Schilling to Rocket: Give back Cy Youngs
Vail, CO Colorado
BOSTON ” Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling called on Roger Clemens to give up the four Cy Young Awards he’s won since 1997 if he can’t clear his name from allegations that he used steroids to prolong and enhance his career.
“If he doesn’t do that then there aren’t many options as a fan for me other than to believe his career 192 wins and three Cy Youngs he won prior to 1997 were the end,” Schilling wrote Wednesday in his blog, 38pitches.com. “From that point on the numbers were attained through using (performance-enhancing drugs). Just like I stated about Jose (Canseco), if that is the case with Roger, the four Cy Youngs should go to the rightful winners, and the numbers should go away if he cannot refute the accusations.”
Schilling noted in the 3,200-word posting that he was a fan of the seven-time Cy Young Award winner who owed much of his success to a stern talking-to he received from Clemens when Schilling was a young pitching prospect.
“His ‘undressing’ of me and lecture were a major turning point,” Schilling said. “I’ve always respected his career accomplishments and regarded him as the greatest pitcher to ever play the game.”
But, having called on Canseco to give up his 1988 AL MVP award, and noting also the unrefuted evidence against Barry Bonds, Schilling acknowledged he could not avoid questioning Clemens’ accomplishments as well.
“Can you separate what Barry is accused of from what Roger is accused of?” Schilling said. “If … both of these men end up being caught, what does that say about this game, us as athletes and the future of the sport and our place in it? The greatest pitcher and greatest hitter of all time are currently both being implicated, one is being prosecuted, for events surrounding and involving the use of performance enhancing drugs. That (stinks). … The sport needs fixing.”
Clemens was the biggest name in the report by former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell that detailed the widespread use of performance-enhancing drugs in baseball. Clemens has denied using performance-enhancing substances.
The Rocket’s last four Cy Young Awards came in 1997, 1998, 2001 and 2004. Many of the allegations against Clemens in the Mitchell Report came from former trainer Brian McNamee, though none pertain to 1997 or 2004. Mitchell wrote McNamee said he injected Clemens with steroids in 1998 while with the Toronto Blue Jays, and steroids and human growth hormone in 2000 and 2001, while with the New York Yankees.
Schilling commended those who’ve apologized for using performance-enhancing drugs, and called on everyone accused to prove their innocence or apologize for their mistakes.
“The world is full of good to great people that have made mistakes of this magnitude or worse,” Schilling wrote. “These guys made mistakes, and I do mean mistakes. They didn’t accidentally do this, this was a conscious decision with far reaching implications and they should be held accountable.”
While calling Canseco’s “entire career, all of it, is a sham” and saying “he was never in his life a major league player,” Schilling also acknowledged that many of Canseco’s claims about other steroid users have been corroborated.
“He has broken the flood gates on a topic that went unspoken on for far too long,” Schilling said.
The runners-up in Clemens’ last four Cy Young-winning years were Randy Johnson (1997 and 2004), Pedro Martinez (1998) and Mark Mulder (2001).
Schilling was among those who testified in March 2005 to a U.S. House committee investigating steroids, along with Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro. The same committee has scheduled hearings for Jan. 15.
Clemens has not been asked to attend, though it’s possible that the committee could decide to ask Clemens or other players to appear that day ” or at a future hearing, if there is one.
AP Sports Writer Howard Fendrich in Washington contributed to this report.