: Oh, You’re not even talking about the same. …I used greenies. I’ve done them. I didn’t have to get up unless I drank a case of beer and stayed up all night. I might take a greenie just to stay awake in the bullpen. But it wasn’t a performance-enhancing drug.

KD: It was illegal, though, right?

GG: Yeah. Does the crime fit the punishment? Are you saying that greenies and steroids, you’re talking about aspirin and whatever.

KD: I guess, guys like (Bob) Gibson and Schmidt, Mike Schmidt, have said, “Hey, if we had access to steroids, I’m not sure I could have passed.” I feel like guys from the ‘60s and ‘70s used the best stuff available to them, which was greenies. And then the stuff got better.

GG: Greenies is like me drinking 10 cups of coffee.

KD: Yeah. Except it’s illegal.

GG: OK. So I’ll admit that I did it. It didn’t make me better. It didn’t make me throw harder. It made me stay awake. And I said this, too: If they deem it that greenies are on the same level as PEDs, then take my plaque down. I suffer the consequences like these __ do.

There’s DUIs and then there’s where you kill you somebody. Is there the same punishment?

Repoz Posted: March 02, 2013 at 07:02 AM | 17 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: greenies, steroids

Reader Comments and Retorts

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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. asinwreck Posted: March 02, 2013 at 10:17 AM (#4379133)
Throw Goose out!
   2. AJMcCringleberry Posted: March 02, 2013 at 10:27 AM (#4379138)
It didn’t make me better. It didn’t make me throw harder. It made me stay awake.

I don't know about Goose, but I tend to do my best work when I'm awake.
   3. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:00 PM (#4379168)
And I said this, too: If they deem it that greenies are on the same level as PEDs, then take my plaque down.


Works for me.

It is so deemed.
   4. Misirlou's got a job, but it don't pay Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:12 PM (#4379172)
So I’ll admit that I did it. It didn’t make me better. It didn’t make me throw harder. It made me stay awake.


And what about the guys that claim steroids didn't make them hit the ball farther, it just helped them recover from injury? Why should we take you at your word and not them? A hangover is a type of injury. Without amps, you wouldn't have been able to perform, at least not at your best. Even you admit that.
   5. Long Time Listener, First Time Caller Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:31 PM (#4379178)
I have literally nothing against drinking heavily, often. However, are we really being asked to respect someone more for taking an illegal drug to recover from irresponsible behavior which will make the product we are paying to see of a lower quality than a person taking an illegal drug to get better at the game that we are paying to see?
   6. alilisd Posted: March 02, 2013 at 12:52 PM (#4379185)
The opacity of the "mind" of Goose Gossage is beyond the ken.
   7. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 02, 2013 at 02:19 PM (#4379210)
Legally, aren't amphetamines considered a more serious drug - illegal for a longer period and carrying a harsher penalty? Not sure how Goose gets to decide that in his universe it is the other way around, with greenies not being a big deal and steroids being a death sentence. I would also disagree with with his analysis of the performance enhancing qualities. With greenies, all you had to do was take the damn pill - you got an immediate boost to your energy level, concentration and stamina. Steroids, as I understand it, don't do much of anything unless they are accompanied by intensive workouts and it takes weeks or months to obtain those benefits. You can't improve your performance by popping a steroid before a big game that followed a night on the town.
   8. cardsfanboy Posted: March 02, 2013 at 02:51 PM (#4379217)
I have literally nothing against drinking heavily, often. However, are we really being asked to respect someone more for taking an illegal drug to recover from irresponsible behavior which will make the product we are paying to see of a lower quality than a person taking an illegal drug to get better at the game that we are paying to see?


I had to highlight that quote. 100% agree with everything said in there.
   9. dlf Posted: March 02, 2013 at 03:13 PM (#4379227)
I'm too lazy to read the linked article, but has anyone asked Goose to explain his loudly stated complaints about drug testing while playing. For those who may not remember, Gossage was suspended by the Padres because he called the GM "spineless and gutless" for having announced that San Diego would not sign a player who had a drug history. Apparently, Goose thought it OK for players to do lines of coke, but steps to improve performance are a no-no.
   10. cardsfanboy Posted: March 02, 2013 at 03:40 PM (#4379238)
Apparently, Goose thought it OK for players to do lines of coke, but steps to improve performance are a no-no.


From the excerpt, it seems that is still the case. I understand that point of view, but don't agree with it in the slightest. On top of that, it's incredibly naive/stupid to think that greenies aren't performance enhancers.
   11. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: March 02, 2013 at 05:43 PM (#4379288)
On top of that, it's incredibly naive/stupid to think that greenies aren't performance enhancers.

Disingenuous is the word I was thinking of, considering the source.
   12. Ray (RDP) Posted: March 02, 2013 at 09:52 PM (#4379372)
Disingenuous is the word I was thinking of, considering the source.


Yeah. The drugs _he_ took to play better were ay-okay. But the drugs these players took were not.

It's not exactly shocking.
   13. alilisd Posted: March 03, 2013 at 12:20 PM (#4379727)
@ 7: No, your understanding is not correct. AAS do bring about pretty remarkable changes in the body even without working out and much more rapidly than weeks.
   14. bookbook Posted: March 03, 2013 at 02:18 PM (#4379791)
Hypocrisy in a baseball player? My entire understanding of the world is shattered
   15. Ron J2 Posted: March 04, 2013 at 12:22 PM (#4380197)
#9 He was talking specifically about Tim Raines -- who was at that point clean and would have been a great addition. (Gossage's outburst is part of the inspiration to "Will the McMeeting Come to Order". One of my favorite Bill James pieces)

Worth noting how Whitey Herzog stood on the matter. Took the strongest possible stand against players currently using but had no problems picking up players who had put it behind them.
   16. Ron J2 Posted: March 04, 2013 at 12:25 PM (#4380198)
#13 What's your source for this? I'm fairly well read on the topic and am not familiar with any authoritative studies on the matter.

Please note that I'm not saying they don't work. Completely different issue.
   17. Hello Rusty Kuntz, Goodbye Rusty Cars Posted: March 04, 2013 at 12:32 PM (#4380203)
So Gossage called Smith "spineless and gutless." Goose said of team owner Joan Kroc, widow of McDonald's hamburger founder Ray Kroc: "She's poisoning the world with her hamburgers."

I wonder what Tony Gwynn took to get ready after staying up all night eating hamburgers.

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