Mitchell Report – McCarthyism in baseball?

by thoughtfulconservative

Courtesy of the Tampa Bay Rays blog and the St. Petersburg Times are the complete list of players named in the report. Guilty or not, they are now viewed as guilty. The deficiencies of the report?

Reliance on a few witnesses, at least some of whom were threatened unless they testified. Wasn’t this what was wrong with the McCarthy hearings?

During this time many thousands of Americans were accused of being Communists or communist sympathizers and became the subject of aggressive investigations and questioning before government or private-industry panels, committees and agencies. The primary targets of such suspicions were government employees, those in the entertainment industry, educators and union activists. Suspicions were often given credence despite inconclusive or questionable evidence, and the level of threat posed by a person’s real or supposed leftist associations or beliefs was often greatly exaggerated. Many people suffered loss of employment, destruction of their careers, and even imprisonment. Most of these punishments came about through trial verdicts later overturned, laws that would be declared unconstitutional, dismissals for reasons later declared illegal or actionable or extra-legal procedures that would come into general disrepute.

Maybe baseball is different. Or will the media clamor for Roger Clemens’ records to be marked with an asterisk like they do about Barry Bonds’.
The Journal Sentinel posted a poll about Eric Gagne, one of the players named. It asks ” If Eric Gagne can help the Brewers, do you care that he’s in the Mitchell Report?” I answered yes for the reason that the Brewers hope he can return to his previous ability, but if that ability was due to performance enhancing drugs and he no longer takes those, how effective is he going to be?

You can probably find more in the coming days on the sports blogs, one of the best, IMHO, are the local guys at the Wisconsin Sports Bar.

Missing from the list were guys who played for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Maybe that’s why they sucked.


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