The Baseball News

By Jason Wojciechowski on November 16, 2005 at 2:43 AM

From smallest to largest.

First, Albert Pujols won the NL MVP. That's not crazy, like the Cy Young awards, for example. If it's between Derrek Lee and Albert Pujols, I don't really have a strong feeling. Thank goodness Andruw Jones didn't win.

Second, Ned Colletti, long-time assistant GM with the Giants, will take over the for the Dodgers. Colletti's apparently been in front offices since 1982, when he started with the Cubs. The story at ESPN said he's fifty, which means he started in Chicago when he was 27, so he's essentially a lifer at this point. I'll wish him luck without holding out much hope that the Dodgers will be all that great in three years.

Finally, baseball instituted a 50-100-forever steroid policy. It's just getting more and more ridiculous. Who was the player in Seattle who tested positive despite apparently not using for, what, a year? Two? Is the so-called image problem really worth a step like this? What happens when someone finally gets the money and motivation to do a detailed, long-range study that shows that the various drugs guys are using aren't helping them perform?

Of course, we can't be expecting baseball or Congress to come through and actually, oh, I don't know, use gather and use data when they make decisions. Aren't many of the people in Congress former business-people? Aren't the team owners all business-people? What kind of business environments did these people come up in that decisions are just made willy-nilly, with no evidence that things will or won't work?

Now, I say this because I'm skeptical that, were a study to be done, it would come out with the result that the drugs really help the players. Were it to be shown that players really benefit from the drugs, then fine, I'm all for these suspensions. But if it came out and were publicized that the drugs don't do anything, then that'd be its own deterrent, wouldn't it? What player would sacrifice his future (Lyle Alzado) or his current health (Jason Giambi) if he wasn't actually going to hit or pitch better? The penalties would be entirely unnecessary. But instead, rash decisions were made for public-relations reasons, and, for those same reasons, those decisions can never be taken back, no matter what science ends up saying.