Quelle Horreur! Our pal Emma defends Alex Rodriguez:
In the wake of the Biogenesis clinic scandal, Major League Baseball would plainly love to see Alex Rodriguez ride off into the sunset. And lord knows the Yankees would like to get out of the massive payments they owe their injured and PED-tainted albatross. There’s just one small problem: The evidence simply isn’t there, at least not yet. Maybe you believe that’s because it never existed; maybe you believe Rodriguez paid to have it destroyed, as “sources familiar with MLB’s investigation” have told ESPN. Either way, though, that means Rodriguez is probably not going away any time soon. Which means we — me, you, the media, the Yankees, the league — are going to have to make some sort of peace with his continued presence in the game, or risk going completely insane.
Given all that, the battle that Major League Baseball is waging against Alex Rodriguez — its own star, and not so long ago one of its most marketable — is, if not quite unprecedented, still fairly astounding. Some obvious comparisons leap to mind: Pete Rose, of course, and Shoeless Joe Jackson, who were each banned from the game. Yet neither hung around for years being loathed before their sentences were handed down, and both have plenty of defenders, even now. By the end of his career, MLB was none too fond of Barry Bonds, who felt (not without reason) that he was being blacklisted and forced into retirement; other PED users have also gotten a cold shoulder, but some, like Mark McGwire and Jason Giambi, have been forgiven. And Bonds and A-Rod’s fellow Biogenesis-linked bête noir Ryan Braun at least has a home team and fanbase that appreciates and enjoys him.
The same cannot be said of Rodriguez. It has been suggested that he should be banned from baseball, that he should be arrested, that he should be sued — just about everything short of Yankees general manager Brian Cashman killing him and making it look like an accident for the insurance money, and a poll would probably find some fans supporting that, too. There’s so much piling on, it’s almost enough to make you take the unnatural step of defending the guy.