Quote of the day: Whitey Herzog

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The White Rat is none too thrilled with the steroids business:

“The people in St. Louis give Mark McGwire a standing ovation the other
day, and (former major leaguer) Jack Clark said every steroid user
should be banned for baseball, and they booed him. Now, what the hell
is the matter with society when that happens?”

I think what it says is that America cares a hell of a lot less with what you do and a hell of a lot more about how you say and do it.  McGwire was always a nice guy, and however flawed his admission has been, it’s been accompanied by a good bit of humility.  Jack Clark’s scolding was shrill and bitter.  The fact that one guy broke the rules and the other (presumably, anyway) didn’t is a secondary concern when it comes to public opinion.

We’re willing — maybe too willing — in this country to forgive transgressions by
people who are otherwise likable. We have very little tolerance for the
holier than thou.  I’m not saying it should be that way — I can see the arguments on both sides — I’m just saying that it’s always been that way in American society.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

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No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.

Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.

Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.