Wednesday, April 06, 2005

This Made Me Laugh

I've been watching the Red Sox - Yankees game on ESPN and they've been repeatedly running a banner at the bottom of the page saying that three Pirates minor leaguers have been punished for steroids. Great press, huh? I was immediately worried that one of them would be Brad Eldred or Nate McLouth or someone else who has potential, but no, it was Jon Nunnally, Brian Mallette, and Tom Evans.

Dave Littlefield wins the Hypocrite of the Day award for this one:

"If there's a positive in this, it's that Tom Evans is the only one who has been part of our organization," Pirates general manager Dave Littlefield said. "We have a zero-tolerance philosophy in terms of drugs."

Despite that policy, Littlefield said the Pirates did not plan to release any of the players after their suspensions end.

Hilarious! They're serious about this no-tolerance policy, but not so serious that they'd be willing to part with three journeyman non-prospects who are doing something illegal. I personally don't care much about the steroids issue, so I mostly avoid writing about it here. But I find it funny that Littlefield doesn't even bother to frame his moral righteousness in such a way that he can avoid looking completely ridiculous after a follow-up question.

UPDATE: A commenter points out that "zero-tolerance" might actually mean something like "punishing after the first offense." Littlefield did say he was referring to "drugs" and not "drug users," and Mallette et. al. will be punished, which means that maybe what he said isn't as hypocritical as I originally thought. Now I just wonder what he's talking about, since it's the league, not the Pirates, that actually metes out the punishments. In any case, nothing to see here, move along...


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