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"You gotta believe"

Migrant Redbird

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But I'm afraid to do it. That's what "The Steroids Era" has done to baseball.

USA Today: Focus of Cardinals first baseman Pujols: Higher power

Sports Illustrated: The Power To Believe

A quote from the SI article:

"If he ever got involved in that [steroid] stuff, I would be the first one to kill him," Dee Dee [Pujols] says suddenly.

She would not be the only one to be brokenhearted. Albert Pujols knows this. It is why he felt so betrayed when a local television station sent a crew to his St. Louis restaurant to follow up on the charge that Pujols was named in baseball's Mitchell Report, the findings of a 20-month-long investigation into the use of performance-enhancing drugs in the sport. Pujols's name was, in fact, not in the report. "They tried to ruin my image," he says.

He has constantly denied using steroids. His reasoning has stayed consistent: "I fear God too much to do any stupid thing like that." He also knows that more or less every player has denied using steroids. "We are under a dark cloud," he says. "Nobody believes anything [players say]."

And that takes us all the way back to the point: Albert Pujols knows that people, many people, do not believe him. He knows that some bloggers out there simply assume that he has been using—if you Google "Albert Pujols" and "steroids" you will get about 100,000 hits—and he knows that talk-radio hosts have spent time breaking down his 6'3", 230-pound physique. He knows that by putting up good numbers, he gives many people all the evidence they need.

There is no way for someone like me (an agnostic) to have an unquestioning faith that Pujols is authentic. I believe that he is, but my beliefs are tempered with the assurance that all too many idols have feet of clay.

"Brokenhearted?" Yes, I think that accurately describes what an "A-Roid" like revelation would do to me.

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I don't believe him.

Based upon what?

There are plenty of reasons to be suspicious. Raised in the Dominican Republic. Best player since Ruth, Williams, Mays, etc. (Which means all those previous superstars must have been doing steroids too, if that's the best rationale you can find.)

Lots of reasons for suspicions about every player, but no particular reason whatsoever to think that one particular player is lying.

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