That ear on your forehead creeps me out

Not much is going on in Birdland, but I figured since I had a short day at work, I might as well do a post.

Didn’t catch Roger Clemens’ interview last night, but I heard some highlights (here’s the link. My favorite line:

“If he’s doing that to me, I should have a third ear coming out of my forehead. I should be pulling tractors with my teeth,” said Clemens

That’s just stupid. Clemens has been around longer to know what enhancers do and what the affects are. Here he’s just playing dumb and trying to play the ignorant card. He’s smarter than this.

“It’s hogwash for people to even assume this,” Clemens said. “Twenty-four, 25 years, Mike. You’d think I’d get an inch of respect. An inch.”

I think Clemens has gotten a couple miles worth of respect. But we’re talking performance enhancers here. There’s been whispers for years that Clemens was on something. His trainer said he injected him. His best friend in baseball, Andy Pettite, said he’s done it. The two have trained together for years. Aren’t we entitled to have doubts and ask questions?

“Why didn’t I keep doing it if it was so good for me? Why didn’t I break down? Why didn’t my tendons turn to dust?”

“I think it’s a self-inflicted penalty. They break down quick. It’s a quick fix,” he said. “They’re in and out of the game.”

He sort of has a point with the second quote. A lot of the names in the Mitchell Report were of players who did breakdown quickly or were injury prone. Look at our own Jay Gibbons, the Giambis, Kevin Brown, Eric Gagne, Denny Neagle, and Mo Vaughn. These were or are players who do have a talent for finding ways to get on the Disabled List.  But some of the other names were of players who do not have ‘dusty tendons.’ Miguel Tejada had a 1,000+ consecutive game streak going before he broke his hand and went on the DL. Steroids don’t break your hand, so he didn’t break down. Andy Pettite, Paul Byrd, Gary Matthews Jr, and Brian Roberts haven’t broke down. Barry Bonds, the kingpin of alleged doping, has cranky legs but he’s 44 and still out there.

I’ve never been a huge Clemens fan because that for most of his career he’s played against us in the division. He’s been a Red Sox, Blue Jay, Astro, and a Yankee (twice). The Astros are the only ones who aren’t in the AL East, so I’ve never really rooted for Clemens. I’ve always thought he was a good pitcher and would have loved to have him on our team. Hey, maybe it was B-12. If that’s the case, he can return to Houston and him and Tejada can shoot B-12 til they’re green in the face. It just doesn’t seem right to me. Pettite at least came forward quick and said ‘yeah, I’ve done it a couple times in my career.’ Maybe he did it more than twice, but at least Pettite fessed up.

Does Clemens now become the next Mark McGwire? Does he loomed in the sunset as a possibly tainted great player? A fan favorite, now an outcast from the sport that made him great? It’s a shame. Love him or hate him, he was good on the field, but now we are left to wonder how good would have been without the possible aid from enhancers.


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