Great Moments in Steroids Hysteria

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You gotta read Rob Neyer’s latest post. Short version: the Hall of Fame and the Taylor Hooton Foundation funded a survey about public perception of steroids as a national problem. Fine. Not sure why the Hall of Fame cares about such things, but it’s not my money funding it.

The kicker, though: the report on the survey is shocked that the public does not consider steroids to be anywhere near as big a threat to our nation’s youth as things like drinking, eating disorders, drugs, obesity and other things that, you know, ARE REALLY BIG PROBLEMS FOR OUR NATION’S YOUTH.

You can say it’s just a survey, but organizations do surveys and release reports like these for a reason. They want to publicize their cause and beat the drums for awareness and donations and things. And the people beating the drums in this case seem to truly believe that it’s wrong that people don’t think steroids are as big a problem for kids as other things.  Which is insane.

Just remember that the next time you hear anything about steroids from either the Hall of Fame, the Hooton Foundation or writers citing them as sources when making anti-PED arguments.  Their perspective is skewed. Irresponsibly so, I’d argue.

Anthems, first pitches and other ceremonial stuff

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The World Series is not just about the baseball. It’s about the bigger-than-usual stars singing the National Anthem, the more-famous-than-usual people throwing out the first pitch and all of the assorted to-do which surrounds the ballgames. Here is that sort of stuff for Game 1 and Game 2 in Boston.

First pitches:

  • Carl Yastrzemski will throw out the ceremonial first pitch for Game 1. Yastrzemski also threw out the first pitch of Game 1 in 2004, 2007 and 2013. The Red Sox won each of those games and each of those World Series so, yeah, go with what works, right?
  • Members of the 2004 World Series Champions will throw the ceremonial first pitch of Game 2. It doesn’t say which members, so maybe my dream of Manny Ramirez doing it will work out after all. Hey, he played for the Dodgers too, so let’s make this happen, OK?

National Anthems:

  • Singer-songwriter James Taylor will perform the National Anthem prior to the start of Game 1. This morning Peter Gammons tweeted that Taylor’s family helped build Fenway Park. Let’s file that under “interesting, but not so interesting that it’s really worth tracking down to confirm, so why not believe it?” Sweet dreams and flying machines in pieces on the ground.
  • For Game 2 the National Anthem will be performed by the Boston Pops, with the Tanglewood Chorus and the Boston Symphony Children’s Chorus doing the singing. The Boston Pops are conducted by Keith Lockhart, who was a career .287/.354/.425 hitter in 37 postseason games with the Atlanta Braves. I mean, at least I’m pretty sure it’s the same Keith Lockhart. Again: not interesting enough to check so, like Gammons’ thing about James Taylor, let’s assume I’m right about this.

Play ball.