Sunday, February 17, 2008

Roger Clemens

Am I alone in not listening to, or caring about, the Congressional testimony of Roger Clemens? I get it. Major league baseball play has long involved the rampant use of steroids. Was the Clemens- McNamee fiasco supposed to be the exclamation point on an era gone sour? If that was its intent then, for me, it failed miserably. There is a saturation level that we all have on any given topic. Beyond that point, all that is thereafter discussed is, at best, background noise to be drowned out by all the other, more serious, issues we all face in our everyday lives. At worst, it is like an irritant which we wish could be blown up and sent into oblivion forever.

Is the Congress of the United States absolutely unaware of the myriad of critical concerns that outweigh the import of the investigation that they undertook and paraded forth on the national airwaves? Why would they think that in a year in which our economy is sinking like a stone, where there are 47 million Americans without health insurance, where we are mired in a war that has cost trillions of dollars and thousands of lives, that it was prudent and appropriate to waste one second of their time (and ours) berating or applauding Roger Clemens?

Don't misunderstand me. I love baseball and everything about it. But I strongly believe that baseball will survive Jose Canseco, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and the hundreds of others who apparently took advantage of a system that turned a blind eye to the fraud perpetrated upon us. Baseball is about holding your child's hand walking through the turnstile, talking about nothing in particular for hours and feeling the warmth of summer, and of the summer's game, take hold of your being. Those feelings will remain the essence of baseball long after the memory of the steroids era has receded into the history books.

For now, I know Mr. Clemens has opened himself up to the scrutiny of the Congress and the Federal prosecutors. Let his story play itself out in the courts, and eventually in the casting of votes for the hall of fame. Let Mr. Clemens and Mr. McNamee now recede from our view and tell their tales to those people required to evaluate their credibility.

For me, I would ask that Congress get back to the business at hand. I want no more baseball related comments coming from that body. Rather, I want to hear from those now down at spring training, of Joba Chamberlain or ARod, of great hopes and great promises. The pitchers and catchers have now reported and the focus should be on covering first base, throwing a sharp breaking curveball and making the starting rotation. I don't want to hear what these players think of Roger Clemens or Andy Pettite. Let the real games begin and let all the idiotic 'games' we have been subjected to come to an end. Enough is enough. Play ball.