Saturday, February 26, 2005
Canseco receiving death threats over "Juiced."
Once upon a time Jose Canseco was my hero - he was the sole reason I became interested in baseball and started following my hometown team, the Oakland A's.
It's sad to see that he's become a caricature of himself. A once larger-than life athlete is now a larger-than life tabloid story. The man has serious issues: a bad case of myopia, jealousy, anger and a desperate need for the limelight. All that aside, there has to be some truth to what he's saying regarding the use of steroids in baseball - he is the expert, after all.
Remember true believers, two things can be equally true. Just because Jose Canseco has questionable character, doesn't mean that some of his teammates didn't take steroids. For example, just because the L.A.P.D. did a lousy job handling the case of the murders of Nicole Brown and Ronald Goldman, and detective Mark Fuhrman was a racist, doesn't mean O.J. Simpson didn't kill two people. For goodness sakes, their blood was found inside O.J.'s Ford Bronco. Do we have to find a steroid needle sticking out of Barry Bonds' butt cheek to suspect him?
The mistake he made was to call people out. McGwire. Giambi. Palmero. Gonzalez. Rodriguez. Clemens. Now somewhere some big guys were hired to put the hurt and maybe a hit on Canseco's life. What he did to his fellow players wasn't cool. But threatening his life for trying to shed light on a deep, dark secret is even more appauling. Maybe baseball didn't call for the threats, but I'm sure it doesn't mind that someone out there is trying to silence Canseco.
Someday, somehow Canseco may be viewed as a tragic hero - a Darth Vader-type guy that had to become a monster in order to slay the larger moster that is cheating in baseball. Time - and history - will tell. Maybe someday I can look at Canseco in a different light, but it will never be like the summer that I fell in love with the game of baseball. If nothing else, the man introduced me to a wonderful sport.