But when Torre, Cox and La Russa earned election into the Hall in December, former Sports Illustrated and current ESPN columnist Rick Reilly echoed my sentiments (Reilly’s the reason why I used to read SI from back to front).
Here’s what I wrote last February:
“I’d like to start a campaign to keep Joe Torre, Tony La Russa and Bobby Cox out of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Rumor has it that they’ll be on the veterans committee ballot this year. If Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire can’t get into the Hall because they abused drugs, then the managers who said nothing while their players were cheating also should be left out. Their silence means they condoned it or didn’t know about it, which seems unlikely. Either way, I say they’re out.”
Here’s part of what Reilly wrote shortly after they were elected:
“It’s just another year in the Hall of Farce, where the codes of conduct shift like beach sand; where the rules for one set of men are ignored for another; where PED poppers can never enter, but the men who turned their backs to the cheating get gleaming, bronze plaques.
“Hail The Great Enablers!
“La Russa’s slipping on the Hall of Fame jersey Monday is the sight that really tested my gag reflex. He did more for juicers than Jack LaLanne. He managed McGwire and Canseco — the Wright Brothers of the Druggie Era — for 21 combined seasons. He made millions on their pimpled backs, won his first World Series title on their syringes and built his 33-year managing career on their artificially carved biceps.”
I’ve always suspected that Reilly reads my stuff. This is air-tight confirmation.
Sticking with my baseball theme for this year’s Super Bowl, who remembers when John Elway played for the Oneonta Yankees in the summer of 1982? He batted .318 with four home runs and made some eye-opening plays in the outfield in his lone professional baseball season.