This article was written following Alex Rodriguez's interview with Peter Gammons. While it is a late release, I wanted to put it out there. Thanks!
Alex Rodriguez, the most recent baseball player to be tainted by The Steroid Era, botched a golden opportunity to save his reputation in an interview with ESPN's Peter Gammons.
Selena Roberts of Sports Illustrated reported that A-Rod was among 104 MLB players who had tested positive for steroids in 2003.
Granted, Rodriguez displayed proactive judgment by approaching the story head-on, instead of denying his alleged past steroid use like Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens.
However, he really had no choice, considering he was backed into a corner.
Rodriguez has publicly lied on several occasions about his steroid use, most notably in a 2007 interview with Katie Couric on 60 Minutes.
In addition, he denied accusations of cheating made by former major leaguer Jose Canseco, who has correctly identified Rafael Palmeiro, Mark McGwire, and others of steroid usage.
But when presented with concrete evidence from Roberts that challenged his past credibility on the issue, A-Rod decided to tell the truth about cheating.
So, while Rodriguez may be seen as a man of integrity because of his so-called honesty, he was simply a man out of options.
Admittedly, Rodriguez appeared remorseful in his interview, fighting back tears and speaking softly, defending his actions by pleading naiveté and youthful ignorance.
But A-Rod's ambiguity in his answers provided more questions than answers and has created doubts about his honesty even now.
Rodriguez insisted he only used steroids in his three seasons with the Texas Rangers, but believing him is difficult, considering his perceived knowledge of his drug use.
"Again, it was such a loosey-goosey era," Rodriguez said. "I'm guilty for a lot of things. I'm guilty for being negligent, naive, not asking all the right questions. And to be quite honest, I don't know exactly what substance I was guilty of using."
According to his comments, Rodriguez was unaware of what he, or another individual, was injecting into his body on a regular basis over a span of two years.
If anything, that sounds pretty “loosey-goosey.”
In addition, Rodriguez insists that he has not taken steroids or any other performance-enhancing drugs since he was traded to the New York Yankees in 2004.
“I’ve played the best baseball of my career since [stopping steroid use],” he said. “I’ve won two MVPs since and I’ve never felt better in my career. Of that I’m very proud.”
After lying extensively about using steroids, Rodriguez expects the nation to believe that a five-season span in which he hit 208 home runs and won two AL MVP Awards was “clean.”
Unfortunately for A-Rod, the majority of baseball fans, myself included, will not buy into what he says, considering his past tendencies to lie.
However, he made matters much worse as the interview with Gammons progressed, sticking his foot in his mouth once again.
Rodriguez, eager to move some of the spotlight away from him, attempted to smear Roberts, the journalist that reported his use of performance-enhancing drugs.
“What makes me upset is that Sports Illustrated pays this lady, Selena Roberts, to stalk me,” Rodriguez complained.
The accusations A-Rod has made against Roberts include that she tried to break into his home while his children were sleeping and that a police report was filed against Roberts involving the alleged events.
Rodriguez even mentioned that the University of Miami police had escorted Roberts off of the school’s campus.
"I can tell you that long list of things he alleged were a complete fabrication," Roberts said in an interview on The Dan Patrick Show.
As for the police report that A-Rod gave special emphasis to, it turned out to be benign and did not involve any violations of the law.
Instead, Roberts had asked police if the island where Rodriguez lived was considered private or public property, learning from the officer that it was indeed public property.
Once again, A-Rod has been caught in a lie—a big lie—but what’s new?
By using performance-enhancing drugs and lying about it repeatedly, along with his false accusations against Roberts, Rodriguez has taken a huge hit to his credibility and rightly so.
Maybe Joe Torre was justified in calling him “A-Fraud.”
He has not done anything to prove otherwise.