Okay, so Roger Clemens may have lied about his use of performance enhancing drugs (PEDs) but really does it matter?
We are all taught from a young age that lying is wrong and if people are going to have an issue with Clemens the lying needs to be the issue. Though lying is wrong, especially to Congress, it is understandable in Clemens’ situation. Before, you click the back button hear me out.
Clemens was viewed as one of the best pitchers of all time and by all accounts a good person. Both he and his wife are very involved in the community and both work to raise breast caner awareness. Everyone saw what happened to the perception of Barry Bonds after being accused of using PEDs. It is forever tarnished.
The evidence against Clemens is both incriminating and circumstantial. As far as the creditability of Brian McNamee, it is really uncertain. It is easy to see how and why McNamee could have lied but it is also easy to see why he would tell the truth. McNamee named Clemens in order to escape jail time as part of a plea bargain. Furthermore, the creditability of McNamee was brought into serious question during the House Oversight Committee hearing.
It has been stated many times by Sen. George Mitchell that McNamee had no reason to lie because if it was found out that he lied, his plea bargain would be void and he would be imprisoned. Andy Pettitte certainly did McNamee justice by confirming McNamee’s statements about his own use of PEDs, but Pettitte did side-step and tip-toe around the questions about Clemens.
Based on the reputation Clemens had on and off the field and the holes in McNamee’s story, Clemens should deny using PEDs. It is obvious how the public and Hall of Fame voters feel about PEDs. Just as Bonds was crucified in the court of public opinion, Mark McGwire was equally chastised by the Hall of Fame voters. It is clear that players linked with PEDs have virtually no chance of getting elected to the Hall of Fame.
Keeping that in mind, Clemens’ only chance to end up with the other top players of all time, was and is, to prove his innocence. Just to make sure no one missed what I just said I will be blunt.
Clemens is arguably the best pitcher of all time and he deserves to be recognized as such. The way we recognize greatness in sports is Hall of Fame enshrinement. The Hall of Fame is not based on being a good person, so if Clemens did lie about not using PEDs that should not take him out of the Hall. Using PEDs should not take him out of the Hall either.
This is the steroid’s era, bottom line. It is clear hundreds of players have used PEDs. The big argument against PEDs is that it creates an uneven playing field. If Clemens did use PEDs, he equaled the playing field for himself. The playing field was not just raised by hitters using PEDs, but by also by ball parks be built smaller, the strike zone shrinking, and balls them selves being “juiced.”
All in all, if Clemens did lie and he did use PEDs, it doesn’t matter. The ferocity and passion Clemens pitched with is something that should not be lost on people. I grew up looking up to Clemens. I have been a pitcher since I was nine years old and 11 years and a college rotation spot later I still try to emulate one of the best pitchers of all time.
With great admiration, Kaleb Heffner #22.