Gary Bennett, Jr.
Jerry Hairston, Jr.
Paul Lo Duca
Exavier "Nook" Logan
Gary Matthews, Jr.
F. P. Santangelo
Read the complete Mitchell Report here. I'm not exactly what you would call a baseball fan (or a sports fan at all, for that matter), but I find this to be very compelling reading. Senator Mitchell clearly and effectively puts forward what he's discovered, and I for one am finding his report fascinating.
I've read through the report and verified every name on the above list. They're all cheaters, as defined by former baseball commissioner, Bartlett Giamatti:
. . . acts of cheating are intended to alter the very conditions of play to favor one person. They are secretive, covert acts that strike at and seek to undermine the basic foundation of any contest declaring the winner – that all participants play under identical rules and conditions. Acts of cheating destroy hat necessary foundation and thus strike at the essence of a contest. They destroy faith in the games’ integrity and fairness; if participants and spectators alike cannot assume integrity and fairness, and proceed from there, the contest cannot in its essence exist.
I think my favorite anecdote from the report is one of which I have a vague recollection:
In 1983, four players with the Kansas City Royals were arrested on cocaine related charges. Three of those players, Willie Aikens, Jerry Martin, and Willie Wilson, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor possession charges and were each sentenced to a fine and one-year imprisonment (with all but three months of those sentences suspended).102 In December 1983, Commissioner Kuhn suspended the three players for a year without pay, although he said that the suspensions would be reviewed on May 15, 1984 “with a view to their reinstatement” if then warranted in the Commissioner’s judgment. He also required the players to submit to drug testing during their probations. Following a Players Association grievance filed on behalf of Martin and Wilson, the arbitrators recognized that “[t]raditional notions of industrial discipline support the conclusion that an employer may respond to drug-related misconduct with severe measures,” and concluded that “just cause” existed for a suspension. However, the panel concluded, any suspension beyond May 15, 1984 was “too severe to be squared with the just cause requirement.”
A fourth Royals player, pitcher Vida Blue, also was convicted, imprisoned, and fined in the Kansas City incident. Kuhn’s suspension of him for the 1984 season, followed by a two-year probationary period that included mandatory drug testing, was later upheld in arbitration, in part based on Blue’s alleged involvement in assisting other players to procure drugs.
I sort of remember this incident - mostly, how their faces were plastered all over the local news, and a few fuzzy memories of afros and locker room shots. The next year, the Royals went on to win the World Series, so maybe they should try that cocaine thing again. Whatever they're doing now isn't really working.