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If You Were a HOF Voter, Would You Put McGwire, Sosa, or Bonds on Your Ballot?

Yes
- 3 (37.5%)
No
- 5 (62.5%)

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Author Topic: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?  (Read 2373 times)

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WilsonHog

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Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« on: March 26, 2005, 11:47:30 am »

Why, or why not?

I started thinking about this a little bit after I read this week's SI.

If Bonds, why not Pete Rose?

If McGwire, why not Shoeless Joe Jackson?
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gatecrasher

Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2005, 12:06:58 pm »

Yes, yes, yes and one more yes for Rose...Lawrence Taylor smoked crack and he's in the Hall of Fame!!  It should only come down to what happens on the field.  And smoking crack is a hell of alot worse than gambling.  Should Rose have bet on his team?  No.  But should he be in the Hall?  Yes, he definitely should, as should McGwire, Sosa and Bonds.
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Brett Hitman Hog

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2005, 12:18:09 pm »

Mac ... yes.
Bonds ... I hate to say it, but yes.
Sosa ... I don't know if those 4 or 5  years are good enough for me to put him in the hall ... if you look over his entire career it doesn't match up with everyone else he still needs to do more for me to put him in.

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WilsonHog

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2005, 12:26:42 pm »

I am a huge Mark McGwire fan.  One of my most prized possessions is an autographed McGwire bat resting beside my computer desk.

His value as a baseball player, however, was always dependent on one thing - the ability to hit a home run.  If I am to believe that neither he, Bonds, or Sosa took steroids, I have to suspend all rational thought and base that belief on the simple fact that I do not want it to be so.

I am a baseball purist; I love the game, but I love its history and tradition as much as the game itself.  I'm not convinced that any player who took performance-enhancing substances needs to be enshrined alongside Lou Gehrig, Ted Williams, Joe Dimaggio, Stan Musial, and Sandy Koufax. 

I guess that's why every year I become more of a college baseball fan and less of a major league baseball fan.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2005, 12:28:29 pm by WilsonHog »
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JusticeHawg

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2005, 01:28:52 pm »

Unless they have some sort of proof that McGwire or Sosa took steroids then there is no way to say they took them.   Hearsay and saying that the FBI had McGwires name come up in a steroid probe does not prove he took them. But in this country we have this little thing that says innocent until "proven" guilty.  I am not one to defend these guys but unless proven they did take them you cant exclude them.  Hey I think that all three of them took steroids..... but my op pinion and anyone elses should not matter....opinions are not evidence....Bonds admitted to a grand jury that he "accidentally" took them.......of course we should not know that he did....cause leaking a grand jury investigations notes is slightly illegal.   anyway if Steroid use was as rampant as it is now looking.....there is no way to say who did and who didn't.  There are countless others who could have taken it.   To say that this is just a 90's thing is kinda a ridiculous too.....just this week Jim Haslett has admitted to taking them and that they started back in the 70's.....so who is to say that players back in the 70's didn't take them........its a big mess ....that is guaranteed....but to start just cherry picking people that had big numbers during this time would not be right.

And to say that Sosa's numbers do not stack up.......that his career outside of those few years where he went off was not outstanding.....he was a 30-30 guy several times....and over the course of his career....he has 600+ homeruns....I figure that is enough to get him in.....he also hit 60+ homeruns 3 times I believe.......I am not a big Sosa fan....he has a ego the size of New York...but he has the numbers.....and unless there is some definitive proof that he took roids....you cant exclude him.....besides...here is the point that nobody has made.....if they did steroids....the did them when they were not a banned substance by MLB.....they may have been illegal to take with out a Doctors Ok by the laws of the land....but MLB has just now outlawed them as far as having a steroid policy.   May be unethical to have taken them....but MLB had no policy on them.   

Is a ugly situation that at this time there does not seem to be a fix for...and may never be one.
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WilsonHog

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2005, 01:36:18 pm »

Was there ever any proof that Shoeless Joe, Buck Weaver, Eddie Cicotte, Hap Felsch, Swede Risberg, and the rest of the Black Sox conspired to fix the 1919 World Series?  As I remember, a jury even acquitted them.
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WindyCityHog

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2005, 01:59:26 pm »

No, no, and no.  Performance-enhancing drugs is a blight on the image of the game, and to say otherwise IMHO is akin to sticking your head in the sand.  The comparison with Lawrence Taylor is not even CLOSE to being the same thing.....Taylor had a drug problem, and yeah it embarrassed him and the NFL afterwards, but these roid-rangers are different....They took the drugs knowing full well what the effects and benefits were.  When all OTHER sports were testing for performance-enhancing drugs, baseball acted like they were different.....Stuck their head in the sand.

There MUST be some accountability here.  Let's be honest....The owners knew of it...The GMs knew of it...The players knew....and the fans knew.  "Well, until there's proof"...Come on.   This is BASEBALL, not a court.  Barry Bonds has admitted under oath that he "unknowingly" used steriods....Mark McGwire by refusing to say "no" might as well have admitted it....and of course, the biggest cheater of them all, Sammy Corka continues to deny using (which is total horse hockey)...

Doesn't anyone other than me find it ironic that Bonds isn't playing now?  Sure, he has the knee injuries....but the timing is intriguing.  That rant of his the other day...."I'm tired"...."The media got what it wanted"....Such complete and utter BS.  You want to know what I think?  He's going to be out just long enough to make sure there is no trace of steroids in his system....and he'll come back after that, break the HR record eventually, and say "Check me.  I'm clean." 

Now, this problem is coming to roost.  People like Wilson is where baseball is losing.....Fans are losing interest because "everyone" cheats.  It's time to clean it up.  As much as I like McGwire (I have a signed ballcap), he should be kept out of the Hall of Fame....as should Bonds.....as should Sosa.  Bud Selig and his entire organization should be fired (If you watched any of the Congressional hearings, you would know why.....the guy is a complete dope)...Baseball needs to move on.

....and Pete Rose has no business in the Hall of Fame.  He originally agreed with a lifetime ban.....he bet on games...and then he lied through his teeth in spite of the overwhelming evidence.  Check out the independent report....called the Dowd report.  Read it.  He's getting older, and now we're supposed to feel sorry for him?  Please....Recognize his hitting record.....but that's it.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2005, 02:01:51 pm by WindyCityHog »
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Porkahontas

Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2005, 04:33:31 pm »

I'd say no to all 3 of them because it's pretty obvious to anyone who cares to pay attention how they came to their success.

The bitch of it is that Bonds and McGwire were pretty darn good players before they became mutants with forearms the size of tree trunks. Sosa was a scrawny nobody until he blew up overnight and began launching bombs.

I agree with Wilson's assessment. If those three can get in, why not Shoeless Joe or Pete Rose?

But on the other side of it, Gaylord Perry wouldn't be in the hall of fame had he not cheated his way into it.

There's no right answer. It's just a shame that these mutated freaks are going to tear apart records that have stood for decades, and almost all of it is because they used a drug(s) (which are considered illegal to possess w/o a prescription and direct doctors care in the United State) to gain a huge advantage.
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gatecrasher

Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2005, 05:16:08 pm »

No, no, and no.  Performance-enhancing drugs is a blight on the image of the game, and to say otherwise IMHO is akin to sticking your head in the sand.  The comparison with Lawrence Taylor is not even CLOSE to being the same thing.....Taylor had a drug problem, and yeah it embarrassed him and the NFL afterwards, but these roid-rangers are different....They took the drugs knowing full well what the effects and benefits were.  When all OTHER sports were testing for performance-enhancing drugs, baseball acted like they were different.....Stuck their head in the sand.

There MUST be some accountability here.  Let's be honest....The owners knew of it...The GMs knew of it...The players knew....and the fans knew.  "Well, until there's proof"...Come on.  This is BASEBALL, not a court.  Barry Bonds has admitted under oath that he "unknowingly" used steriods....Mark McGwire by refusing to say "no" might as well have admitted it....and of course, the biggest cheater of them all, Sammy Corka continues to deny using (which is total horse hockey)...

Doesn't anyone other than me find it ironic that Bonds isn't playing now?  Sure, he has the knee injuries....but the timing is intriguing.  That rant of his the other day...."I'm tired"...."The media got what it wanted"....Such complete and utter BS.  You want to know what I think?  He's going to be out just long enough to make sure there is no trace of steroids in his system....and he'll come back after that, break the HR record eventually, and say "Check me.  I'm clean." 

Now, this problem is coming to roost.  People like Wilson is where baseball is losing.....Fans are losing interest because "everyone" cheats.  It's time to clean it up.  As much as I like McGwire (I have a signed ballcap), he should be kept out of the Hall of Fame....as should Bonds.....as should Sosa.  Bud Selig and his entire organization should be fired (If you watched any of the Congressional hearings, you would know why.....the guy is a complete dope)...Baseball needs to move on.

....and Pete Rose has no business in the Hall of Fame.  He originally agreed with a lifetime ban.....he bet on games...and then he lied through his teeth in spite of the overwhelming evidence.  Check out the independent report....called the Dowd report.  Read it.  He's getting older, and now we're supposed to feel sorry for him?  Please....Recognize his hitting record.....but that's it.
OK so McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds don't belong...but I believe Rose belongs...He didn't use 'roids...yes he bet on baseball...yes he agreed to a lifetime ban...yes he lied, but the man's performance on the field speaks for itself.  Paul Hornung was suspended for an entire season for gambling (with Alex Karras)...the Golden Boy is in Canton with several of his Packers teammates.  What's the difference?
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WindyCityHog

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2005, 06:24:12 pm »

That's easy....Hornung didn't act like an ass....didn't sign an agreement agreeing to a lifetime ban....and you're comparing football to baseball.

Pete Rose....what a knob...he knew his ship had sailed....so he signed an agreement agreeing to a lifetime ban.  What does that tell you?  IMHO, that says "Quit looking.....I need no further embarrassment".  Read the Dowd report...in its entirety.....and then let me know.   Hornung admitted to gambling....but then again he wasn't managing a team......

Screw Rose.  He then thumbed his nose at MLB by then appearing on bookie shows.....but that's in the past....Right?  May he rot in hell.  If I had any say, Rose could always WISH he was in the H of F.....Put a plaque up recognizing his contribution to the game....but some things just can't be excused.
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WilsonHog

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2005, 06:34:41 pm »

That's easy....Hornung didn't act like an ass....didn't sign an agreement agreeing to a lifetime ban....and you're comparing football to baseball.

Pete Rose....what a knob...he knew his ship had sailed....so he signed an agreement agreeing to a lifetime ban. What does that tell you? IMHO, that says "Quit looking.....I need no further embarrassment". Read the Dowd report...in its entirety.....and then let me know. Hornung admitted to gambling....but then again he wasn't managing a team......

Screw Rose. He then thumbed his nose at MLB by then appearing on bookie shows.....but that's in the past....Right? May he rot in hell. If I had any say, Rose could always WISH he was in the H of F.....Put a plaque up recognizing his contribution to the game....but some things just can't be excused.

Baseball has never had a commissioner that could approach Pete Rozelle. 

Rozelle had to deal with off-the-field issues involving Paul Hornung, Alex Karras, and Joe Namath.  What separates all three of those guys from Pete Rose is that they owned up to what they did and took the punishment that Rozelle handed down without very much complaint (other than Namath's "retirement," which he rescinded pretty quickly). 
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Oklahawg

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2005, 11:54:02 pm »

Yes, yes and yes. And, while we're at it, yes and yes on Shoeless Joe and Parlay Pete.

For just a moment, let's assume that all 3 knowingly took steroids. They didn't do anything that was illegal in society nor was it illegal in baseball until just recently. You can't retroactively impose moral standards. The performance enhancement steroids are "known" for is difficult to isolate and quantify. Baseball, of all the major sports, is the sport most artistic in its skill requirements. That is, brute strength and raw speed rarely impact the game. (And, the last two sentences are probably difficult to isolate and quantify!)

Walter Johnson was clocked throwing a 99 MPH fastball. In the 75-ish years since he hung up his spikes and moved to Coffeyville, KS, only a handful of pitchers can buzz the clock at 99 MPH. The raw distance baseballs travel has yet to surpass Mickey Mantle's 565-foot blast (immortalized on a 1961 Topps baseball card that is a proud part of my collection...somewhere). My point is that maximum measureable performance has essentially not changed since the end of the dead-ball era in 1920.

Why is no one talking about ballpark effect and expansion? The upswing in power numbers coincided with the addition of 4 clubs (Arizona, Colorado, Tampa Bay and Florida) and the stunning number of new ballparks, most configured to favor offensive production. Pitchers aren't treated the same way they were during Aaron's era, or Ruth's era. The financial investment in individual players demands that care be taken nurturing the players along. The pitching arm is sacred ground--pitchers that would have been workhorses even 30 years ago are now limited to 200-220 innings. You pitched until your arm fell off, and it didn't matter, nor didn't anyone care.

Remember 2001? That was the year MLB switched production sites for the baseballs used the first third of the year. That year stands as the great anamoly. Its the year, for example, Luis Gonzalez hit a ton of HR, about 20 more than in any other year. Did he juice for a year and then ditch the idea? Sure, its possible. But he was one of dozens who enjoyed career years in 2001. A class project? Doubtful.

One argument against these guys goes something like this:
1. Even though steroids were techinically legal they violated the spirit of fairness.
2. Because they eliminated a level playing field steroid use should qualify for asterisk or exclusion in the record books.

So, by the same logic, we should throw out the pitching records of Cy Young and Walter Johnson, and the HR records of Babe Ruth, because they were put together before the color line was broken. There are numerous legends about Josh Gibson of Negro League fame being a superior HR hitter to Babe Ruth. Maybe. We'll never know.

No one is complaining about the strikeout records of Nolan Ryan or the more recent efforts of Randy Johnson. Surely, these records were the result of juicing also, right? No. They were the result of a talented pitcher exploiting hitters who were hellbent on hitting the long-ball rather than hitting to get on base. The game itself has changed, moving away from small-ball and stolen bases towards station-to-station baseball waiting on the long-ball. It allows for greater strikeout totals by the truly exceptional pitchers out there. The total numbers don't compare because of 5-man rotations and situational bullpen strategies. Randy Johnson won't throw two complete games in a row, let alone two complete games in back-to-back games. Walter Johnson pitched 3 in a row, winning two by shutouts.

No one discusses the impact of innovations/progress in fitness science, the impact of eyesight surgery, and the understanding of swing mechanics. We won't even tackle the science of bat-making, with Barry Bonds switching to a new bat manufacter about 4 years ago, coinciding with his big boost in production. Nah, surely not, the bat couldn't have anything to do with it. And, his work with an eyesight coach was non-impactful. Let's ignore the fact that he has the best strikezone judgement of any hitter since at least George Brett, maybe Pete Rose, possibly Ted Williams. That's heady company, folks.

Am I proud of my favorite professional sport for what's happening? No, but they don't have the gang-banger image of the NBA and lord knows what causes those NFL guys to play/act like they do. While I suspect that baseball does a better job of looking the other way than those two sports, I think it does a better job of having a clean image. That 162-game grind will expose "behavior unbecoming of the team" quickly enough. If you are a baseball enthusiast you may know the name Josh Hamilton. He is a 23-year old prospect (?) drafted with the first pick out of a NC high school by Tampa Bay. An injury that cost him about a third of his 2nd season may have kept him from already having played in the majors. Since then he's been suspended by the team for more than 2 years now for substance abuse. According to his father, he couldn't handle the "grind" and got hooked on prescription stuff first and then illegal stuff second. Sad, but he's probably done, and a decent enough example of what can happen if you let your illegal influences get too carried away.

Baseball was in a no-win situation during its last collective bargaining session a few years back. They couldn't suddenly tighten up the rules too much or it would appear suspicious, and would also make it tough on those doping or juicing. But, the progress made wasn't enough to satisfy a congress with apparently nothing better to do (I'd argue social security, health care insurance, corporate sleeze and the war are worthy substitutes for steroids inquiries).

Get a pro baseball player off to himself and he'll tell you greenies are everywhere, uppers that help you overcome the grind. Tobacco and booze are complimentary items in some MLB clubhouses, or were until recently. Discreet episodes with a willing lady are commonplace. There are bigger fish to fry, and I am satisfied with the efforts MLB is taking to curb juicing and other problems.
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WindyCityHog

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2005, 01:02:29 am »

You're high Oklahawg ;)  You're way too lenient when it comes to baseball......but you make sound arguments.  Too bad we can't be voters ;D
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gatecrasher

Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2005, 08:14:41 am »

That's easy....Hornung didn't act like an ass....didn't sign an agreement agreeing to a lifetime ban....and you're comparing football to baseball.

Pete Rose....what a knob...he knew his ship had sailed....so he signed an agreement agreeing to a lifetime ban. What does that tell you? IMHO, that says "Quit looking.....I need no further embarrassment". Read the Dowd report...in its entirety.....and then let me know. Hornung admitted to gambling....but then again he wasn't managing a team......

Screw Rose. He then thumbed his nose at MLB by then appearing on bookie shows.....but that's in the past....Right? May he rot in hell. If I had any say, Rose could always WISH he was in the H of F.....Put a plaque up recognizing his contribution to the game....but some things just can't be excused.
But Windy, does the accomplishments on the field have ANY bearing on this??  I mean, weren't Halls of Fame created to recognize the greatest PLAYERS and contributors to sports?  I'm not saying what he did was right...he should have been punished.  But his accomplishments on the field have taken a total back seat...I just don't think that is right.  What he did off the field had nothing to do with what he did on it.  My opinion on this...He will eventually have his ban lifted, which will make him eligible for Cooperstown.  Now, whether he actually gets enshrined...well, his name has been dragged for so long by fans and media to the point it may not happen anyhow.  Maybe I am putting too much emphasis on what happens on the field...I for one don't pay too much attention to off-the-field news about players' personal lives.   By the way, Hornung is an a$$...met him in South Bend one time while I was there to see ND play Michigan...did you see his interview following Tyrone Willingham's dismissal?  He was an a$$ on there!
« Last Edit: March 27, 2005, 08:19:25 am by gatecrasherfan »
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JusticeHawg

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Re: Should McGwire, Sosa, and Bonds Be in the Hall of Fame?
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2005, 11:44:03 am »

I hear ya Okla.....I made that argument on here or another site about 4 or so months ago....the expansion + Bandbox stadiums has alot to do with the numbers we have seen....When you have a over abundence of AA and AAA lifers pitching every day in the majors .....dingers are gonna leave the yard at a astonishing rate.....and then add to the the change in the balls.....and you have a recipe for HR's......splash in a dash of chemicals ::) and who knows what happens... ;D


I still have a hard time with banning guys from the HOF for doing something that was not deemed ilegal at the time by MLB.....kinda hard to grandfather punishment in....

I also think that Shoeless Joe and his boys that deserve it should be in the HOF......as for Rose....Windy...the whole I hope he rots in hell line was a little harsh.. :o   He is a rat but to wish that on him is going a bit far.....could you just settle with a extended stay in a 10x10 room with Marge and her dog? ;).......I know the lady is dead....but I am sure they could line that up after he passes on as a sentence for his transgressions....

Come to think of it....that might be what he gets if he gets sent there....
« Last Edit: March 27, 2005, 11:45:46 am by JusticeHawg »
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