JEFF PEARLMAN

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The cowardice of Joe Girardi

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So today Joe Girardi, manager of the New York Yankees, predictably ripped the upcoming ARod biography, written by Selena Roberts. “I have some issues with it, that it’s interesting how the book date got moved up now,” Girardi said, “and I get tired of answering these questions. I don’t understand why someone would write a book like this anyway, and some people may not care to hear that but I don’t understand.

“There’s things in my life that I’m not proud of, that I’ve done,” he said. “I wouldn’t want my kids to have to deal with it. You know, I tell my kids that daddy makes mistakes. I do, and I apologize for them. I say ‘Daddy’s not perfect.’ It’s not necessarily something that I would want them to read about all the time and to be the focus. This man wants to be a father, too.”

I understand where Girardi is coming from. I really do. That being said, I am soooooo sick and soooooo tired of the long-voiceless baseball people remaining completely mum and seemingly indifferent when it comes to the usage of PHD, then defending those who cheated. You feel bad for ARod? How about feeling bad for the players who lost work/income/a lifestyle because they chose not to cheat, while men like Rodriguez did? How about speaking up for them, instead of following the bulls— code of defending your “guys,” whether they’re worthy or not? Seriously, where the hell was Girardi’s voice when it concerned his peers seeking out an unfair edge? You have every right to slam the media. But it’s often the easiest thing to do.

After this column ran three days ago, I received much angry mail—mainly fans telling me I was just trying to help Selena sell books. Truthfully, while I like and respect Roberts, I have no stake in how her sales turn out. What I do have a stake in is baseball becoming a clean game. To me, that means calling out as many of the cheaters as possible; making it clear that, if you choose to use PHD, you will be caught.

Lastly, Girardi questioned why Selena would write such a book—and I find that silly. Why’d she write a book? Because ARod is a huge national figure, and we know little about him. If these guys want the praise and the endorsements and the hoopla, well, we should then be allowed to tell the truth. Whether it’s ugly or not.

** PS: All that said, I found Jason Whitlock’s column on Selena to be an interesting take. Whenever SI.com readers e-mail me about Selena, they almost always mention the Duke thing. I agree with Jason—we in the media are waaaaay too easy on one another.