Damn the Mitchell report

The agent is not the problem
Yanks to offer Bruney a contract

After reading this article on ESPN.com, my feelings towards the Mitchell report have gotten worse, if that’s at all possible. I’ll excerpt some quotes of note:

From a coach (all of the sources here are unnamed, for obvious reasons):

“They wanted us to speculate. And I wouldn’t do that. They wanted me to say who I thought was using steroids. And when I said, ‘I don’t know,’ they would say, ‘Well, you work most closely with these guys. You work on their bodies every day. You weren’t the least bit suspicious when you saw their bodies change?’

“This was the kind of stuff I was most afraid of, because they didn’t ask me about specific people with specific information that they had. They asked me to guess. I said my guess was no guess at all, because what would happen to me if I said a guy was using steroids who wasn’t? What if I guessed wrong? Then my name is out there, I get fired, and I’m easily replaceable.”

Why are they asking people to guess?

“They didn’t ask us those things because they didn’t have the level of sophistication about what we do,” said a National League strength coach. “They didn’t know the right questions to ask. At no point in my interview did anyone say to me, ‘What can we recommend to make sure this never happens again?'”

Uh, wasn’t the whole point of the investigation to figure out how to never let this happen again? Oh, my mistake. I forgot that it was a witch hunt to bring out the biggest names in baseball.

“I didn’t go in there with a lawyer because I didn’t have anything to hide,” the manager said. “They asked me if I’d ever seen anyone do steroids. I said no. They asked me how I thought the players’ bodies got so big, and I said the players were in the weight room day and night, so it made sense to me. Then he said to me, ‘Well, don’t you know that steroids combined with weightlifting can make you even bigger?’ He said it to me like I was dumb, so I said, ‘No, I didn’t know that.'”

Wow. I didn’t know that! Pass the bull testosterone, yo!

Oh, and don’t forget Mr. Mitchell’s status on the board of directors of the Red Sox. The following is an excerpt from an e-mail sent by John Clarke, a spokesman for DLA Piper, the law firm conducting the investigation.

“Senator Mitchell and the Red Sox have agreed that he would not provide advice to the Red Sox owners until this investigation is completed and he would not receive any compensation from the team. That is the current situation,” Clarke wrote in a Nov. 30 e-mail to ESPN.com. “It is the expectation of the Senator and the Red Sox that he will resume his previous role after the completion of the investigation.”

Oh, then never mind! It’s all cool. He didn’t advise or take money while the investigation was ongoing. That he did those things before the investigation, and plans to continue doing so after the investigation, means nothing, right?

At least one GM is speaking out against this:

“They expected everyone to believe what they say, but they didn’t do anything real to change anybody’s mind. It was just his word,” one general manager said of Mitchell and his investigators. “They think everybody is stupid. They really do.”

So instead of figuring out how to stop this, they’re trying to levy blame on anyone they can. Thanks, Mitchell and Company. I’ll rest easier knowing that you compiled a list of names that people guessed at.

Honestly, I think this report is going to do a lot more to hurt baseball than to help it.

On a related note, I betcha a fiver that A-Rod‘s name is somewhere in the Mitchell report. And I betcha that there’s a token Red Sox reference, but nothing of substance. (And I’m not saying A-Rod because he’s a Yankee, but rather because he’s a big name, and including him would seem to fit Mitchell’s M.O.)

The agent is not the problem
Yanks to offer Bruney a contract
  • Bo

    I’m going to go out on a limb and say there are zero Red Sox players in the report.

  • It’sMeSNITCHES!!!

    Is this whole Mitchell report/investigation tax-payer funded?

    • http://www.nyyank.com/ Yankee Fan

      I don’t think so since, Mitchell is no longer serving as Senator

  • E-ROC

    Witch hunt. “Guess” can get u f#cked up. They’ve gotta have something better than a guess as their evidence. Thursday could be an MLB Massacre. So much for that unbias independent investigation. Mr Selig, where are u? I wonder what they asked Giambi.

  • Bo

    Another dumb Selig move.

    The public doesn’t care!

    We know 75% of athletes are on something. We are smart enough to hold our own grudges and get over it. There is no need for some BS report about something everyone knows.

    You don’t see the NFL doing dumb things like this and you cant play pro football now if you aren’t on performance enhancers.

    Unless you believe that 330lb men can run sub 5 40’s.

  • It’sMeSNITCHES!!!

    The Mitchell Report bullshit is a nice little distraction isn’t it? Ballplayers using some drugs is the problem, but not the gov’t funded Blackwater mercenaries on roids shooting up Iraqis. Who is the government kidding here? This is an issue for MLB and MLB alone.

  • ceciguante

    as a lawyer, i am convinced that mitchell’s position on the board of the red sox never would have withstood the scrutiny of a conflict of interest check for purposes of a legal representation. if this investigation was being performed for for a prospective client, he would have been eliminated from consideration as soon as his red sox affiliation was discovered. the fact that he intends to continue in his role on the red sox BOD after completion of the investigation only reaffirms that his interests are implicated by this investigation, and never should have been permitted. for that reason alone, this whole project was flawed from the outset. but it may yet accomplish it’s PR objectives.

    “witch hunt” is right. but i agree that there will be some token red sox reference(s), just for the appearance of impartiality. i doubt the senator would be so foolish as to omit that. (would he?)

    • Motown Yankee Fan

      I completely agree. Despite his protestations to the contrary, the mere appearance of impropriety here will forever taint this investigation and its results. Was there no other learned statesman (or woman) who could have conducted this investigation? Presumably there are a number of baseball fans in our country who also have the legal chops to undertake the investigation. I can think of a number in my law firm alone.

      Those ESPN quotes are troubling. Witchhunt indeed.

      • It’sMeSNITCHES!!!

        Ralph Nader would actually be a wise choice. However, I doubt he’d want to waste his time on this nonsense.

        • Kevin23

          Just to provide context: they are investigating here. Cops do this all the time to gather leads. It doesn’t stand up in court, obviously, but it can put them on the right track to finding real evidence.

  • bill

    So this is going to turn into yet another suckoff fest for the red sox…… this yankee fan is so happy

    • Whitey14

      The Red Sox didn’t appoint Mitchell to do the report, MLB did. Make sure you focus your ire in the right direction. I agree there’s a conflict of interest here, but the Red Sox didn’t create it. Hopefully Mr. Mitchell has truly been carrying out an independant investigation, but I have serious problems trusting Democrats to do anything right.

      • yankz

        This isn’t the place for your political bullshit.

        • Whitey14

          It’s not the place for your immature need to swear either. How about you grow up there Sparky!

          • MikeD

            I agree with Sparky, keep your politics to yourself, no one cares.

            • Whitey14

              The Democrat comment was just a joke, maybe I’ll root for the yankees to win this year so you guys will loosen up a bit. At any rate, people can keep their curses to themselves too. There are younger fans that come here and they don’t need to be reading that stuff. If people can’t express themselves without cursing it’s probably time they stopped paying somebody to log them onto the computer to begin with.

  • MikeD

    I couldn’t care less about the report. I hope every single player on the Yankees appears. If there’s an edge out there I want my team to take advantage.

    • It’sMeSNITCHES!!!

      You can’t be serious.

  • MikeD

    Well the statement is a bit extreme.

    But the truth of the matter is, I really don’t care if a player did steroids or not. I want to see baseball played at the highest level possible. How the players make that happen is their concern.

  • It’sMeSNITCHES!!!

    Just some food for thought. Isn’t a cortisone shot a performance-enhancing drug? Should Schilling’s ankle be served a summons?

  • MikeD

    Yeah but that one’s allowed.

    Interestingly enough oxygen (in high doses) is one of the strongest performance enhancing drugs around. I’m thinking they aren’t going to ban that one.

    It really is arbitrary line.

  • mehmattski

    Have you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Communist party?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Joseph P.

      Totally just snarfed my drink.

  • It’sMeSNITCHES!!!

    Elia Kazan & Jose Canseco – Shame on them.

    • LiveFromNewYork

      Kazan was a rat. Consesco was a rat.

  • barry

    A-Rod is no where near big enough to be using roids. I hate this type of stuff for a couple of reasons. Mostly because its unnecessary, these guys used steriods they aren’t like every player in the NFL shooting up titty bars and crashing lambos. Sure Steroids need to stop but don’t ruin

    • MikeD

      Your right.

      You need to have been super huge like Paul Byrd to get busted.

      • dan

        No, you have to be a slap-hitting sprinter like Alex Gonzalez or an expectant mother like Marion Jones. Which just made me think of something… what’s gonna happen to her baby as a result of the ‘roids she was on? or was she not on them while pregnant?

        • dan

          and by gonzalez, I of course mean sanchez

  • Kevin23

    This whole “investigation” has been a dog and pony show from the start. Everyone knew years ago that no one was going to talk. After Jose wrote his book and got blasted for it (never mind that it has all been proven true since), it has been one slow realization that a whole lot of stuff happened involving a whole lot of people, and no one is going to talk about it. And for good reason. Screw the “integrity of the game” when your ass is on the line for doing what everyone else did.

    Put an asterisk over the whole era and be done with it. And start testing players’ blood for god’s sake! If we’re going to test, then test like they do in the Olympics. Otherwise, we’re just going to keep catching dumb-ass no-name kids whove yet to meet the good dealers.

  • ArchStanton

    Well, I’m going to expose myself here as somewhat of a wrestling fan, but I read that in a similar investigation involving pro wrestlers, the wrestlers were surprised by how knowledgeable the investigators were, both about their business and the use of performance enhancing drugs.

  • Back Bay Yankee

    MITCHELL REPORT FINDINGS REVEALED — The much anticipated Mitchell report was revealed today with great fanfare in Kenmore Square, home of historic Fenway Park. The report, weighing in at a hefty 540 pages revealed the controversial allegation that the Yankee dynasty of 1996-2000 consisted entirely of lumps of anabolic steroids clumsily shaped into rough approximations of human form. According to one source close to the investigation, “in the aftermath of the 2001 World Series, the Yankee roster had dried out so severely that further play would have been impossible without the development of the groundbreaking steroid converter, which was used to slowly reconstitute members of the team ahead of the 2002 season.” According to another highly-placed source, the unconverted steroids were used to form Jason Giambi and, later, Carl Pavano’s shoulder, elbow and buttocks. The converter is detailed on page 473, along with a stunning artist’s interpretation of Brian Cashman’s skull pit and corpse tube. Although no concrete evidence was obtained by investigators–many of whom had tiny explosive devices planted in their brains ahead of Yankee interviews–suspicions that Alex Rodriguez is in fact an early model terminator have been confirmed by Peter Gammons. Investigators declined to comment, pointing at their sutured skulls and mouthing the word “kablooie!”

    • barry

      got a lot of free time?

      • http://deleted Back Bay Yankee

        Took me about five minutes to hammer that out, but that’s the joy of a liberal arts education.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Joseph P.

      “suspicions that Alex Rodriguez is in fact an early model terminator have been confirmed by Peter Gammons.”

      Line of the day?

  • Jeff

    As Giambi got screwed for saying… it was part of the game… get over it… move on… nobody gives a damn.
    I think it’s the very few people like Bob Costas that want to look at these old records and say baseball is ruined because guys are doing things now that weren’t possible in the past. Sure I can agree that steroids must have a significant effect of power numbers but I think year round training and the effort players put into being their best does alot more.
    I also think some pitchers were on the juice as well. When Clemens thew the bat at the Met-pussyboy – roid-rage jumped to mind.
    In the end though once this report is out and done with I hope we don’t hear about this every other week in the media. Its so ridicuosly unimportant.

    One more thing – I don’t think baseball should be stolen from Bonds – no matter how much of a jerk he is – he deserves the right to keep playing.

  • waswhining

    60 to 80 former and current players said espn…

    • dan

      I like the name… it’s up there with Giuseppe Franco among my favorites here. Now if only I knew what Count Zero meant….

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Joseph P.

        It’s a sci-fi novel. Also the main character in said novel.

  • Grant

    Iraq War, Global Terror, Groiwing Poverty, 45 million Americans with no health insurrance, Crime, Undocumented/Illegal Immigration, Potential Constitutional Violations by this administration, The errosion of the American Middle Class, Russia, Pakistan, Iran, North Korea…


    • barry

      hes a typical senator milking the system. Anyone else wondering why these guys make more money than any respectable blue collar worker just to wokr less in a year than a teacher, or in that case, a college student?

    • Pete

      While I agree with the general sentiment that this is a waste of America’s time, Senator Mitchell is a FORMER Senator. Therefore he can’t really tackle issues like poverty or the Iraq War head on.

      But there are plenty of former politicians doing that already (Newt Gingrich and Jimmy Carter, to just name a few or the 9/11 Commission as another example). So if one former Senator wants to investigate Major League Baseball, its not the worst thing.

      But yes, there are other more pressing matters that can be investigated.

  • future man

    posted on lohud too – I’m to lazy to write something new: I’ve recently come to to the conclusion that I don’t care about steroids. I am a traditionalist in a lot of ways: didn’t like the wild card (though I’ve come around), think the home field/all star game thing is a joke, etc. But they all do it, if done under the care of an (honest) physician it’s safe, and no matter how strong you are you still have to hit the ball. Do I love steroids in pro sports? No. But it’s a reality, and to me is much closer to Tommy John surgery than a corked bat. Science advances, performance advances, deal with it. The tests will never keep up with the drug so it’s futile to fight it. Regulate how you see fit and let’s move on.

  • Steve S

    Whats more interesting about that article is how Bud Selig has really bent over backwards for the Red Sox ownership since 2001 and the thinly veiled curtain that is hiding some strange dealings/transactions involving Selig, Henry, Luchino, Loria, and Werner. We all knew the Red Sox/Marlins/Expos deal was somewhat shady but this is the first writer who had the guts to really stand up and say something on this large of a forum. And its like I said about Schilling and the awards. If people like Selig and baseball want to be sanctimonious about baseball and maintaining integrity then they have to do a better job of maintaining the appearance of their own integrity.

  • A-Point

    If this report does not contain specific information on how they came to the names they are listing, then I smell a field day for the lawyers.

    To publish this report and possibly tainting the names of players and NOT have the evidence to back it up in court will see Mitchell in court. I would think that he will need his job with the Red Sox then, as he will be spending a fortune on all the suits brought against him.

    • Kevin23

      I’m certain Mitchell knows what constitutes libel and defamation causes of action. I highly doubt he’ll write anything which can be shown to have been written with both knowledge of falsity and reckless disregard for the truth. And just because someone might accuse him of that, doesn’t mean they don’t have to make an argument based on evidence in order to not get their case summarily dismissed. Lets think practically for a second.

      All this is meant to do is show that baseball did something. They tried. Pity them. The report will say absolutely nothing of relevant substance, and will provide zero original insight as to how to solve problems going forward. It’ll simply say that we need government to get involved. Oh tax dollars, is there no problem you can’t fix by simply being thrown at it? The real winner here will be whoever gets the fat government contracts to develop, administer and audit the token system they’ll set up. And it’ll still be flawed. Sigh.

      • Steve S

        I think everyone has to realize the difficulty of a libel or slander suit when you are dealing with a public figure. The reality is that celebrities (unless your Johnny Carson) don’t often like to get involved because there is a higher burden of proof. Not to mention the fact that any action wouldnt be against Mitchell alone, in reality they would have to sue Mitchell and MLB (as he is acting as an agent of MLB/Selig). Then we get into the problem of actually proving damages, another obstacle for public figures which might be difficult when guys like Jose Guillen and Mota are getting the offers they are getting. And by the way everyone of these guys would fall into the category of public figure.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    and who might be the lucky team to sign him?

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