Yankees Roger Clemens Et Al – Open The Doors And Let Them In


The Yankees, like all other major league teams, were part of what has become known as the Steroid Era of baseball.

Presently, and based only on reports from writers who have made their ballots public, Yankees standout Roger Clemens is among those who are making significant gains towards reaching the 75% minimum required for election to the Baseball Hall Of Fame. Reluctantly, but practically, it’s time to open the doors and let them in.

Yankees fans and all fans of baseball should never (I believe) forgive and forget those who made a conscious decision to enhance their career by using substances, whether legal or not, that are designed to manufacture performance that is not generated by natural talent.

And we could sit here all day and argue about who did and who didn’t, and when they started using, when they stopped, what they used, and attempt to gauge how much those substances enhanced their performance on the field – forever and we’d still be spinning our wheels. Why do we even bother? If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and talks like a duck, then it is a duck. End of story.

Except it’s not the end of the story because this is a never ending story unless we choose to write the final chapter here and now. When the BWAA announced that former Commissioner Bud Selig would be taking the stage in July at Cooperstown, that was a smoke signal that that said it was time to move on.

Because by voting Selig in, they were doing an end around since he was not a player, though certainly, he was an active “player” during the steroid era as the man wielding power. And again, we’re not here to talk about whether he dropped the ball and should have been more proactive during the early years when virtually everyone connected to the game knew that “something” was going on.

And coming off the strike year in 1994 when there wasn’t even a World Series, some may want to grant him a little leeway as baseball tried desperately to climb its way back into the hearts of baseball fans across the country.

Yankees Roger Clemens: The Man Of The Hour

So, back to the man of the hour, one William “Roger” Clemens. The Yankees latched on to his services for a total of five years in which he won 70 games, including the 2001 season when he went an unbelievable 20-3, which included two starts and one victory in the World Series against Arizona.

More from Yanks Go Yard

As a Yankees fan, I never particularly liked Roger Clemens, and before you ask no I don’t know him personally. He was a bully on the mound and a bully in life who seemed to do everything to make you not want to like him. But darn it, he has the numbers.

And if anything, baseball is a sport that is infatuated with numbers. Everything is about numbers, and for the most part, the Hall of Fame, as it should be, has been reserved for those who put up the biggest numbers.

In a few years, the Yankees Alex Rodriguez will be eligible. How could there be any discussion about the worthiness of his numbers, unless you want to get into that steroid thing again? Ditto Barry Bonds.

But, we’re not electing the Boy Scout of America here. Instead, we are saying here that there are two Yankees who were an integral part of Yankees teams that were successful during the years in which they played. In fact, they both dominated the league over that span. That’s it.

And while this “softening,”  is going on, maybe we should also take another look at “The Hit King” as he likes to call himself these days, Pete Rose, and ask ourselves if he should be lifted from purgatory as well.

Next: Five Biggest Questions /facing The 2017 Yankees

The one thing that shouldn’t be too much to ask, though. And that’s when the likes of Clemens, Rodriguez, Rose, and all the others take the stage on that warm July Sunday afternoon when their name is called at Cooperstown, that each of them takes a moment in their speech to say two words that can mean a whole lot to Yankees fans, as well as all fans of baseball.  And that’s a simple “I’m sorry.”