Wednesday, May 4, 2005

Dick Pound: MLB, players are dopes.

Some of major league baseball's players are fine with baseball's current drug testing policy.

The head of the World Anti-Doping Agency isn't so sure.

According to
TSN, Canada's ESPN, and the Toronto Globe and Mail, WADA chairman Dick Pound criticized Major League Baseball's current steroid testing policy. Said Pound, "They're in denial and fans are somewhat apathetic about it all, so there's no incentive for them to get tougher on drugs"

And frankly, even though I was in favor of the policy in the beginning, because it was at least less of a joke than the previous policy, the policy still stinks.

The main reason why it's still a joke is the suspension length. Currently a first offender gets 10 games, roughly equivalent to an NFL player getting suspended for 1 game. The NFL policy suspends players for 4 games. The other reason is that they don't test for amphetamines and other potentially performance enhancing substances.

You would think this would give Selig some ammunition to go to the players with, but Pound is equally unimpressed with the new proposed policy.

Quoting Pound from the Globe and Mail:

"If you do the math, the first offence [penalty] is something less than a third of the season, which puts it marginally ahead of the National Football League's four-game suspension, Neither is what is required. Cheating is cheating and the question is whether they want their sports clean enough to ensure that they are."
Speaking of Sports and Canada...

U.S. Hockey team beat Latvia 3-1 to clinch a second round berth at the World Hockey Championships in Innsbruk, Austria. In their final group game, the U.S. will take on Canada, who hung an 8-spot on Slovenia, but since both teams have clinched, this is mainly for seeding.

One more reason to hate the 12th game

John Henderson of the Denver Post reports that you can add one more voice to the chorus protesting the NCAA's decision to expand the season to 12 games:
Coaches who are concerned about injuries.

The funniest part about the article, though, is the quote from Myles Brand about whether or not a 12th game affects academics:

"There is no evidence (a 12th game) is detrimental to academics. Baseball, golf, tennis, basketball teams are all off campus much more than football"
And yet, they won't allow a playoff because they think it will interfere with academics.

More on Larry Cochell

The Kansas City Star's Jason Whitlock supports former coach Larry Cochell's decision to resign over "n-word" usage, but blames in part,
an attitude that it's OK for certain people to use the word.

What to make of Ezequiel Astacio

Ezequiel Astacio, much hyped Houston Astros pitching prospect who had been a hard luck loser 3 times in 5 starts with the Round Rock Express (mainly due to lack of run support), made his big club debut with the Astros yesterday.
The 'Stros lost 7-4 to the Pirates, but Astacio was not involved in the decision (i.e. middle relief blew it again)

The Chronicle's Richard Justice,
preaches patience with this Astro team and Astacio in particular.

That said, I would expect Astros blogger Lisa Gray at
The Dugout to come up with some kind of nasty review of Astacio's debut as soon as she can find PG language to describe it.

And David Stern released the following statement:
"I am not a crook!"

To add to the Watergate atmosphere now surrounding Jeff Van Gundy's charges, The Boston Globe's Bob Ryan has labeled the ref Van Gundy claims told him about NBA officiating policies as "Deep Whistle".

Meanwhile the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's Gil LeBreton plays the role of Mark Cuban's mouthpiece. Astros broadcaster and former manager Larry Dierker says he can relate to Van Gundy's situation. And the Chronicle's Johnathan Feigien reports that Rocket's owner Les Alexander is in Van Gundy's corner.

And if you think this battle is tough...

On the 25th Anniversary of the founding of the Dallas Mavericks, The Dallas Morning News recounts Donald Carter's struggle to get an NBA franchise for the Metroplex.

Tomorrow on Cheap Seats: Horsing Around
Tomorrow on Spur of the Moment: Game 5 Recap.
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