Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My take on Mark McGwire

I made some notes on the Costas-McGwire interview.

McGwire got all emotional and cried several times.

He admitted to taking steroids but not for the purpose of cheating.

Although not as bad as Peter Gammons (Melissa Rivers asks tougher questions than the ones Gammons posed to Alex Rodriguez in a similar interview last year), Bob Costas didn’t hold McGwire’s feet to the fire. He didn’t really cross-examine him.

McGwire stated that he’s wanted to come clean for five years now.

McGwire couldn’t be more contrite and apologetic.

These were notes I took BEFORE the interview.

It was that predictable. And boring. Halfway through I thought, why don’t I just pop in my DVD of FROST/NIXON? At least that was somewhat entertaining and the acting was convincing. This was just an orchestrated damage control charade. Tom Hanks’ line in LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN was wrong. “There is nothing BUT crying in baseball.”

Poor Mark McGwire. Your heart has to go out to a guy who broke baseball’s most cherished record under false pretenses. He had to live with his guilt for five whole years. If he was so tortured by this why did he wait five years to come clean? Was it his conscience, his realization that he owed the world the truth? No. It’s because he accepted a job as the St. Louis Cardinals’ hitting coach and knew he would have to face the media.

So who gives a shit that he’s crying on MLB.TV? I’d rather they show a replay of the 1969 World Series or a winter league game from Venezuela.

McGwire cheated, knew he cheated, on the advice of his handlers denied that he cheated, and now wants forgiveness so he can get back in the game he disrespected and not have to play golf under an assumed name.

I’ll forgive him when Roger Maris does.

How ironic and sad that the only person who seems to be telling the truth in this whole steroid debacle is Jose Canseco.

AMERICAN IDOL review late tonight. I expect fewer tears than the McGwire interview.

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

He can have my forgiveness if he thinks that will get him into heaven. He can't have it if he thinks it will get him into Cooperstown.

Michael Tassone said...

i love this place.

Kevin B said...

Yet McGwire still adamantly denies that Jose Canseco injected him back in the day. As if we should believe a word that pock faced cheat has to say ever again.

Rose Vanden Eynden said...

Bravo, Ken! I couldn't agree more!

Alan Coil said...

As with the Tiger Woods situation, I care little. I just don't have it in me to get all hepped up over things that are none of my business (Tiger) or a situation where many people were doing it, but it wasn't against the rules, and aside from that, the Commissioner didn't care enough to get involved until after Congress did. If people want to be pissed about steroids in baseball, they should be pissed at the commissioner and the owners who let it go on for so long.

DonBoy said...

What I don't get is, how can you be a hitting coach while admitting that, when you were doing it, you were benefiting from PIDs? "Coach, what's wrong with my swing?" "Fuck if I know, when I had problem I just shot myself up with stuff."

Vermonter17032 said...

Mark McGwire coming clean about steroid use produces the same shocked reaction as Liberace coming out of the closet.

wv: reepsysi - PED that builds muscle, but with the side effect of making the user into a cry baby.

Daddy Background said...

Hey Ken.

That was perfect.ingia

Sherri said...

My favorite part was his saying that he wished he hadn't played in the steriods era. Dude, you created the steroids era!

D. McEwan said...

Now admittedly, I haven't watched a baseball game in 44 years, and am not emotionally invested in any aspect of the game. If it vanished off the earth tomorrow, it would leave no hole in my life, but even I was struck by this line:

"He admitted to taking steroids but not for the purpose of cheating."

So he cheated, but not for the purposes of cheating?

1. Does the "purpose" matter? Cheating is cheating.

2. Would anyone take from their spouse as an acceptable excuse: "I cheated, but not for the purpose of cheating"?

When I was in high school, and the coaches were justifying to me why the school district had millions to spend (literally millions) upgrading an existing football stadium while I was still performing in school plays being done in the cafeteria, because they had no money to build an auditorium (this year, 41 years after my graduation, they just spent $4 million re-upgrading that stadium. They still have no auditorium), as well as trying without success to seduce me into the sports program, they always said: "Sports builds character."

Well, once again I have seen just how much character "Winning isn't the main thing; it's the only thing" builds. Sports doesn't build character; it builds characterS.

Patrick said...

Ken, if you had done the interview instead of that monkey in a suit, Costas, I might have actually watched. I won't say any more on the subject for fear of boring myself to sleep at the computer as I type. In the mean time, I'm SO looking forward to the day when what I hear on sports news shows is actually about sports.

Tom Quigley said...

I would have laughed if Bob Costas had stretched himself up to his full 5'7" to try to look as tall as possible, and McGwire, towering over him at 6'5", looked down and said "Say there, little fella -- you ever give any thought to undergoing some HGH therapy?"....

Anonymous said...

Didn't see the interview but surprised that Costas, a man I respect, didn't do any hard hitting follow up questions. McGwire is a cheat. Period. No Hall of Fame. And no single season home run record. Wipe it out. And a public apology to Mrs. Roger Maris, the Maris family and baseball in general for being a self-centered cheat. And then just disappear. Forever. With your fake tears.

itstartedwithawindmill said...

He denied taking steroids many times. He claimed that he hit the most home runs in Little League and college, so it makes sense that he did it in the major leagues. Mark is a liar, period. He would never have touched the records without being juiced.

Parvenue said...

Off topic--did you see this week's "Men of a Certain Age"?

One of the best written, acted, directed episode of the genre...

John said...

He came clean, but at the same time claimed the steroids did nothing to make him hit more home runs -- which as several thousand others have already pointed out, is still McGwire in denial, since any extra distance added to what might have been deep fly outs turned them into homers, and the reason why he ended up in St. Louis in the first place was he was breaking down all the time in Oakland. The steroids upped his ability to stay in the lineup dramatically, and you can't hit homers if you're on the DL all the time, which is pretty much where Mark was before he found his magic elixir.

David K. M. Klaus said...

I wonder of they'll take McGwire's episode of The Simpsons out of syndication rotation?

Aw, what am I thinking? This is Fox. They'll make new advertising for it as a special.

He was my younger son's first hero. At the age of three, all his pre-school class could talk about was "Ma MaGwiuh", as he barely pronounced it. When we got to go to a game at Busch Stadium he was ecstatic to see McGuire at bat in person, even from the bleachers, even though he flied out twice and hit no homers that game.

It's for cheating my three-year-old son that I would spit on him.

Matt A said...

A. I'm a Cub fan. Nothing from 1969 should ever be repeated, including the World Series.

B. I'll get moralistic against McGwire when reporters get moralistic against the players' union which made making the most money possible the be-all and end-all of Major League baseball. Instead, all we read anDd hear about is that the greedy owners destroyed the game. Ther's actually plenty of blame to go around.

Anonymous said...

I like McGwire, even loaned him a garage door opener once, but for him to say he took steroids in low doses and not to enhance performance sort of defies believability. Maybe he didn't intend to improve his performance but he certainly must have noticed he was hitting 30 more homers in one season than he ever had in his career. So if he was having a crisis of conscience he could have stopped taking them immediately.

The funny thing is both him and Sosa were doing it, so there we were cheering on the two biggest cheaters in their quest to catch Maris. (And to think Maris' kids were there to congratulate him)

On the other hand it's hard to imagine where baseball would be today if not for their historic home run chase. MLB had been badly damaged by the strike and the Sosa/McGwire theatrics helped to revive the sport. Even if there were suspicions at the time you have to wonder how vigorously they would have been pursued. Can you imagine what the fallout would have been if Selig would have suspended both players?

Costas is great but did anyone seriously expect him to go Mike Wallace on McGwire on the MLB network?

Richard Y said...

This may have been explained before but what happens in the record books? Do the homers still count but now with an '*' by his name and number indicating that this was acomplished on drugs? And if so - THEY DON'T COUNT!!!! All these guys that were on steroids should be removed from the books.

Anonymous said...

This just reinforces my long-term opinion that Maris works best is an off-stage role.

vw: boact - the one thing Bo can't do

charlotte said...

[quote]Tom Hanks’ line in LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN was wrong. “There is nothing BUT crying in baseball.”[/quote]

LOL! Classic!

Bob said...

This reminds me so much of the Pete Rose debacle. For years people said, "Just come clean and fans will forgive". He did, and it wasn't good enough for the writers and the celebrity haters. Mark is seeing the same. Everyone whined that he had to come confress. He has and now article after article is barbecuing him today.

I've never understood the pleasure that people get out of berating someone. I understand the reasons sometimes but not the pleasure. In this case you have a lot of sports writers who are frustrated that they couldn't make a go of it as an athlete. So they wait with baited breath and slam any and every weakness they can find in people who succeeded in the profession they wanted.

David K. M. Klaus said...

I'm a crappy athlete and I wish him the best in honest personal success. I envy his ability but am not jealous of it.

What makes me angry is that he was my son's very first real-life hero, and he became so by cheating. What does that say to my son and other kids who held him in such unbridled admiration?

I'll stick with Neal Armstrong, who with Buzz Aldrin literally went where no man had gone before, took over manually when the automatic landing systems of the Lunar Module were about to put him down into a boulder field, flew it like a helicopter over the boulders and a deep crater, and safely put it down on the Moon with only twelve seconds of fuel remaining, saving himself, Dr. Aldrin, the Eagle lander, and the entire lunar program in one magnificent moment.

brandon knight said...

I think its very selfish and transparent why McGwire finally came forward and admitted his steroid use. Does any really believe his claims that steroids didnt improve his performance?