“Out of all the records in the major sports, the home run stat takes the cake.”
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – It started with Marion Jones being stripped of her Olympic medals; it continued with Lance Armstrong’s seven Tour de France titles being taken back by the International Cycling Union and continues now with Major League Baseball level. Cheat
San Francisco Giants outfielder Melky Cabrera, who led the Major Leagues with a .346 batting average, decided to forfeit the batting title and MLB happily accepted his offer. The league omitted Cabrera’s name from the National League batting leaders – as if it never happened. It’s like Melky never existed, until you look further down the statistics. Check out Triples. Melky is still listed in the #6 slot with 10 triples. The leader, coincidentally, is his ex-teammate Angel Pagan, with 15 three baggers.
Why is Cabrera recognized for his 10 triples but the invisible in the batting average department, which belongs to another ex-teammate in Buster Posey at .336??? Was it because due to a thorough investigation conducted by a Ken Star-led committee? No. It was because Melky said so. MLB then instantly embraced his wishes before he changed his mind. Did we mention that Cabrera was serving a 50-game suspension imposed by MLB after he tested positive for high levels of testosterone? And isn’t that the same testosterone that home run leader Barry Bonds and one time single season home run leader Mark McGuire eventually admitted to using? The answer to both is yes.
With Jones and Armstrong being stripped of their rewards because of performance enhancing drugs and MLB’s acceptance of Cabrera refusing to wear the batting crown, the time is now for MLB to right what is wrong. It’s time for Commissioner Bud Selig to bring the integrity back to the game. Out of all the records in the major sports, the home run stat takes the cake. Most points in basketball, most touchdowns in football, and most goals in hockey are second next to the “Home Run King.”
For years Babe Ruth held the title at 714, a number that rolled off everyone’s tongue. In 1974, Hank Aaron’s 715th blast was on national television and the drama leading up to that historic home run was followed by the nation. Enter Barry Bonds, who thirty years later hit 756 to surpass Aaron’s lifetime mark and be crowned the new “Home Run King.” Unlike Aaron’s record breaker, however, there was little fanfare and hardly any interest. Why? Because Barry cheated. Now, Yankee slugger/admitted cheater Alex Rodriguez stands home runs behind Bonds with 6 the countdown to the next “Home Run King” is even less intriguing to everyone. Blame the cheating and the commissioner’s failure to police this problem.
But now the door has opened a crack for Bud Selig. If he can take Cabrera’s batting title off the books, why can’t he re-appoint Hank Aaron the rightful Home Run King again? Further, Selig could do the game justice by bringing back the #61, Roger Maris’ single season HR record. It was only surpassed by admitted testosterone user’s Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa.
So, here’s our plea to Commissioner Selig: Do America’s pastime the justice it deserves and strip these comic book characters/numbers of their false honors. If that’s not enough, think about your legacy. By accepting these “records” you are justifying the actions of this rotten core and are tainted by association. The Melky Cabrera Fiasco gives you your out. Restore Aaron & Maris, Bud. It’s time.
Tune in tomorrow for Cookie’s Corner, where it’s all natural beauty.
Filed in: Aristotle "Mugsy" Sakellaridis