BY SPNW Staff 12:06PM 04/12/2012

MLB Players Exec Argues For Drug Cheats In HOF

MLB union chief Michael Weiner stirred the debate over whether accused steroid users belong in the Hall of Fame. Owners who broke laws are in, why not players? Vote here.

Former slugger Mark McGwire has fallen far short of receiving the votes necessary for Hall of Fame induction due to his steroid use. / Wiki Commons

Michael Weiner, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, told the National Press Club (Washington, D.C.) Wednesday that steroid use shouldn’t keep baseball’s best sluggers and pitchers out of the Hall of Fame, arguing that the Hall of Fame, “is for the best baseball players that have ever played.”

Weiner also said he thinks Pete Rose should be in the Hall despite Rose’s history of gambling — just as team executives aren’t barred from induction for engaging in collusion against the players in the 1980s.

“It’s a museum,” Weiner said. “If you want to have some notation on their plaque that indicates that they were either judged to have used performance enhancing substances or accused of having done that, so be it.

“There will be people in the Hall of Fame who have been judged by several arbitrators to have engaged in a massive conspiracy called collusion to defraud the fans of free competition,” Weiner continued.

“Those people belong in the Hall of Fame as well. So, from my perspective, the Hall of Fame is for the best baseball players and most influential executives that have been involved, and they should all be in.”

Mark McGwire and Rafael Palmeiro are two of the most prominent names from baseball’s steroids era. Both have fallen considerably short of earning enough votes for the Hall of Fame despite career statistics that would otherwise have made them shoo-ins.

Roger Clemens, a 300-game winner and seven-time Cy Young winner who is eligible for Hall of Fame induction in 2013, goes on trial next week on charges he lied to Congress when he denied using steroids and human growth hormone.

Many members of the Baseball Writers Association of America have written that they will never vote to induct any player or pitcher into the Hall of Fame who has admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs. Others BBWAA members are conflicted over the issue, preferring to reserve judgment.

Former San Francisco slugger Barry Bonds has never admitted to using performance enhancers, only that he never “knowingly” used them. Former Mariner Alex Rodriguez, one of the great players of all time, admitted more than a year ago that he used steroids earlier in his career.


YourThoughts

  • RadioGuy

    I’m not as bothered about players who used steroids as I am those who threw games, or at least gambled on them.  To me, the arguments for keeping Joe Jackson and Pete Rose out of Cooperstown are stronger than arguments for keeping Mark McGwire or Roger Clemens out.  By the way, if McGwire homered and struck out in two at-bats against Clemens in a game, should we start cranking out asterisks on a labelmaker?

    SInce we’re on the topic of the Hall of Fame, there’s a former Mariner who MAY deserve some future consideration for enshrinement ahead of Edgar Martinez:  Omar Vizquel.  Sounds crazy at first blush, I know, but Little O entered this season with 2,841 hits, 451 doubles, 401 stolen bases and 1433 runs scored during his career, plus there’s that matter of 11 Gold Gloves and a .985 fielding percentage, both second best all-time behind Ozzie Smith.  Feel free to find shortstops already in the HOF with better career numbers than that.

  • RadioGuy

    I’m not as bothered about players who used steroids as I am those who threw games, or at least gambled on them.  To me, the arguments for keeping Joe Jackson and Pete Rose out of Cooperstown are stronger than arguments for keeping Mark McGwire or Roger Clemens out.  By the way, if McGwire homered and struck out in two at-bats against Clemens in a game, should we start cranking out asterisks on a labelmaker?

    SInce we’re on the topic of the Hall of Fame, there’s a former Mariner who MAY deserve some future consideration for enshrinement ahead of Edgar Martinez:  Omar Vizquel.  Sounds crazy at first blush, I know, but Little O entered this season with 2,841 hits, 451 doubles, 401 stolen bases and 1433 runs scored during his career, plus there’s that matter of 11 Gold Gloves and a .985 fielding percentage, both second best all-time behind Ozzie Smith.  Feel free to find shortstops already in the HOF with better career numbers than that.

  • John

    As someone who grew up watching Bonds, I feel these guys deserve a place.  Bonds was arguably the best player in the history of baseball (ready for the angry response for that statement).  I say steroids don’t help you make contact with the ball.  And who knows what players were doing before drug testing was common?

  • John

    As someone who grew up watching Bonds, I feel these guys deserve a place.  Bonds was arguably the best player in the history of baseball (ready for the angry response for that statement).  I say steroids don’t help you make contact with the ball.  And who knows what players were doing before drug testing was common?

  • Tian Biao

    I’ve never agreed with the ‘steroids don’t help you make contact with the ball’ argument. it’s true, they don’t, but they make the ball fly one heck of a lot further once contact is made. So without the steroids, those balls die on the warning track. i just don’t understand how that is an argument.

  • Tian Biao

    I’ve never agreed with the ‘steroids don’t help you make contact with the ball’ argument. it’s true, they don’t, but they make the ball fly one heck of a lot further once contact is made. So without the steroids, those balls die on the warning track. i just don’t understand how that is an argument.

  • Hammtime

    No.

  • Hammtime

    No.

  • Hammtime

    1) Ok, maybe steriods doesn’t make you better at making contact but as others have pointed out you can hit the ball a lot farther and can wait longer since you will have more batspeed. The notion that steriods doesn’t make you a better ballplayer is crap. If it were so true why would anyone risk their health to take them? Clearly these players thought it would make them better somehow! To hear others claim it doesn’t make them any better then I ask, “Why did you take them?” duh…

    2) What message would it send to our kids and others if steriod users and other PED users are allowed into the Hall? It’s ok to cheat so go ahead and do it!

  • Hammtime

    1) Ok, maybe steriods doesn’t make you better at making contact but as others have pointed out you can hit the ball a lot farther and can wait longer since you will have more batspeed. The notion that steriods doesn’t make you a better ballplayer is crap. If it were so true why would anyone risk their health to take them? Clearly these players thought it would make them better somehow! To hear others claim it doesn’t make them any better then I ask, “Why did you take them?” duh…

    2) What message would it send to our kids and others if steriod users and other PED users are allowed into the Hall? It’s ok to cheat so go ahead and do it!