I am certain that Mariano must have been guilty of doing something wrong during his career -- a parking ticket, perhaps, or leaving a sock in his locker -- but he remains among the hundreds of major leaguers who give us hope that baseball is a game more clean than dirty.
Ryan Braun pulled the old Lance Armstrong routine, casting aspersions on the work of those who did the testing and investigating, making it sound like somebody was out to get him. A lot of people bought it. He was going to be the one who really did get unfairly tagged as a doper (and a dope).
Sure he was.
And then rainy days and Mondays come around, and there was Braun's permanent stain for all to see.
It gets tiresome, doesn't it? Hearing about this stuff? Reading about it? (Writing about it sure as hell does.) Wouldn't it be sweet if we could just get through an entire season talking about nothing else except whether the Oriole boy would wallop 75 home runs, or if the Pirates would finally get to hold a World Series in their beautiful ballpark, or if L.A.'s fans would introduce a "Puig Leagues" section in the outfield seats as prominently as the "Hollywood" sign?
Oh, and don't the Braves look good, too? And, hey, the Rays are really on a roll. And that's a nice trade the Rangers just made. And, whoa, that Reds kid sure does throw hard. And maybe the A's really are in it to win it. And the town might be bankrupt but Detroit's team is loaded, man. And plenty of good seats in Miami still available.
Dopes, go away. We're trying to watch a game here.
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