Major League Baseball should bring Jose Canseco underneath their umbrella,
and have him be a key spokesperson on steroids and making good
— Matt Minkus of the Tucson Citizen without any apparent irony.
You know, the reason why Jose Canseco was able to blow the whistle on steroids like he did was because he may have done more than anyone to popularize steroids among baseball players in the 80s and 90s and thus had all the names to name. And the reason why he did it was because he was dead broke after pissing away over $50 million in career earnings and needed to make a buck.
So sure, his whistle blowing may have served an admirable purpose, but that doesn’t mean you want him to be “a spokesman on steroids and making good decisions.” Because he did a ton of the former and made hardly any of the latter.
The big presidential pardon news today concerns the commutation of Chelsea Manning’s sentence. We’ll leave that aside. For our purposes, know that someone in the world of baseball was pardoned: Willie McCovey.
Yes, Hall of Famer Willie McCovey, who in 1995 pleaded guilty to income tax fraud related to the non-reporting of income received from memorabilia and autograph shows. Duke Snider pleaded guilty alongside McCovey. They were given two years probation and fines of $5,000. Snider died in 2011. McCovey still works with the San Francisco Giants as a senior advisor and goodwill ambassador.
President Obama’s release of McCovey’s pardon was pretty succinct. But it’s enough to scrub the record of one of the greatest sluggers of all time.
Rangers reliever Jake Diekman will have surgery on January 25 to help alleviate ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease. As a result, the lefty will miss at least half of the 2017 regular season, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. Diekman was diagnosed with the illness when he was 11 years old. He has brought awareness to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America with a “Gut It Out” campaign.
Diekman, who turns 30 years old on Saturday, finished the 2016 campaign with a 3.40 ERA and a 59/26 K/BB ratio in 53 innings. He came to the Rangers from the Phillies in the Cole Hamels trade on July 31, 2015.
The Rangers and Diekman avoided arbitration last Friday, agreeing to a $2.55 million salary for the 2017 season.