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Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Remember the Geoff Baker Rigidity Awards? If not, they were a short series of posts I wrote last spring in the wake of the Jerod Morris/Raul Ibanez steroid dustup. You know, the one in which a blogger said that it was possible, based on a statistical pattern, that Raul used PEDs and then every mainstream writer came out of the woodwork to attack said blogger for being irresponsible? Following all of that, our friend Geoff Baker wrote a column in which he claimed that the people who hurl this kind of baseless innuendo wouldn't have passed the "very rigid course" he taught at Concordia University. Never mind that Baker himself and countless other members of the media had done the same or worse in the past without anyone raising an eyebrow. A blogger though? Lord, have mercy.
Anyway, I recap all of that because, for the first time in a long time, we have a candidate. It's Sam Donnellon of the Philadelphia Daily News, who in the process of breaking down Philly's third base options, says this about Adiran Beltre, a man who has never been accused -- based on any evidence anyway -- of doing steroids:
Beltre, 31, hit 48 home runs with the Dodgers in 2004, but who didn't hit 48 home runs in the pre-congressional steroid hearings world of 2004?
You'll recall that Rick Reilly won the first ever GBRA for his own evidence-free accusation of Beltre. Did Beltre take steroids? I don't know! For what it's worth, Beltre denies it and, for even more of what it's worth, though it may have been a "pre-congressional steroid hearings" world, they were testing for steroids in 2004.
But the point is that neither Donnellon nor Reilly know either, and if they're going to drag Jerod Morris or any other blogger through the mud for leveling such claims, they had better be prepared to withstand Geoff Baker's rigidity as well.
(thanks to reader Jay S. for the link)
As I'm winding up work this morning, a law student who has worked in my office as a clerk since the beginning of summer left me a mix CD entitled "Music that Craig Likes?" She and I have been friendly enough, but we've never talked about music or pop culture or anything like that. Certainly not about anything of enough substance that would give anyone a sufficient lead to go and pick out 15 songs that are likely to be up my alley. Skeptical, I put the CD in. The results: fabulous. Mostly old school punk -- Richard Hell and the Voidoids, Stiff Little Fingers, The Damned, and more mainstream stuff like the Ramones and the Clash -- but also some nice 80s and 90s flavor like Billy Bragg, Nick Cave and the Pixies. To top it off, she ended it all with "The Breaks" by Kurtis Blow because, hell, just because. All stuff I love, but mostly stuff I last had on Memorex tapes circa 1990 and lost somewhere between then and real adulthood. If she had merely parroted my current record collection she would have gotten points for coming up with a good profile. Putting together stuff I (a) love; and (b) have lost turned what merely could have been a fabulous mix CD into a transcendent one.
Is this law clerk some sort of mind reader or, as another coworker said a few minutes ago, do I merely give off super obvious aging hipster vibe? I don't think it's the latter. In fact, I've always assumed most people who meet me figure that I'm an old fart who generally wants people off his lawn. Which is true, of course, but either way doesn't lead anyone to think that I'd actually enjoy a CD full of punk. I dunno, the lesson here, such as there is one, is that you just never know, ya know?
Anyway: I wrote seven posts for CTB this morning. Right now they're missing for some technical reason, but I assume they'll come back soon. Stuff about Roy Halladay and the Red Sox, stuff about Johnny Damon begging the media to ask the Yankees if they'll sign him (quite an endorsement of Scott Boras) stuff about poor Frank McCourt only having a million bucks to his name. A post about Billy Wagner being a good fit for the Braves. Tim Lincecum's arbitration demand. Something about Adrian Gonzalez being off limits. There's another one in there, too, but I can't remember it. Click here. If it works, great. If not, click again later. We're reaching the point of my legal career where I feel comfortable drinking bourbon in the office, so I'm not gonna check back a whole lot.