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The W - Baseball - Pablo Ozuna, Raul Ibanez, and Baseball's New Media.
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Super Shane Spear
Bierwurst








Since: 2.1.02
From: Sector 7 Slums

Since last post: 1507 days
Last activity: 1507 days
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.47
If you're like me and a fan of one of the five shittiest teams (yay dbacks) in baseball, usually the dog days of summer rankings go like this:

1. NBA Finals
2. Football OTA news (basically any nuggets from ESPNEWS, blogs, or tweets)
3. World Series of Poker streaming video
4. wNBA
5. Tiger Tiger Tiger
6. Ok fuck it, I'll watch the web gems...

Given this, it's ok to forgive the fact that I missed how 37 year-old Raul Ibanez has 20 (whoops 21) home runs before I've had my first home BBQ this year. His OPS+ going into tonight (where he hit a 3-run homer to win the game) was a ludicrous 168. Ken Griffey Jr, the patron saint of "clean" players, had OPS+ peaks of 171 and 170 at the ages of 23 and 24 respectively. Also, if you look at his last four seasons, Ibanez had played all 162 in 2 of his last four seasons and has played all 58 games so far this year.

So a few days ago a blogger mused about Raul Ibanez' incredibly hot start. He brought up points like ballpark difference, protection, and small sample sizes and put together a show of various exhibits to be investigated in a way. That's what fans of baseball do is dissect numbers and try to put logic with them. Sometimes there's no rhyme or reason to the perfect season. Nobody's ever caught Brady Anderson when he went mental and hit 50 home runs in 1996 (the eye of the steroid hurricane.) Nobody has yet been able to take down Luis Gonzalez for his 57 in the World Championship run in 2001.

Notice how I wrote the last two lines. They sound right, don't they? Nobody's innocent anymore. I'm comfortable enough to say there's about a 60-70% chance they used PEDs of some kind. It's a sad fact, but now in baseball the Duck = Duck = Duck rule is in full effect. EXCEPT NOBODY WILL SAY IT, NOT EVEN BLOGGERS. Jrod, the blogger in question, pulled off a usual blogger move where you can SUBTLY HINT!! at something so you can be heard, and then hide behind it later. It's an incredible bullshit move that's basically the equal of farting loudly in a room and then asking "Who farted?" If you're going to say that you think he's juicing, say it.

Raul Ibanez quickly responded basically by calling the guy a nerd and the nerd was then brought onto television to receive a tounge-lashing from Ken Rosenthal on Outside the Lines.

The hysterical thing about this was that instead of being taken to task for not having the balls to accuse Ibanez directly, Rosenthal basically took the Media Mafia route which was to basically reminding JRod that regarding steroids you get that head in the sand like we professionals were trained to do back in the early 90s. And keep it there. *catch breath* Either way, I guess justice for the crime was delivered and the day is saved. Back to covering USC's crimes against humanity.

Oh wait, Pablo Ozuna, a PHILADELPHIA PHILLIE, was suspended 50 games for PEDs today. I'd like to dance around what I'm thinking right now...but then I'd be a blogger, wouldn't I?





You should listen to what I listen to
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odessasteps
Scrapple








Since: 2.1.02
From: MD, USA

Since last post: 43 days
Last activity: 10 days
#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.03

read Joe Posnanski's thoughts.

He's a sports writer AND a blogger.



Mark Coale
Odessa Steps Magazine
The Affirmation, Baby Blog
EddieBurkett
Boudin blanc








Since: 3.1.02
From: GA in person, NJ in heart

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.45
I'm not surprised Ken Rosenthal went after the guy. He was on Mike & Mike last week (Click Here (espnradio.espn.go.com)) where he lamented the fact that its not journalism to accuse someone of using steriods based entirely a performance spike/decline without having solid evidence of actual usage. Jrod sounds like he did exactly what Ken was complaining about.



You believe me, don't you?
Please believe what I just said...
TheBucsFan
TheChiefsFan








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 1 day
Last activity: 1 hour
#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.18
    Originally posted by Super Shane Spear
    Notice how I wrote the last two lines. They sound right, don't they? Nobody's innocent anymore. I'm comfortable enough to say there's about a 60-70% chance they used PEDs of some kind. It's a sad fact, but now in baseball the Duck = Duck = Duck rule is in full effect. EXCEPT NOBODY WILL SAY IT, NOT EVEN BLOGGERS. Jrod, the blogger in question, pulled off a usual blogger move where you can SUBTLY HINT!! at something so you can be heard, and then hide behind it later. It's an incredible bullshit move that's basically the equal of farting loudly in a room and then asking "Who farted?" If you're going to say that you think he's juicing, say it.

    Raul Ibanez quickly responded basically by calling the guy a nerd and the nerd was then brought onto television to receive a tounge-lashing from Ken Rosenthal on Outside the Lines.

    The hysterical thing about this was that instead of being taken to task for not having the balls to accuse Ibanez directly, Rosenthal basically took the Media Mafia route which was to basically reminding JRod that regarding steroids you get that head in the sand like we professionals were trained to do back in the early 90s. And keep it there. *catch breath* Either way, I guess justice for the crime was delivered and the day is saved. Back to covering USC's crimes against humanity.

    Oh wait, Pablo Ozuna, a PHILADELPHIA PHILLIE, was suspended 50 games for PEDs today. I'd like to dance around what I'm thinking right now...but then I'd be a blogger, wouldn't I?




Man, your indignation might be justified if the point of the essay were "Raul Ibanez uses steroids." The point in actuality *clearly* was, "Circumstantial evidence does not appear to explain his success, so I can't rule steroids out." Can you grasp the difference?

The blog post was inspired by someone else "having the balls to accuse Ibanez directly," and the writer himself said upfront his intentions were to clear Ibanez's name, but he also said evidence didn't achieve that.
Super Shane Spear
Bierwurst








Since: 2.1.02
From: Sector 7 Slums

Since last post: 1507 days
Last activity: 1507 days
#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.47
Can you grasp the difference?

Of course. I just wanted to have a thread about this and I couldn't just post the links and run, so I decided to have a little fun. I think a quick history of my back posts will prove I'm not exactly Hemingway.



You should listen to what I listen to
Mr. Boffo
Scrapple








Since: 24.3.02
From: Oshkosh, WI

Since last post: 367 days
Last activity: 328 days
#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.24
Yeah, Rosenthal basically said that it was Jerod Morris' fault that people misunderstood what he wrote. I kept thinking of that quote popularly attributed to H.L. Mencken: "No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people."

And the other part that struck was where they said that Yes, people have these suspicions, but it's inappropriate to put them to print. In my opinion that's what got us into this mess: People who had suspicions (or at least darn well sure should have had suspicions) that something underhanded was going on, and said nothing.
EddieBurkett
Boudin blanc








Since: 3.1.02
From: GA in person, NJ in heart

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.45
    Originally posted by Mr. Boffo
    In my opinion that's what got us into this mess: People who had suspicions (or at least darn well sure should have had suspicions) that something underhanded was going on, and said nothing.


Rosenthal is right that printing suspicions is inappropriate for a journalist. If a journalist has those suspicions, he should act on them and investigate. Only once he has obtained clear evidence, report it. You are correct that the problem is that for too long, people simply did nothing.



(edited by EddieBurkett on 12.6.09 1651)

You believe me, don't you?
Please believe what I just said...
Quezzy
Knackwurst








Since: 6.1.02
From: The Moon

Since last post: 2 days
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AIM:  
#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.53
The Phillies have already played 4 series against the Nationals. Why don't ALL of the Phillies have 21 home runs yet?



Lance's Response:

THAT IS AWESOME!
TheBucsFan
TheChiefsFan








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 1 day
Last activity: 1 hour
#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.18
    Originally posted by EddieBurkett
      Originally posted by Mr. Boffo
      In my opinion that's what got us into this mess: People who had suspicions (or at least darn well sure should have had suspicions) that something underhanded was going on, and said nothing.


    Rosenthal is right that printing suspicions is inappropriate for a journalist. If a journalist has those suspicions, he should act on them and investigate. Only once he has obtained clear evidence, report it. You are correct that the problem is that for too long, people simply did nothing.



    (edited by EddieBurkett on 12.6.09 1651)


That's absurd. "Printing suspicions" doesn't mean, in the middle of a game recap, writing "Barry Bonds, who this reporter suspects of being on steroids, hit two home runs." It means asking players, and raising the questions in print: "Barry Bonds denied any steroid use."

Should reporters never have asked Barry Bonds if he has ever taken steroids, as there is nothing but circumstantial evidence to back up the suspicion that has? Or Ibanez - there is no hard evidence, so is the question itself off limits? How can you get the evidence if you don't raise the question first?

(edited by TheBucsFan on 13.6.09 1509)
EddieBurkett
Boudin blanc








Since: 3.1.02
From: GA in person, NJ in heart

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.45
    Originally posted by TheBucsFan
    That's absurd. "Printing suspicions" doesn't mean, in the middle of a game recap, writing "Barry Bonds, who this reporter suspects of being on steroids, hit two home runs." It means asking players, and raising the questions in print: "Barry Bonds denied any steroid use."


The act of asking Barry Bonds and the other players would count as investigating, so we are in agreement.



You believe me, don't you?
Please believe what I just said...
TheBucsFan
TheChiefsFan








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 1 day
Last activity: 1 hour
#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.18
    Originally posted by EddieBurkett
      Originally posted by TheBucsFan
      That's absurd. "Printing suspicions" doesn't mean, in the middle of a game recap, writing "Barry Bonds, who this reporter suspects of being on steroids, hit two home runs." It means asking players, and raising the questions in print: "Barry Bonds denied any steroid use."


    The act of asking Barry Bonds and the other players would count as investigating, so we are in agreement.


Well then what on earth are you talking about? What journalist printed something "speculating" about steroid use of a player without asking the player? The only person in this entire saga that I can see that even suggested Ibanez was on the juice was some anonymous hack on a fantasy baseball message board. It wasn't the blogger.

I agree completely with the quote of Mr. Boffo to which you responded. What did you think he was suggesting reporters should do that they aren't?
EddieBurkett
Boudin blanc








Since: 3.1.02
From: GA in person, NJ in heart

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.45
    Originally posted by Mr. Boffo
    People who had suspicions (or at least darn well sure should have had suspicions) that something underhanded was going on, and said nothing.


I was talking about the "if someone had spoken up earlier argument", with the point being that if someone had asked enough questions and kept after it, they would have come up then with what we know is true now. I guess where we differ is that instead of just printing said suspicions, I think they should have kept investigating until they had proof, and then printed. After all, how is printing unproven suspicions not libel? (I suppose including the "Player X denies the allegations" might keep it from becoming such...).



You believe me, don't you?
Please believe what I just said...
TheBucsFan
TheChiefsFan








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 1 day
Last activity: 1 hour
#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.18
    Originally posted by EddieBurkett
    I guess where we differ is that instead of just printing said suspicions, I think they should have kept investigating until they had proof, and then printed.


This is what I'm asking about. Can you provide me an example of a member of the media "printing said suspicions" without "investigating until they had proof"? I don't understand what it is that you think is happening that you have a problem with.

(edited by TheBucsFan on 15.6.09 1152)
Peter The Hegemon
Lap cheong








Since: 11.2.03
From: Hackettstown, NJ

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 4 hours
#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.03
    Originally posted by EddieBurkett

    I was talking about the "if someone had spoken up earlier argument", with the point being that if someone had asked enough questions and kept after it, they would have come up then with what we know is true now. I guess where we differ is that instead of just printing said suspicions, I think they should have kept investigating until they had proof, and then printed. After all, how is printing unproven suspicions not libel?


If they're identified as such.

If I wrote, "Joe Ballplayer murders people", that would be libel. But if I wrote "Joe Ballplayer was in Pittsburgh on two different occasions where there were murders in the city, and based on that, I think he murders people, although I don't have proof," that's not libel. I've been honest about what I actually know, I've labeled my suspicions accurately, and I've even spelled out my "logic" so people can easily see how baseless it is.
Quezzy
Knackwurst








Since: 6.1.02
From: The Moon

Since last post: 2 days
Last activity: 15 hours
AIM:  
#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.53
    Originally posted by Peter The Hegemon
      Originally posted by EddieBurkett

      I was talking about the "if someone had spoken up earlier argument", with the point being that if someone had asked enough questions and kept after it, they would have come up then with what we know is true now. I guess where we differ is that instead of just printing said suspicions, I think they should have kept investigating until they had proof, and then printed. After all, how is printing unproven suspicions not libel?


    If they're identified as such.

    If I wrote, "Joe Ballplayer murders people", that would be libel. But if I wrote "Joe Ballplayer was in Pittsburgh on two different occasions where there were murders in the city, and based on that, I think he murders people, although I don't have proof," that's not libel. I've been honest about what I actually know, I've labeled my suspicions accurately, and I've even spelled out my "logic" so people can easily see how baseless it is.


The blogger in his article broke down the possibilities of Raul Ibanez's increase in stats in great detail. His statistical analysis was far greater than someone being a murderer because he was in the same city during two murders. So if there is nothing wrong with your example then I don't see what is wrong with his article. The blogger's article was about 100 times more intelligent than anything that has been written about him by "journalists."

Really, the worst part of this story is whoever reported that this blogger wrote about Ibanez. Apparently it's an awful thing for the blogger to not rule out steroids use, but not so bad that the person reporting it brought it into the limelight. Nobody knows who this blogger is, "Does Raul Ibanez use steroids?" doesn't become a story because of the blogger it becomes a story because of the reporter that told Ibanez about the blogger because getting a quote was more important than bringing up suspicion on Raul Ibanez's season. Also I have a problem with asking Ibanez, "this blogger said you use PED's, what do you want to say?" instead of having the balls to say "did you use PED's?" THAT is the guy not being a very good journalist.




Lance's Response:

THAT IS AWESOME!
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