Thursday, November 6, 2014
Posted by el duque at 7:21 AM
Death by media.
Yep, you're killed by a billion paragraphs, byte to byte, for as long as people will click onto your link.
And it's on: The chicken coop pecking party for Number 13, Alex Rodriguez.
We've seen this movie. We know how it ends. If you thought A-Rod will ever swing a bat for the Yankees, think again. Once the Gammonites flock together, it's like a sky full of flying monkeys, flapping and crapping, and blotting out the sun. It just grows louder, until the target falls.
Wait: Before you accuse me of the most wretched thing anyone can do - defending A-Rod - let's recognize that, in the end, he'll get what's coming. They all do. He's served a 211 game suspension, lost practically two years, but the worst days - it's the silence of shame that hurts most - remain. Still, yesterday, when news popped that A-Rod last year admitted his drug use in court proceedings, the media's gush of self-righteousness once again broke the fish scales.
Two weeks ago, they were screaming that A-Rod needs to confess. Now, they scream that he did. Whatever he does, they'll scream. They won't stop until he's gone. It's over, folks. Hal Steinbrenner will cut his losses, Bud Selig will get another statue, and Barry Bonds can sleep in peace, forgiven in Frisco.
The Gray Lady's Juliet Macur, who generally is on the noble side of reality, today calls A-Rod "disgraced and despicable ... brash and brainless"... and dealing "with a whole new set of drug revelations." (Which, frankly, isn't true. This is the same period we've already dealt with, and for which Rodriguez has served his punishment.)
But yesterday's hungriest glutton for the low-hanging fruit was Mike Vaccaro, the once proud columnist for the Olean Times Herald, now a full-time razor-mouth for the Murdoch Post. In a "Death to Smoochy"-level tirade, Vaccaro cut some old-fashioned corners, the kind that would have gotten him booted from the St. Bonaventure locker room. He centered his attack on that wonderful, but long-discredited claim that A-Rod sleeps below an oil painting of himself as a centaur.
US Weekly, which was wrapped around an unnamed source. Of course, compared to the New York Post, an unnamed source in US Weekly must seem like a signed deposition from Winston Churchill. Trouble is, the A-Rod-centaur story - for all its beauty and grandeur - has been roundly debunked. Vaccaro apparently decided it was too juicy to research beyond the third reference on a Google search. In his quest to destroy A-Rod, why let journalism get in the way?
His column ends with Vaccaro literally calling A-Rod names, like a third-grader shouting from across the street.
Yeesh. Does Rupert Murdoch pay these guys by the hyperbole?
I hate to be ripping otherwise nice guys. I also hate to be the only person in the world defending A-Rod, the poster boy for a generation of players, whose biggest mistake was not buying his drugs from more secure networks in the Dominican Republic. Twenty years from now, people will be scratching their heads over all this bile and indignation. And sadly, I fear they'll all be wondering how the Alex Rodriguez story would have played out, had he been allowed to come back.
Increasingly, I doubt that will happen, because sports writers - some of the biggest party animals on earth, and the last people who should be dictating social morality - intend to scream and stomp their feet until A-Rod goes away.
Jeez. Do the right thing. Just throw him in a pit and let him be digested over the next thousand years. But spare the "Sultan of Caught" from another round of hypocrisy.