It's been a long time, internet. But you know what? We're not sorry.
Okay, maybe we're a little sorry, but we don't owe you anything. This isn't here for you. This is here for us, goddammit.
Something Amerigo and I have been discussing for a few weeks, which seems especially appropriate right now: naming names. The Mitchell Report on steroids in baseball is due out this week, probably Thursday. Angels owner Artie Moreno got the ball rolling for us in the Los Angeles Times two weeks ago: "The names of players will come out that people will be mad about. Some of my information is secondhand, but I know there's going to be names." There's been rampant speculation around the FTC offices about just who the Mitchell Report will name.
Let's face it, kids: there's no point in bitching and moaning about how steroids have corrupted the game or ruined our innocent childhood dreams (cry me a river, Gary Smith). The underlying truth here is that we're still going to turn to sports for fun and entertainment. It's fun to watch baseball, just like it's fun to follow the continuing decay of the New York Knicks. It's trivial, it's entertainment, and sometimes -- like when your team wins -- it's rewarding. Well, it's not going to be rewarding for a while, so while we're waiting for them to clean up the game, let's make the best of it.
It is in that spirit that FTC is proud to present a long list of baseball players we think did steroids. We've ruled out guys who have already admitted steroid use (Jason Grimsley, David Segui, Jason Giambi, etc.), players who have already been suspended (Jose Guillen, Guillermo Mota), and players whose names have been very, very closely linked to the former two categories through documents and news reports (Gary Matthews, Jr., Rick Ankiel, Sammy Sosa, Gary Sheffield, about 47 other dudes). Also, Barry Bonds. Just cause...come on. Without any further ado, here is a list of names that we at FTC wouldn't be surprised to see in Senator George Mitchell's report, or any subsequent investigation into drug use in baseball (we've divided our picks into several fun subgroups):
The report is due out today, so we're going to keep a steady watch and bold the ones we get right.
Group A: Guys we think totally did steroids
Tony Phillips (not immediately obvious, but look at the teams the guy played on. They're loaded with obvious juicers, and Tony Phillips put up some pretty un-Tony Phillips-esque numbers for a little while.)
Alex Gonzalez (both regular and S.)
Fernando Tatis (injected into sideburns)
Butch Huskey (Come ON)
Ozzie Canseco (how have we NOT heard his name yet?)
Group B: Guys we think probably did steroids/wouldn't be surprised
Ed Sprague, Jr.
Rob Dibble (would be a definite yes if not for his friendship with Dan Patrick)
Luis Sojo (once almost hit me with his car)
Group C: Guys Spinmove is certain did steroids, though Amerigo disagrees
Benny Agbayani (slipped by clubhouse attendant into pre-game ham feast)
Group D: Potential juicers named Kevin
Group E: Players whom we at FTC are totally positive would have failed a drug test in 1996:
Group F: Players whom we at FTC don't think used steroids, and we wouldn't even want to know about if they did
Ken Griffey, Jr.
Andy Van Slyke
Group G(ritty): Players whom we at FTC swear up and down did NOT use steroids, but who we hope did so that when Tim McCarver finds out, he'll take his own life: