You ever encounter a person you just don’t like? You don’t know why. They seem nice. They have lots of friends. Don’t do anything to bother you. You just don’t like them. That’s how I think we are beginning to feel about Roger Clemens.
And despite all this, I think he still belongs in the Hall of Fame.
I don’t like Clemens. Never have. But I subscribe to the school of black and white. And nowhere in the Hall of Fame guidelines is ‘upstanding moral character’ a qualifier. It has become an subjective consideration as baseball writers play baseball God and deem who is good enough, often ignoring several key stats. (But we won’t get into that today.)
No, today we’re going to briefly discuss why Clemens off the field antics have no bearing on his on the field performance. First, the steroids. There is so much garbage tied to this case that it’s not worth getting into all of it for the sole reason that it’s all speculation. Nothing was proven. Nothing. You can point to the evidence, point to the testimonies but through all of that no one was able to make anything stick. So, until they do he still hasn’t broken any rules. So technically he should be in the hall.
But what about his relationship with Mindy McCready, the up and down country singer who at 15 was burning bright and at 30 is trying to make a comeback? Well, outside of the obvious (uh – why are you making eyes with a 15 year old when your 28?) what has he done that affects his criteria for getting into the hall. I think the fact that his friends and family know he was possibly making time with the fine young lady below is enough.
I’ve been banging this drum for a while. Barry Bonds, even with his admitting to using creams still hasn’t done anything that should keep him from the hall. Tax evasion? Please; what impact does this have on his play? And if you want to cite the speculated rampant steroid use, do so; but until you can prove it don’t let it affect your vote.
Then again, what do I know; I still think Pete Rose belongs in the hall. The fact that one of baseball’s greatest pitchers (maybe greatest period), all time hits leader and all time home run leader won’t be in the hall of fame really saddens me. It saddens me that the players made major errors in judgement when it came to living their life to even get int his position. But it saddens me even more that something that has no bearing on their accomplishments will dictate their position in baseball history.