Cal Ripken Jr. has nothing to prove

February 10, 2009 | Drew Forrester

“Hey Cal, Gehrig called, he wants his record back!”  That came in yesterday via the “comments” portion of my A-Rod blog. 

Granted, because the author of that “gem” is a daily moaner at WNST.net, I’m not entirely sure he was actually trying to make a legitimate contribution or just seeking to wind up Baltimore sports fans with another one of his baseless entries. 

Either way, I thought it was interesting.  Actually, I thought it was “stupid” moreso than interesting, but hey, spring’s around the corner and I’m working my “Mr. Positive” mojo these days.  Let’s just stick with “interesting”.

Oddly enough, there were others who either e-mailed me or called the show and threw Cal Ripken Jr.’s name into the ring of Steroids.

I had someone go as far as to write: “Cal should prove he didn’t use steroids.”

Huh?

I know a lot of things have changed in our country over the last 25 years.  Some for the good, some for the bad.  Recently, our 8-time Gold Medal Olympic swimmer smoked marijuana in public.  That’s one of “the bad”. 

I’m still certain, though, that a foundation of our society and, as importantly, our judicial system, is “innocent until proven guilty”.

Cal Ripken Jr. is now forever linked to an era where a huge portion of the players in the late stages of his career were using performance enhancing drugs. 

Unfortunately, there will be people out there who say, “Gotta look at Cal too…look at all those games in a row he played.”

I doubt Barry Bonds and Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire are on Cal’s Christmas Card list.  Neither are Raffy, Canseco or A-Rod.  All those bums have done is tainted any legacy of greatness that the true “great ones” attained.

So, based on the logic that Cal broke Gehrig’s record during the steroids era, are we to also assume that Greg Maddux used steroids since he had one more win (355) than a confirmed steroids user in Roger Clemens?

No, we shouldn’t assume that at all.

Cal Ripken Jr. doesn’t have to “prove” anything to anyone about steroid use.

Just because he played with a bunch of miscreants doesn’t make him one.

What a game baseball has become.  It’s been filled with so many toxic human beings – on the field and off the field – that even the good guys get scarlet letters on their jersey.

By the way, nowhere here have I written that Cal Ripken Jr. didn’t use steroids.  The only person who knows that is, of course, Cal Ripken Jr.

That said, it’s silly and irresponsible for anyone to say, “make Cal prove he DIDN’T use them…or, Hey Cal, Gehrig called, he wants his record back.”

Then again, silly and irresponsible is what our society has become.

Silly and irresponsible sums up baseball too.

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