Baseball writers of America will have some tough choices this January, when two of the game’s most accomplished and polarizing figures become eligible for entry to the Baseball Hall of Fame. Both Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens should be obvious inductees when you look at the numbers, but the disproven allegations that both lied about using performance enhancing drugs (PED) have still left many questioning whether they belong in Cooperstown.
Bonds, who set the all-time home run record, was cleared of charges last year that he lied to a grand jury about not knowingly taking PED’s. Seven-time Cy Young winner and MVP, Roger Clemens was acquitted this past summer of perjuring himself while testifying in front of Congress about not taking steroids.
But even the acquittals have left many unconvinced. While some insist that any involvement with steroids should be an automatic disqualification from hall of fame consideration, others believe it would be a disservice to the game of baseball and to Cooperstown to not acknowledge the steroid era. They argue that ignoring players involved in steroid use is ignoring a part of baseball’s history, however ugly.
Do you believe Bonds and Clemens should be inducted in to the hall of fame? Why or why not?
Bill Shaikin, Sports columnist at the Los Angeles Times