Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Sincerity Is For The Weak! Maybe.

Athletes are proud people. We know this. Half of their job is to be so mentally tough that they are almost delusional. The greats can't even FATHOM losing a game. The can't allow themselves to sit around in consternation like a fan.

So why am I disgusted with the A-Rod semi-apology? I know that he's a proud athlete with a gigantic ego who isn't used to saying sorry for anything. Yet I wasn't anywhere near placated yesterday when I heard him.

He did what he was supposed to do, he gave some extra details as to what happened in 2003 and who he was with (some nameless cousin). He called himself young and stupid and apologized for his mistake. Sort of.

Yet, as Jayson Stark points out, A-Rod made the situation even murkier with his apology. He contradicted himself in front of everyone and shot all sorts of holes in his earlier apology with Peter Gammons.

That's what makes me angry about this situation. A-Rod is either really stupid, or, more likely, he thinks we're really stupid. He said he was about five years younger than he really was when he used steroids. He said he was injected with some unknown substance from out of t
he country (even though he told Gammons he walked down to GNC to get his stuff), and then later said he know he wasn't "popping Tic-Tacs" which is why he was secretive about doing this.

First of all, am I to believe that a guy as aware of his body as A-Rod is would inject some unkown substance into his body for years without wondering what it was? Secondly, who the hell injects themselves with Tic-Tacs?

A-Rod clearly isn't telling truth and was hoping that the act of apologizing was enough without actually letting us know what he's sorry for. Kind of like a Jason Giambi special.

We shouldn't be surprised with A-Rod's insincerity. Of all the athlete apologies we've heard over the past decade, I can count on one hand how many athletes apologized sincer
ely. I can remember Andy Pettitte last year, Todd Bertuzzi when he nearly killed a guy on the ice, and I'll hold an open slot for whomever I forgot (feel free to add any in the comments section).

On the other hand you have baseball players who avoid saying they did anything wrong and you have guys like Ryan Leaf who apologize as though it's the media's fault for bringing it up.

I don't want an apology if you don't mean it. It's selfish spin-control, not remorse. I'd rather have Dominic Raiola, who would rather have people dislike them. At least you know where they're coming from.

Like most fans, I wish A-Rod would just admit what he did. It would have taken one minu
te and it would completely short-circuit any media follow up because there would be nothing else to uncover. Instead this issue will fester and A-Rod won't get what he wanted, which I assume is closure.

And he doesn't deserve closure because his apology was the equivalent of a player not running out a pop fly. He made a mistake back in 2003. Now he's made another one.

Welcome to club "sports apology without responsibility" A-Rod. Be careful, it's crowded in there.

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