Yes, Melkman is talented. Even if he doesn’t put up the stunning numbers he did in 2012, he’s still a good player and he’ll help the line up. From 2005 on he’s had an OPS over 700. The Jays deal, considering Melky’s upside, is reasonable—not to long, not to expensive. AA likes guys with dirty pasts because dirty pasts make for good value and that’s exactly what you get here: dirty, good value.
The concern I have isn’t so much that Melky’s got skillz, it’s that he cheated. Specifically, it’s how he cheated. I think we can all agree people get popped for doing things they shouldn’t in this game. I’d still play with most of those players—I have played with some of them. It’s a risk and gamble they take and I understand why they do it: money and opportunity. I don’t agree with it, but I understand it, and if they’re willing to take their lumps like men if they get busted, fine, go ahead and play with fire. I can’t stop you, and locker room code forbids I turn you in. I have to trust MLB drug testing to do it’s job, and I can only hope you take your punishment seriously and treat your teammates with some class if you end up catching yourself on fire.
it says something about a peson to cheat. That something isn’t good. It says a lot more when they do it, and, after getting caught redhanded, try to build a fake industry of redhands to hide in. The website fiasco, the fake internet site, the agent kicking up dust… Dude, you cheated. Own it. If not for the sake of class, at least so any future teammates feel comfortable around you—which, is something Jays players are going to have to come to terms with now. Some of whom have had to fight off accusations and associations with PED’s themselves.
Melky did own his error, eventually, but how he got to that point is what concerns me: Melky Gate, it was once referred to. Did the Jays just unload a pariah in Yunel Escobar—who, for the record, I didn’t think was a terrible person, just uneducated decision maker—and acquire a bigger one? Time will tell. You can prove a lot of things with your play. Personal integrity isn’t one of them. Jays fans are right to be excited about Melky as he could bring some real power to the 2013 line up. But, they are also right to be skeptical he wont end up being a liability with several intangible negatives.
[categories baseball, blue jays, MLB]