On the long list of problems I have with the steroid issue and baseball, one of the biggest that doesn't get enough mention is the complicity of not just sportswriters (who had to see things on a daily basis) but the clubs themselves. Not just the managers who likely encouraged (or, at least, didn't discourage) this abuse...but also the management of each team.
Not convinced that the executives had anything to do with it? Well, aside from rewarding fat statistics with huge paychecks, how about the way the Yankees are dealing with Jason Giambi?
While MLB continues to look into Giambi’s quotes last week in which he all but admitted steroid use, the Yankees are waiting on MLB’s findings before deciding if they can void the rest of Giambi’s $120 million contract that runs through next season. There is an option for $22 million that won’t be picked up.
MLB and the Yankees, who are on the hook for $41.75 million, were tight-lipped about the issue. So, too, was Giambi, who returned to the lineup as the DH against the Red Sox last night after missing the three Subway Series games against the Mets when a bone spur in his left heel didn’t allow him to play first base. The commissioner’s office and the players’ association have held discussions about setting up a meeting with Giambi to discuss his comments, but nothing was firmed up yesterday.
So, if you do what everyone SAYS is the right thing to do (just admitting to being in the wrong, facing the future with a clean slate), the message is -- you might get cut. And lose millions of dollars in the process.
There's a fundamental rule to economics that suggests most everything largely comes down to incentives. What, exactly, does this imply baseball is motivating its players to do? Stay quiet, that's what.