As a practicing physician and an expert in both anabolic and vitriolic steroid use, allow me to make one thing clear:
The hip cyst that will cause Alex Rodriguez to miss the beginning of the 2009 season is not — in any way — the result of steroid use.
As my colleague Gary Wadler told Newsday, cysts of this type are common among professional athletes due to wear and tear. A-Rod may have even been born with it:
The cyst is probably not related to an injection of anabolic steroids, Wadler said, because the hip is not an injection point for the performance-enhancing elixirs. Among the much more likely causes are athletic wear and tear, infections, tumors or genetic conditions.
I have spoken with Alex Rodriguez numerous times since his initial diagnosis, and have reassured him that the hip cyst is not the result of the reckless and naive behavior he exhibited when just a lad in his late 20s. Likewise, I have advised him that his premature baldness, foot arch acne, and testicular ossification are also not to be blamed on his use of performance enhancing drugs.
Furthermore, any speculation that Alex’s other conditions — including earlobe dentata, knee propellors, and magma urination — are steroid-related is irresponsible and slanderous. Lots of otherwise healthy people develop so-called “mushroom fingers,” and are able to dislodge and replace their own eyeballs. By the same token, many hispanic men in their early 30s grow dragon wings from their nipples.
It’s all part of the natural aging process for professional athletes. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a lot of patients to attend to.
Doping expert says A-Rod’s cyst not related to steroids [Newsday]
Filed under baseball, sports
What we’re listening to as we macerate the news that not only is A-Rod a dick, but he’s also a slum lord who charges $100 late fees on $600/month apartments.
Fake Tales of San Francisco, The Arctic Monkeys
Yoke the Joker, Naughty by Nature
When the Stars Go Blue, Ryan Adams
Love, Smashing Pumpkins
Title Track, Okkervil River
Rental Car, Beck
Cattle and the Creeping Things, The Hold Steady
Number One, Kanye West
Apres Moi, Regina Spektor
Bonus video goodness: The single greatest six minutes in the history of Sesame Street:
Buster Olney earns his money this time of year, with excellent blog posts from the GM meetings with all kinds of good hot stove stuff (ESPN Insider, subscription-based).
Today he had an interesting aside in the A-Rod discussions pertinent to Pax’s post. He notes that it will be interesting to see if Scott Boras can get an offer to match the Yankees’ opening offer to A-Rod, which at the time was $100 million less than what it would take to get to the negotiating table. The observation comes on the heels of the assumptions that Mike Lowell will re-sign with Boston, which Newsday says the Yankees believe, and that the Angels might try to fill their hole through a trade for Miguel Tejada or Miguel Cabrera. Then Olney offers us this:
What is particularly stunning is how much some other agents are rooting against Boras, rooting for the possibility that he will be embarrassed in the end, and hoping that for once, he has gone out too far on a negotiating limb. “If I were another team,” said one agent, “I would proceed very cautiously and not assume he has any offers. When he says he has offers from other teams, if I were representing a team negotiating with him, I would say this: ‘I want to see the faxed offer. Show me the fax.’ “
Now, I guess it shouldn’t be too surprising or interesting that rival agents don’t want Boras to succeed. He is a rival, after all. However, Olney’s subtext is different: the aim seems to be to embarrass Boras rather than see him fail financially. You get the sense that the whole community is tiring of his act. It’s become personal, similar to Pax’s comment about how fanbases hate A-Rod in a different way than other baseball villains.
Will A-Rod be the tipping point for Boras to be propelled down from superagent status to just a regular slimy douchebag? Hard to say, but before you get too excited, remember that Boras was universally panned in the Daisuke Matsuzaka negotiations, with all commentators saying the Red Sox played it brilliantly and got Dice-K below value. Immediately after this “loss,” Boras got the Sox to bid against themselves to overpay JD Drew for 5 years and $70 million.
Josh Brattain of The Hardball Times does as good a job as one can do in poking a gaping hole in “superagent” Scott Boras’ ridiculously overinflated estimation of A-Rod’s worth on the free agent market.
Brattain’s big point is that A-Rod was actually worth the truckload of diamonds Tom Hicks forked over in 2000, because he was a rock solid shortstop who at 25 had accomplished more than any other infielder in baseball history.
Please don’t go to the Mets, please don’t go to the Mets, please don’t go to the Mets
Now, he’s a 32-year-old masher with an average glove at third base. Can he hit? Absolutely. But why are we talking about “ownership” money instead of “great player” money?
Speaking of comparables, what about this one?
Regular season (2004-2007)
Player BA OBP SLG HR
David Ortiz: .302 .403 .612 208
Alex Rodriguez: .302 .391 .578 220
Post season (2004-2007)
Player BA OBP SLG HR
David Ortiz: .381 .500 .735 9
Alex Rodriguez: .245 .343 .380 4
Is Rodriguez’ defense and base running worth $20 million?
Oh, there’s more.