…. Disagreement?

Reading all of the latest “Selig should suspend Bonds” articles, got me thinking, (a scary thought, I know).

…. The government has obtained significant evidence about Bonds and steroids, according to documents and interviews. During the Anderson contempt hearing, federal prosecutors said that in a 2003 raid, they had obtained a “mountain” of documents indicating that Bonds’ trainer had provided banned drugs to elite athletes.

The Chronicle has reported that in 2003 Anderson was secretly recorded while discussing the “undetectable” drugs he was giving to Bonds, and the government now says it too has a copy of that recording.

Both BALCO founder Victor Conte and his vice president, James Valente, told federal investigators in 2003 that Bonds received undetectable steroids from BALCO, although the men later renounced their statements.

Bell, Bonds’ former girlfriend, told the grand jury that in 2000 Bonds told her he was using steroids. And Bonds’ former business manager, Steve Hoskins, has told federal investigators that he has personal knowledge of Bonds’ use of banned drugs, according to Hoskins’ lawyer, Michael Cardoza.

Reading all of this horsehit, here’s something that’s just occurred to me; Selig should suspend Barry Bonds. That’s right, Selig should suspend Bonds. He should invoke the best interests of baseball clause and sit Barry down. Selig feels that Bonds lied to his face, more than once, that Bonds is essentially laughing in his face as he chases Aaron, making a mockery of the game and all of the new drug testing policies. Fine. Be a man, and suspend him.

Sure, the Players Association will appeal the suspension, and almost certainly win the appeal, but why should Selig care about that? Baseball suspends and fines players all the time knowing full well that the appeal proccess will alter or reduce the penalty. Selig should suspend Bonds for 50 games or something like that, and then put the onus on the PA and the arbitrator who will inevitably be brought in to handle the legally bargained process of reviewing whether his actions are defensible or not.

A real commissioner would have already done it. This isn’t Kobe Bryant being accused of rape. This is something directly related to the actual playing of the games; for crying out loud, the poster boy of performance enhancing drugs is trying to pass the all-time home run hitter. This is a big deal, arguably the biggest deal imaginable.

So what’s stopping him from just drawing a line in the sand? It’s simple, really. He’s a used car salesman. He fell into this job, just like he fell into the Brewers. What business success, what true and real accomplishments has Selig had in his life before baseball? He sold used cars.

Not exactly the kind of thing that prepares you for the vagaries of the multi-national, multi-billion dollar a year world enterprise that baseball has become. At this point, with all that’s transpired, with all that we “know” and all that we think we know, Selig should say, “enough” and just suspend him. I don’t agree with Selig on much, and I don’t think he’s even close to the best man for the job, but at least I’d have to respect him for taking a stand on something, anything.

I know I’ve argued that Bonds’ hasn’t done anything deserving of all this vilification and damnation. This isn’t about Bonds, this is about Selig. What is he waiting for? This isn’t a perfect world, and he isn’t going to get a perfect opportunity. He should push his chips all-in, and let the cards play out.

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All commentary is the opinion of John J Perricone unless otherwise noted.
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