I’m not sure what I was expecting at A-Rod’s presser today. Maybe I thought he would be forthright; maybe I hoped he would be genuine.
Sadly, I don’t think he was either.
Instead, Mr. Rodriguez glossed over many of the questions he was asked, leaving much unanswered and much more to be desired. On an afternoon where he could have ended this story, he instead may have opened it even wider. To the quotes! (from SI.com)
“I didn’t think they were steroids. That’s part of being young and stupid. It was over-the-counter. It was really amateur hour. We went outside team doctors, team doctors and team trainers. It was two guys doing a very amateur and immature thing. We probably didn’t even take it right. We used to do it about two times a month and I’m not even sure we did it right to affect us in the right way.
“All these years I never thought I did anything wrong.”
Oh, that’s just pure BS.This is the same crap that Bonds pulled. You mean to tell me that, as a professional athlete, you aren’t aware of what you are putting into your body? You just thought it might be a fun little thing to try? C’mon man – who are you kidding?
On what he thought the benefits were of taking those substances: “I’m not sure. I will say this: When you take any substance, especially in baseball it’s half mental and half physical. If you take this glass of water and say you’ll be a better baseball player, you probably will be. I’d say I felt more energy but it’s hard to say.”
Sure, you took steroids, but they didn’t actually assist your performance. We shouldn’t judge your performance in those years as tainted, because the steroids probably didn’t do much for you. Because, after all, you and your “cousin” barely even knew what you were doing. So, in essence, we shouldn’t condemn you as a steroid user, nor should we condemn your legacy – chances are, the illegal substances you were taking didn’t even do anything.
Asked if he considered taking banned substances to be cheating, Rodriguez said, “That’s not for me to determine. I’m here to say I’m sorry and in some ways I wish I went to college and got an opportunity to grow up at my own pace. I guess when you’re young and stupid you’re young and stupid and I’m guilty of both of those.
“Hey – I missed out on some opportunities. All of you out there, who had a chance to go to college – can’t you sympathize we me? I never had the chance to grow up in college like you did. Wait, what’s that? You’re saying you were going to college so you could make an eighth of what I make in a year? You’re saying that college itself doesn’t make a person more responsible and mature, but living on your own and paying all of your own bills does? And those were things I had to do, at a very young age, as a pro ballplayer? Oh…right.”
Rodriguez says a cousin, whom he would not identify, first introduced him to a substance he referred to as “Boli” that could be purchased in the Dominican Republic and brought to the United States.
“It was his understanding it would give me a dramatic energy boost and was otherwise harmless,” Rodriguez said in a prepared statement before the question and answer portion of his press conference. “My cousin and I, one more ignorant than the other, decided it was a good idea to start taking it. We consulted no one and it was pretty evident that we didn’t know what we were doing. We did everything we could to keep it between us.
Okay. Maybe I’m drifting into conspiracy theory-type thinking here, but I’m not so sure I believe that A-Rod’s “cousin” had anything to do with this. Think about it – for one, it places the source of the substances on somebody close to A-Rod, thereby keeping people from poking holes around other people potentially supplying the substances. In other words, it ensures that the real supplier is never implicated, and if they are, are not tied back to Rodriguez. He’s tying up loose ends – if the source of the drugs is outed, they may give info on other drugs he did to save their own necks. The nameless cousin is a smoke-and-mirror act. Go ahead, journalists, poke around the Dominican Republic if you want – you ain’t gonna get shit.
Because if it really was his cousin, do you think he would ever bring him into it? Would he potentially expose much of his family to the inquiries of the media? Wouldn’t that be a pretty dick move?
Plus, it segues nicely into A-Rod’s whole “we were young and experimenting” argument. If he puts it on his cousin, he makes it seem like they were two young kids messing around with pot or something. Even if he was in his twenties. And, it “explains” why he was never honest about using the drug – he didn’t even know if he was doing something illegal! My goodness, he didn’t know anything about anything! What a poor, lost soul…
I was willing to move on with A-Fraud after today. Instead, I just lost a lot of respect for him. Is he likely trying to avoid other legal troubles? Yeah, probably. But to be so disingenuous…well, it kind of pissed me off. This is all I want:
“Guys, I’m here to say the following: I did do steroids. It was a mistake, something I regret, and I let myself down, I shamed the game, and above all else, I deceived the fans. For that I am the most sorry. I am not going to go on record with what particular drugs I used or who I received them from, but I will say this: I did them for a reason. I thought they would give me more drive with my swing, and that they would help me recover from injury and fatigue more quickly. While I will not say that they were the sole reason for my accomplishments, I would be remiss if I did not acknowlege that they adided my performance. To what degree, I cannot say. At the end of the day, I did something that is not allowed in this game, something that is wrong, and I am extremely sorry for that. Whether or not this will completely taint my repuatation is out of my control; while I hope it will not, I will understand if it does. That’s the risk I took. And one last thing: to any children out there, any aspiring ballplayers – do it right. Reaching your goal is only worthwhile if you do it the right way. Let me tell you – you don’t want to be where I am right now, admitting that you cheated the game you love. A homerun is a homerun, an RBI an RBI. They’re numbers – you forget half of them, anyway. But your dignity? Your self-respect? That, that stays with you for all of your life. Don’t give it away. Learn from my mistake. To all of you out there listening or watching, who all love the game as I do – I am sorry. I made a mistake, one I will regret forever. (This would be a good time for a dramatic, emotional pause. Give yourself…oh, I don’t know – 37 seconds or so.) Thank you for allowing me to make this statement – I am excited about getting the season started, excited about playing ball again with this squad. It should be a very successful season for us, one I am ready get started. Thank you.”