New York City area talk radio is all abuzz with the A-Rod story. He just received a 162 game suspension, coincidentally the length of an MLB season, for what seems to have amounted to a ton of circumstantial evidence that he used steroids, or PED’s, or HGH or some other performance enhancer.
What is left unsaid and yet is obvious about this story is the utter uselessness of it all. The average American Imbecile will call up Mike Francesa’s show, or the cloddish front runners on the Michael Kay show, and complain to whoever will listen about how horrible A-Rod is, and how he’s a cheater and a lowlife and a Benedict Arnold to the Yankees and Baseball in general. They decry the use of PED’s (the trendy term for steroids, ‘Performance Enhancing Drugs), and explain how they have ruined baseball.
This seems odd. The ratings for Francesa’s show are God-like. He is paid a ton of money to talk sports (he does it quite well) for five hours a day. Easily 90% of the call are anti-ARod. Today Francesa was battling callers who were up in arms about how wretched A-Rod is, and how he should be banned for life, drawn and quartered, and then the pieces blasted into space. Francesa was simply and correctly pointing out that there is little to no hard evidence against A-Rod, and although he is a distasteful person, the evidence is not ironclad and MLB, particularly the commissioner, seems to have a vendetta against him. Francesa is right, and by the fans’ reactions, you’d think he’d just nominated A-Rod for Yankee captain and demoted Derek Jeter to latrine duty.
I realize that this is all part of some sort of show, some kind of Kabuki theater. Do the fans really care about PED use? Does A-Rod and his $27 million salary offend the most rabid, mouth breathing fan?
Not at all. Attendance at Yankee Stadium last year was 3,279,589. 3.5 million dedicated moneyspenders showed up the previous year. Alex Rodriguez could show up at the park, inject himself with HGH and Fetal Horse Cells while at home plate and the Herd will still show up and blow gobs of cash on watching these people. At least the Seattle fans, A-Rod’s original team, showered him with fake dollar bills upon his first return to their city after he signed monstrous contract with the Texas Rangers. Yankee fans bark on call in shows, but that seems to be the extent of it.
I’ve been following the Yankees for the past 30 years, closely for the past 25. I go to no games, watch about 3 games a year from the comfort of my living room, and read great books about the game.
Follow my lead – get with the program NY fans.