It’s hard to believe that another 2015 breakout performer is being suspended for taking an illegal substance as Dee Gordon has been suspended for the next 80 games. He will also be ineligible for the post-season if the Marlins were to get there. Gordon won the N.L. batting title last season (.333). Earlier this month, Toronto’s Chris Colabello got caught as well.
I feel absolutely zero sympathy for these guys as they are responsible for what they put into their bodies. I don’t know if Gordon will deny it but Colabello continues to deny taking an illegal substance. Whether or not they took something knowingly or not, they are still responsible. These two reports are proving that the MLB drug testing program is no joke. Players are not going to get away with cheating.
This is an unfortunate event in two ways. The first is Gordon is one of the most exciting players in the game. His speed is a lost element in today’s game and he has been fun to watch develop over that past few years. The game needs more players like Gordon, not the cheater. The second way this is unfortunate for baseball is cheaters are being rewarded. In the offseason, Gordon signed a 5 yr / 50 million dollar deal through 2020. This suspension will only cost Gordon about 3 percent of his contract, which comes out to like 2 million dollars. Gordon is an example of a guy who benefited from taking steroids. He will never have to worry about money again. Ryan Braun is another name that comes to mind that got a huge contact after taking steroids. I do not know what can be done in the future but it is not right for these players who get caught using steroids and are able to keep their large contracts. Being a baseball player myself, I would never take steroids because I have too much respect for the game. But if a player knows he has a chance to make millions of dollars and he may get caught and have to sit out 80 games, that does not sound so bad to me.
Baseball has made great strides in their drug testing program but I think they can continue to improve it, especially with harsher penalties.
With my semester finally coming to an end, I hope to get back to blogging on a daily basis. I just wanted to write this quick post to give my thoughts on the young season. My main observation is that the two leagues are completely polar opposites this year.
From what I have seen, the National League consists of 7 teams that I would classify as potential post-season teams. The Nationals, Mets, Cardinals, Cubs, Pirates, Dodgers, and Giants are clearly superior than all the other teams. The National League has so many bad teams. The Braves may be the worst team in all of baseball as they have managed to win four of their first 21 games. Cincinnati, Milwaukee, Colorado, and the Padres are all poor baseball teams. I believe the Phillies will be a part of the group come June or July but right now you have to give that young ball club some credit as they are currently one game over .500. The National League desperately needs the Marlins and Diamondbacks to be competitive or else you are looking at over half of the National League teams being classified as poor MLB teams. That is not a good ratio.
The American League is the complete opposite. Right now, a case could be made for 14 out of the 15 teams to make a playoff push. Everyone but Minnesota could be in contention as of now. Now do not jump out of your chair. I said you could make a case! I do not think the A’s are a playoff team but you never know with Billy Beane at the helm. I know the Astros are playing very poor right now but they did make the ALDS last year and for as poorly as they have played, they are sitting 5 games back of the Rangers. Despite the fact that the fact that the Chicago White Sox are off to a great start, I think the Royals are still the team to beat in the American League. But I still have questions about them as I am not crazy about their starting rotation. I do not think there is a great team in the American League. I see most of the teams beating up on each other throughout the season. In the National League, I could see the Cubs and either the Mets or Nationals becoming great teams. That is not the case in the American League with just about every team having a major flaw.
This is just something that I have observed through the first month of the season and I figured I would make a post about it. Like I said, I am going to try to blog more frequently in the upcoming weeks.