The Baseball Writers Association of America has just released the Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2014.
Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and Frank Thomas all made the cut as first ballot inductees. In not so lucky news, Jack Morris missed on his last chance until the expansion era committee in three years and Craig Biggio missed by two votes. The Performance Enhancing Drugs clan was in full force and going in the wrong direction. If they are going to get in then it will be a lot like climbing Mt. Everest without a jacket or boots in the middle of winter.
What to do with PED users is the immortal debate for the writers and the fans of the game? The fans are split with some wanting the players in, some wanting them in with an asterisk while others simply want a functional way ahead. Think of it like men picking out clothes. Some want fashion; some want fashion if it’s cheap while others just want elastic that will hold their sweatpants up.
Then there is the BBWAA with their anointed presence as the judge, jury and executioner for every Hall of Fame eligible player. After all they use a tried and true metric system to ensure all players with Hall of Fame caliber careers get in. Nope that’s not it. Oh that’s right they use a mix of insight, personal satisfaction or distain and statistical bars to decide who is welcome. But they all must be on the same page with the aforementioned criteria right? Nope not it either. Now I remember, it is januis clausis where everyone’s fate is decided. And in numerous cases it’s members who can recall when color television was new that decide the fate of the current players. It’s not the same era. It’s not the same culture and the same rules no longer apply. Its anarchy and it needs a home.
How can you help define the apparent tomfoolery in the BBWAA’s current voting system? There is no consensus, there is no modern wing, there is no asterisk, there is no change in culture and there is no hope for many of the PED era. Yet all of the voters expect to wake up and see a transformed world. This isn’t “Revenge of the Fallen” and no matter how much the writers want, Optimus Prime will not save the day. They need to be Optimus Prime to the PED eras Deceptacons.
They number in the 10s, they have feelings and they deserve a home as well. But what do we do with the players that have been suspended under the MLB Performance Enhancing Drug Program? What about the group of players with a tornado of PED suspicion around them? And what should be done with the group who has been subject of all those tainted tests? Light bulb! Enter the Performance Enhancing Drugs Hall of Fame. Heck it even has a catchy motto, “Where cheaters win!”
But who would enter the hallowed alleys of such an unscrupulous establishment? It is tough to choose but we need some rules, eligibility criteria if you will. Let’s go with this, first you must have either tested positive, been suspended because of “evidence” or have a former government employee call you out in a report, a special report whose name eludes but you know what I talking about. Second, you cannot currently be on the active 40 man roster of any Major League Baseball team. Look at it this way, you do not have to wait six years but you have to be out of work. Yep, I think that will do just fine.
Now that we have the requirements for induction into the PED Hall of Fame we need an inaugural class. A group of individuals that led the way in the “balls go far” era of baseball and personified all that it stood for. We owe them all a debt of gratitude. They brought the game back from the abyss. They knew we weren’t smart enough to catch on. Who are we to judge them? They are the few, the proud and the artificially enhanced. Let’s look at the inaugural class.