I love baseball. In my opinion, America's pastime is one of the most underrated game in sports. Critics say it moves too slow, but to the educated baseball fan, player, or coach, it moves fast - very fast.
Split second decisions need to be made on both defense and offense, throughout the entire game, by players, coaches, and managers. The average fan doesn't even see what needs to take place to win. To them it's entertainment like going to Sea World or the movies. It's a great game and one I would have loved to have been a bigger part of. The movie, Moneyball, is a must-see for any baseball fan and actually, anyone who thinks the game is boring. Decisions from ownership, to the GM, to the Manager, to the players are so critical and so highly criticized that each needs to be completely thought out thoroughly, with half the time needed to do so.
Okay, so much for baseball's positives. What Major League Baseball hasn't done, is handle the doping problem well and, even though who gets into the Hall of Fame is not going to make or break most people's day, it is something that needs some boundaries, or no boundaries at all. Barry Bonds cheated. Roger Clemens cheated. Sammy Sosa cheated. No doubt about it. But does that mean they weren't dominant ballplayers and made plays and didn't win games that the average ballplayer wouldn't have won? No - They were great.
Pete Rose was great. And if you want an argument, to me, that's the biggest crime of all. Pete Rose, during the time he was a player, earned Hall of Fame credentials 3/4 of the way through his career, when he did nothing wrong but play the game like no man before him. Yet, as a Manager, he was caught betting on baseball. No doubt that's a crime and can't be tolerated, but are you telling me that he's kept out of the Hall of Fame as a player because he did something illegal AFTER he earned the credentials to be in? Let's not even get into Ty Cobb, a great player, but one of the most disgusting people to put on a uniform. But that shouldn't and didn't keep him out of the Hall of Fame - he helped make baseball a competitive game and not just a day at the movies.
Do I give a damn if Bonds, Clemens (who lied to Congress under oath), and Sosa are in the Hall of Fame? No. But I also don't think it's right to keep them out. Major League Baseball has done a horrible job drawing lines in the sand and Bonds, Clemens, Sosa, and Mark McGwire brought the game back when it was disappearing. They were saviors of the game - Major League Baseball wasn't making much of a fuss about them, then, was it? If others belong in the Hall, so do they and especially Pete Rose.
Again, the Baseball Hall Fame is not something I wake up thinking about every day. However, the sun coming up is. As much as I'd like to see Rose, Clemens, Bonds, and Sosa in the Hall of Fame, I think my priorities are in the right place.