On Monday, the Major League Baseball Players Association will hold its annual meeting, coincidentally just days after major revelations and hard-to-rationalize allegations about the steroid usage of major league baseball's most powerful hitters and biggest stars.
Last week, before seeing the ABC News 20/20 report on steroid usage is sports, I commented that, should Barry Bonds be found to have used steroids, the pall on his accomplishments would be huge. I would even say they should be career-threatening. I also said that there should be severe consequences, including perhaps delaying or preventing admission to the Hall of Fame.
Ken Rosenthal of The Sporting News appears to already be on the bandwagon to do what little he can. In this column, he says that any player whose career accomplishments are muddied by the possibility of steroid use won't get his first-ballot vote. It's a start. Of course, players already hate reporters, and will hate them even more now, but players have to understand that when they screw with the integrity of the game, there will be consequences.
Of course, Barry Bonds will still make $22 million in 2005, so I'm not holding my breath that he's really hurt or that the San Francisco Giants are worried, either.
I will say this, however: 20/20 correspondent Martin Bashir is no reporter. In addition to displaying wavering understanding of sports, he also clearly worked out with BALCO president Victor Conte what was to be said, and seems to have rehearsed the entire presentation with Conte. Conte's answers were not given in a way as to indicate that he was doing anything other than something pre-packaged. Bashir, in addition to filming a rehearsed interview, phrases everything for dramatic effect, concentrating more on his show business presentation than his questioning.
Email 20/20 about its report.
View video of interview with Victor Conte.