By The Common Man
Let The Common Man preface this by saying that he loves George Brett. Brett was a tremendous player who led some really good Royals teams in the late 1970s and 1980s. He is almost certainly one of the top 5 third basemen of all time (and you know how we love third basemen around here). Well deserving of all the honors and privileges that come with being an all-time great.
But maybe George Brett should have, in this instance, shut the hell up instead of saying “guys in the 500-home run club, guys like Schmitty (Mike Schmidt) and some other guys like that, if those guys [“PE”D users] make it in then they’ll…never go back and attend (the Hall of Fame inductions) if the cheaters get elected.” Because, as we’ve pointed out here repeatedly, virtually everyone who has played since the mid-80s has played with steroid users. This includes George Brett (Wally Joyner and Phil Hyatt, if you’re interested). Steroid use in baseball dates back to Brett’s heyday in the 1970s. And there’s an excellent chance that someone has been enshrined in the Hall of Fame who used illegal drugs designed to help them play better. And as Craig Calcaterra pointed out this morning, it’s Mike Schmidt actually believes the exact opposite of what Brett alleges.
Hell, we know that dozens of Hall of Famers, including Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and Mickey Mantle, used amphetamines in their careers specifically so they could play better. It wasn’t against the rules, necessarily (much like steroids weren’t against the rules for much of the so-called steroid era), but the intent and the form is essentially the same.
What’s more, cheaters are most certainly in the Hall of Fame. John McGraw, King Kelly, Whitey Ford, Leo Durocher, and Gaylord Perry all cheated. Hall of Famers, every one.
So again, George Brett. We love you. You’re a worthy Hall of Famer. But stop pretending that you’re not in a club that let’s in any criminal, racist, degenerate, cheating jerkwad who was good at baseball but who didn’t bet on the game.