Gentleman, start the gnashing of teeth and the rending of garments! One of the purest and most honest baseball players of the past twenty-five years has been fingered as a user of illegal substances! The New York Times reported that Sammy Sosa was one of the notorious 104 players who failed a drug test in 2003. This revelation gives sanctimonious beat writers a solid excuse to not give Sosa a Hall of Fame vote in 2013 and, even worse, gives the feds a chance to prosecute the living hell out of a guy who once proclaimed in front of Congress that he never took PEDs.
He was a great hitter and an ambassador for the game during a time when baseball needed it most. But my opinion on Sammy Sosa is not important, folks. Let's hear some reactions from around the league, because honestly, I'll never know what to think until I hear baseball managers and players opine on the matter when they'd rather be worrying about, you know, actual baseball games:
The always colorful Ozzie Guillen is saddened by the news and just wants to rip the Band-Aid right off in one fell swoop so it doesn't hurt so bad:
"And we should be over the hump, out of this situation. We got enough time to clean this thing. But We're not going to clean this thing, day by day, name by name, month by month. Whoever is out there, get the names out, deal with it, and baseball will continue to be the same. Some people will be upset, some people will be disappointed. They're not going to stop the game. That's the best thing for baseball. Every time you hear names. Now it's no surprise. When you hear somebody's name you say (sarcastically), 'that's a shocker?' "
Former Rangers teammate and current Angels reliever Darren Oliver isn't mincing words:
"Better him than me. He's the one who has to deal with it. It seems like if you are caught with this, you can kiss the Hall of Fame goodbye."
This just in: Darren Oliver has tested positive for Ensure. Oh well! No Hall of Fame for you, journeyman pitcher!
Fellow countryman Octavio Dotel doesn't want to be guilty by association, yet backs up Sammy with the classic Manny Ramirez defense:
"Yes, because he's one of our leaders in the Dominican," Dotel said. "But one thing I say - everyone makes mistakes. He didn't kill nobody. He did it, a little tough mistake. But life, you got to keep going. Nothing surprises me at this point, this time, about this kind of stuff."
And to end with a flourish, Meech at the The Fightins brings us the money quote from Sweet Lou Piniella:
Lou wouldn't know a steroid from a reefer? Neither would I, because I wasn't a fast-talking career gal in the 1930s.