Goodbye Roger Clemens

Erik DianaCorrespondent IMarch 23, 2009

HOUSTON - JANUARY 31:  Roger Clemens throws batting practice during the Nolan Ryan and Jeff Bagwell Elite Camp January 31, 2008 at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Dear Roger Clemens:

I've had enough: I'm leaving you behind. It's time to say goodbye. You chose to go the route you did and drag everyone that loved watching you compete down with you.

In the words of Fleetwood Mac, "You can go your own way." 

You were once a paragon of athleticism and hard work. You symbolized what ability, hard work and arrogance could accomplish not only in baseball, but also in life. You were an artist on the mound that mixed perfect mechanics, a blazing fastball, splitter, fear and location into 300-plus wins.

You even had Americans fooled, with people believing you were a faithful husband and that you didn't commit infidelity. Maybe that's personal you would say. Maybe you're right.

But when you went on this slash and burn campaign to clear your name of using PEDs, you invited the public to look at your private life.

If you didn't want people to examine the private side of your life, you should just pulled a Barry Bonds or a Mark McGwire and kept your mouth shut. What's worse, looking like a liar and a potential child molester or a PED user?

Honestly, Brian McNamee never said that you used steroids your whole career.

You were the kid from Texas without a dad, a huge chip on your shoulder and a fastball that could hit triple digits, and you could aim it anywhere. What made me even care about you more was that you seemed to stick it to the Red Sox from 1997—2003.

I celebrated with the Yankees and you in 1999 when you finally got your World Series ring. I lost my father that August and that Yankees team seemed to resonate on a level that no team ever has or will.

Bernie Williams, Luis Sojo, Scott Brosius all lost their father at that time period. And to turn up the emotions with me, Paul O'Neill lost his dad right before you pitched game four, which you won. I'll never forget when Joe Torre hugged O'Neill at the end of the game, and the way the Yankees seemed subdued because they needed one another so much that season.

I remember reading how you comforted Paul O'Neill that night. I loved reading how you emotionally invested yourself into your teammates. I loved reading how competitive you were. I loved when you were on the Yankees and you became a protector to your teammates.

Even in 2007, when you hit Alex Rios in the back, after A-Rod (who has his own problems) got hit in the knee.

But you threw it all away, Roger. I wanted to be mad at you after you deserted the Yankees in 2004. I still say if the Bombers had you and Andy Pettitte on that team the Red Sox never sniff the World Series, and the biggest postseason meltdown ever is averted.

But I was happy that you were dominant in that bandbox stadium that used to be called Enron.

I stuck up for you after you hit Piazza in the head in 2000. I stuck up for you after you threw that shattered bat to the sideline in game two of the 2000 World Series.

I stuck up for you after Manny Ramirez charged you in game of the 2003 ALCS. I even stuck up for you after George Mitchell ruined your legacy.

Now, you've become a trainwreck. I don't recognize you anymore. And I don't want to anymore. The saddest thing of all is your pride did this to you. Your Texas-sized pride did this to you.