Racialicious Sports Roundup: MLB, Jayson Williams, Sean Taylor

by guest contributor Luke Lee

First things first. Of course, there is the expected bombshell unleashed in the MLB world from the Mitchell Report which implicated dozens of ballplayers for performance enhancing drug use. Notably, players such as Miguel Tejada, Andy Pettitte, Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens were named for violations ranging from steroids to human growth hormones. What’s interesting to read now are reactions to seeing Roger Clemens throw into the fold. We expect to see Bonds there (even now, there’s a separate article stemming from the report describing just how sneaky Bonds and conspirators must’ve been to never have been caught by the MLB) but to see in many ways the Brett Favre of the MLB put under suspcion leads some to say that “Baseball has its white Barry Bonds.”

Also in baseball news, there have been whispers about this for along time but it’s starting to catch wind on blogs and magazines. That is, the “Latinization” of the New York Mets by their GM Omar Minaya. It started with bringing in Pedro Martinez, then Carlos Beltran and then Carlos Delgado, throw in a historic late season meltdown and you have some very angry fans who I think are just starting to hold onto anything to blame. So what better to do then to stick to the old “you’re not playing enough of our boys!” (read: you need to play and sign more white players) approach? First i’ll state what I would hope to be the hugely obvious fact that when White GMs are signing, trading for, drafting, and building franchises around White ballplayers, nobody accuses them of racism. Well, actually, some Black ballplayers do but then they get ostracized by the media of being “angry” and just plain batshit Milton Bradley crazy. Jesus, look at the Oakland Athletics. They seriously have one of the Whitest teams in the entire MLB and yet Billy Beane gets praised for his shrewd trades and knowledge of the minor league farm systems. Secondly, almost every MLB franchise actively recruits in South America with farm system academies. They’re the ones going down there and putting dollars in for prospective talent while also maintaining the vast number of A, AA, AAA baseball teams in the states. So this whole “they’re taking our jobs!” suggestion is just getting tired.

And you thought you’d heard the last of Jayson Williams. Not “I will shoot all you Asian mother******* Jason Williams” but the guy who actually killed a guy Jayson Williams. Turns out that in the current retrial, a judge is reviewing evidence which includes the role of an investigating officer and the use of a racial slur by that officer. The Assistant Prosecutor was quick to point out that this was not the equivalent of, you know, Mark Fuhrman.

It’s been over two weeks since Sean Taylor’s death and a lot of articles, think pieces and rush-to-judgment columns have been written. At first, the media made it seem like the man deserved to die by talking incessantly about his troubled past. Then there was an interview with a friend of his that made it seem like he constantly lived in fear his whole life. A lot of folks I think are embarrassed and ashamed about how they and their news agencies handled this. Jim Trotter can explain it a lot better than I can.

If you took the time to read the Trotter piece, I think it’s worth reading the article also by SI about “ghetto loyalty.”