Thursday, August 16, 2012

Melky Cabrera Suspension Just The Last In A Long Line Of Giants Transgressions

That's a sad milkman.

Sure, we took our lumps when Manny Ramirez was suspended for fifty games back in 2009 (a year where we still made it to the NLCS and finished first in our division). But Melky Cabrera's own 50-game suspension today only further perpetuates the long-standing tradition of steroid-taking Giants, as documented by the SF Comical's own Bruce Jenkins:

It's also time to consider the Giants' image - that is to say, rotten - when it comes to such tawdry issues.

Barry Bonds was at the core of the BALCO scandal, surrounding a federal government investigation into steroids in 2002, and will most likely be kept out of the Hall of Fame when he becomes eligible this winter. His name is so irrevocably attached to steroid use - during the period of his record-breaking home run feats for the Giants - that he may never be enshrined.

The Giants took a chance two years ago when they signed pitcher Guillermo Mota, who had been suspended 50 games for a positive drug test in 2006, and he became a repeat offender under their watch, drawing a 100-game suspension in May. Similarly, Hensley had a blemish on his record before joining the Giants, having been suspended 15 games for using performance-enhancing substances in 2005 while a minor leaguer in the San Diego Padres' system.

The Giants were hammered in the Mitchell Report, the result of a comprehensive investigation released in 2007. The circumstances and allegations varied, but the report's 89-player list included Bonds, Marvin Benard, Bobby Estalella, Benito Santiago, Armando Rios and Matt Herges for alleged transgressions during their stints with the Giants. Two other players linked to the Mitchell Report, Jose Guillen and Miguel Tejada, were signed by the Giants in recent years with full knowledge of their past.

74 suspensions

It's not that the Giants represent some wretched island of sin. There have been 74 suspensions related to performance-enhancing drugs in baseball this year alone - 70 of them in the minor leagues. But Cabrera's is by far the most significant, and it might surpass Manny Ramirez's 50-game suspension in 2009 (with the Dodgers) as the most damaging to his team.

Again, the Dodgers still charged to the top even with the Ramirez absence. The Giants could do the same. But Ramirez was taken out early (May 7), not in the stretch run. So let's see if this 2012 race dynamic changes now that Cabrera has left the building.

(And yes, the Giants do indeed represent a wretched island of sin.)


Fred's Brim said...

a wretched peninsula of sin?

Fred's Brim said...

what are the chances Uribe took chemical advantage of his time in SF?

Mr. LA Sports Czar said...

You mean...high-fructose corn syrup?

Alex said...

nerve tonic?

Alex said...