McGwire gave his long-awaited admission to using steroids throughout the 90s, including during his record-breaking season of 1998. His remorseful statements were torn apart by most in the media, who ripped Big Mac for trying to play the victim. However, my view couldn’t be more different…
Even though it took the former home run king over five years to, “talk about the past,” and didn’t give his confession until his attempt to get back into baseball all but choked it out of him, McGwire should be welcomed back in baseball with open arms. Namely, by electing him to the baseball Hall of Fame.
Yeah, I said it – despite the fact that McGwire was a steroid user in, shocker, the steroid era, he almost single-handedly healed baseball of the black eye it suffered at the hands of the 1994 player strike. He also finished with 583 home runs and hit a home run every 10.6 at-bats, a record in every era. He also ranks 9th all-time in slugging percentage at .588 and 11th all-time in OPS at .982.
He is a statistical no-brainer and while I’m not quite making a, “truth will set you free,” argument, I do believe that, in the eyes of the Hall of Fame, you can be either a liar or a cheater, but not both. This is precisely why all the famous spit-ballers sit comfortably in the hall while “suspected” steroid abusers continue to be punchlines of jokes around the world. In terms of steroids, players like David Ortiz, Jason Giambi, and A-Rod, as fake and rehearsed as they were, still were able to throw some cheese to the media mice (albeit swiss cheese). In the process, while they still take the occasional jab, they have been forgiven of their transgressions in the court of public opinion on one level or another.
Meanwhile, morons like Sammy Sosa, Rafael Palmiero, Barry Bonds, etc., should fire their publicists or anyone else for suggesting they keep their collective lips sealed despite the obvious nature of the evidence against them. For the trouble, they will all be shunned on election day until they see McGwire get his due, then they will all be running to the microphone faster than you can say androstenedione.