Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 2/22/13
Mike Schmidt‘s stance is crazy enough to agree with. In an age in which a player is enshrined in Cooperstown only after surviving an extensive PED witch hunt, Schmidt’s take on the whole Hall of Fame process is actually a breath of fresh air. His opinion might not be a popular one, particularly among the BBWAA members who spend countless hours arguing why certain players from the Steroids Era don’t deserve to be inducted, but one single point made by the former Phillies third baseman shows exactly why we need to step back and look at what the entire voting process has become: ridiculous. Everyone and their mother these days seems to assume that both Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds used steroids during their big league careers. But while it’s certainly possible, perhaps even likely, neither player ever failed a drug test administered by Major League Baseball, which is why Schmidt isn’t so quick to write them off. “I would not have a problem with Bonds or Clemens [being inducted],” Schmidt said, according to CSNPhilly.com. “Here we are convicting them of PED use and we don’t know anything more than we read.” That’s the problem. Yes, there is plenty of evidence that suggests Clemens and/or Bonds used PEDs. However, not considering them for the Hall based on such evidence rather than failed drug tests — which don’t exist — is a slippery slope. Unfortunately, the voters are already sliding down that slope. “I really feel uneasy about linking players of that era to PEDs who may not have been involved, players where there may be suspicion of involvement,” Schmidt reportedly said. “I think it’s totally wrong that that whole generation is being linked to PEDs. If you had a friend that used them you’re linked to them. It seems now if you’re a Hall of Fame-caliber player that you’re going to have a really tough time getting in the Hall of Fame. It’s really too bad. It’s a problem we have in our sport right now, but time will cure it.” Essentially, what Schmidt is saying is that part of the writers’ voting process has become determining who they think used steroids and who didn’t. The problem is that making those determinations requires leaning on rumors, biases and each player’s believability. Take Craig Biggio, for example. The reason he received more votes than Bonds or Clemens during the most recent vote is because he has never been linked to performance-enhancing drugs. He’s considered by many voters to be “clean,” and therefore — based on this year’s voting results — is considered by many to be more worthy of Hall of Fame enshrinement. But why? Biggio has never been linked to PEDs, but he did share a locker room with the late Ken Caminiti, an admitted steroid user, and Jeff Bagwell, a player many voters are keeping off their ballots because of steroid-related suspicions. Yet Biggio seemingly emerged from this year’s stacked class as the one “clean” guy. And although far less significant players have been pinched for steroid use over the years, there’s a legitimate possibility that we’ll someday see Biggio get inducted into the Hall of Fame while Clemens and Bonds stand by wondering if the writers will ever open the gate for them. None of this is to suggest we should suddenly suspect Biggio may have dabbled in PEDs. It’s simply to point out that we hold these steroid-related beliefs about certain players based on things other than “legitimate” tests — as Schmidt put it — and it’s causing us to make assumptions without any real way of knowing the truth. Clemens and Bonds might have used steroids. Thousands of others might have, too. It’s simple to say, but we just don’t know who did and who didn’t. Unfortunately, the futile quest for truth will forever make the Hall of Fame voting process one giant mess, complete with ass-backward assumptions and he-said, she said bickering. Have a question for Ricky Doyle? Send it to him via Twitter at @TheRickyDoyle or send it here.
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Ezekiel Elliott: ‘Evil NEVER prevails’

Orioles, Padres reportedly talking trades of Melvin Upton, Cashner

Le’Veon Bell reportedly missed ‘several’ drug tests

Report: Islanders looking at locations to build new arena

Top five takeaways from this year's NBA Summer League


NCAA rules that hanging out with hip-hop star Drake is violation

WATCH: Justin Bieber arm wrestle Sixers center Joel Embiid

RUMOR: Celtics sign Green, Zeller and two others to contract deals

Kevin Durant Thunder jerseys going for less than 50 cents in OKC

Why are Saints holding out on contract talks with Drew Brees?

Jay Gruden gives out primo parking spots to hard-working players

Solo not taking any chances with Zika virus while in Rio

Rays reportedly demanding Profar in pitching deal with Rangers

Facebook doesn’t know the difference between Liverpool and Arsenal

Report: Teams asked about Wade Davis, asking price very high

Aussie Rules Football player accidentally kicks, breaks own leg

Former Arkansas football assistant trolls Bobby Petrino on social media

Could Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw's injury hinder trade talks?

Spurs strike a new deal with NBA stalwart Manu Ginobli

George makes return to Team USA following leg injury

Why the Clippers shouldn't break up their big three

White Sox pay homage to Bo Jackson’s bat-breaking skills with bobblehead

Orioles affiliate pay tribute to David Bowie on their jerseys

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Effect of ban on Russia could span beyond the Olympic Games

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

QUIZ: Name every city to host the NBA All-Star Game

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

One Gotta Go: NBA players make tough choices on their favorite rappers

One Gotta Go: NBA Summer League is not about that Game of Thrones life

The top NHL free agents available as offseason winds down

WATCH: NBA jersey sponsors that need to happen

Expansion draft playing heavy hand in the current NHL offseason

WATCH: Pop & Timmy have a guys' night out

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker