Tim Raines, Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez and Jeff Bagwell were voted into baseball’s Hall of Fame that might not have been the biggest story in the voting. Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens received over 50 % of the vote for the first time.

While there were whispers about Bagwell and Rodriguez using PEDs, Raines wasn’t dogged by such rumors. The fact that Bagwell and Rodriguez were voted in and Bonds and Clemens gained so much in the voting indicates a change in thinking regard baseball’s so called “Steroid Era”.

I’ve got a secret.

Voting for baseball’s Hall of Fame is becoming increasingly difficult.

Voters have been in the position of determining who used PED’s and who didn’t. It seems that some have given up trying or decided they just don’t care. It’s understandable, but it’s still a shame the game as gotten to that. That old saying, “cheaters never win” doesn’t apply in baseball.

You can’t get there from here.

Some say “everybody did it”. I don’t believe it. When Hall of Fame members like Ryne Sandberg, Frank Thomas and Andre Dawson say they did take PEDs, I’m inclined to believe them. The PED mess baseball is dealing with involves conflicting attitudes that can’t be reconciled. Winning at all costs, play fair, and money above all else aren’t compatible.

It’s not if you cheat, it’s how you cheat.

During his playing days, Gaylord Perry was notorious for throwing a spitter. Pretty much everybody knew Gaylord threw a spitter, but that illegal pitch helped him to a hall of fame career.

Baseball looked the other way during the height of the steroid era.

When players started getting huge, it’s hard to believe MLB thought it was the result of players using Flintstone vitamins.

Plus it’s one thing for a guy’s body to get big, but for his head to get to be the size of a suitcase is a bit unusual. When it came to checking out steroid use, then Baseball Commissioner, Bud Selig, made Inspector Clouseau look like Sherlock Holmes. What possible reason could there be for that tight of oversight?

Chicks (and other fans) dig the long ball.

Baseball enjoyed resurgence behind a barrage of homeruns. Barry Bonds, Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa led the way. When revenue and ethics compete in baseball, revenue wins. When steroid use got to be too much too ignore, baseball pled ignorance. It’s a tough sell.

Bud Selig is now in the Hall of Fame.

Bud Selig became concerned about his legacy as his time as Baseball Commissioner wound down. Unfortunately, getting tough on steroids after using juiced up players to build the popularity of the game makes for poor optics. Maybe Bud’s place in the Hall of Fame came be overlooking the PED users' wing.

A little late for a cleanup

At this point, baseball worrying about its purity is like Madonna worrying about her virginity.

That ship sailed a long time ago.

A modest proposal (with apologies to Jonathan Swift)

Since there’s always speculation about who used PEDs and who didn’t, why not ask players eligible for the Hall to sign a document stating they didn’t use steroids. Or if they used steroids to fess up. If their statement is later proven false, kick them out of the Hall.

Look for growing apathy concerning the Hall.

In addition to questions involving PEDs and Pete Rose (Pete’s a case unto himself) pettiness of voters comes into play. A case in point is Ron Santo. Everyone knew Ron really wanted to get into the Hall before he died. He didn’t make it. Apparently dying improved Ron’s credentials. Between the PED questions, double standards and pettiness, it’s increasingly hard to care about baseball’s Hall of Fame. Much like their All-Star Game.