By Jon Lane
Never at a loss for words, the recently retired Curt Schilling spoke out against steroid users this week on Sirius XM’s “Mad Dog Unleashed.” Here are excerpts of the transcript passed on by SIRIUS XM:
Chris Russo: “If you had a vote, if you were a writer, Curt, would you put A-Rod, [Roger] Clemens, [Barry] Bonds in the Hall of Fame?”
Schilling: “No, none of them.”
Russo: “Really? Nobody? How about A-Rod who’s got nine years left to recover and do a decent job?”
Schilling: “No. No.”
Russo: “Manny [Ramirez]?”
Schilling: “No, no, none of them.”
Russo: “Do you think it takes away a little bit from the Red Sox’ championship in ’04?”
Schilling: “Listen, if you’re going to be one of those guys who thinks there is a team in the last 15 years that has played with 25 clean guys for 162 games, you’re lying to yourself.”
The Hall of Fame merits of Bonds, Clemens, A-Rod and Ramirez will be debated endlessly. I choose to react to this by staying in the now. A-Rod and Ramirez were caught and fessed up, and everyone has moved on. Ramirez returns to the Dodgers and “Mannywood” tomorrow, while Rodriguez continued his awesome run over the past week in Wednesday’s win over the Mariners.
Creative analogy from Peter Abraham: “Alex has pulled a Hulk Hogan in the last seven games. He was down and
out, sprawled on the canvas with the referee about to count to three. Then, suddenly, he was up and now the American League is about to get thrown around the ring before A-Rod drops the leg on them.”
Incidentally, Hogan admitted to using steroids in court, but that wasn’t the intent of the comparison. Those who followed WWE (nee the WWF) in the 1980s remember Hogan’s gimmick all too well. Neither 450-pound men jumping on his prone body nor the dreaded sleeper hold would defeat the Hulkster. He’d kick out, rise to his knees, and feeding off his frenzied “Hulkamanics” was suddenly impervious to pain. He’d take a few punches, point as his doomed opponent, connect with a few of his own, toss him against the ropes, land a big boot to the face, and drop the leg for the 1-2-3.
Those were the days …
Seriously, Rodriguez has been unbelievable since those two days of rest. One June 24 in Atlanta, after his frst two at-bats, A-Rod was in a 1-for-27 rut and batting .204, and pundits were quick to pounce on the angle that at age 33 (he turns 34 later this month) he was in a sudden decline.
Just like that, Rodriguez is 10 for his last 21 with four homers and 13 RBIs, spearheading the Yankees’ current seven-game winning streak. His mere presence in the lineup alone kick-started the Yankees. His production is taking them to new heights.