Skip to main content

A-Rod in Liars Hall of Fame?

By Terence Moore, Special to CNN
August 21, 2013 -- Updated 1550 GMT (2350 HKT)
New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez was suspended in August 2013 after he was accused of having ties to Biogenesis, a now-defunct anti-aging clinic, and taking performance-enhancing drugs. The suspension covers 211 regular-season games through the 2014 season. Rodriguez denied the accusations and said he intends to appeal. Twelve other Major League Baseball players received 50-game suspensions without pay in the Biogenesis probe, and In July, Milwaukee Brewers star outfielder Ryan Braun was suspended for the rest of the season for violating the league's drug policy. New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez was suspended in August 2013 after he was accused of having ties to Biogenesis, a now-defunct anti-aging clinic, and taking performance-enhancing drugs. The suspension covers 211 regular-season games through the 2014 season. Rodriguez denied the accusations and said he intends to appeal. Twelve other Major League Baseball players received 50-game suspensions without pay in the Biogenesis probe, and In July, Milwaukee Brewers star outfielder Ryan Braun was suspended for the rest of the season for violating the league's drug policy.
HIDE CAPTION
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
Drug scandals in sports
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Terence Moore: As he faces suspension, A-Rod plays martyr besieged by forces out to get him
  • He says don't buy it. It's denial common to fallen sports stars, from Pete Rose to Armstrong
  • He says in Liars Hall of Fame, first come accusations, then denial, and confession. Why?
  • Moore: Lying sports stars can't accept fall; think if they repeat lie enough, it'll be true. Don't buy it

Editor's note: Terence Moore has been a sports columnist of more than three decades. He has worked for the Cincinnati Enquirer, the San Francisco Examiner, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and AOL Sports. Follow him on Twitter

(CNN) -- Whenever Alex Rodriguez — or his DMs (designated mouthpieces) -- discuss the evil ways of his haters these days, it sounds believable. To hear the DMs for the man they call "A-Rod" tell it, Rodriguez's bosses on the New York Yankees are out to get him, and the same goes for the entire establishment of Major League Baseball. I mean, Team A-Rod would swear on a stack of trading cards that the world is forcing this guy to struggle up a hill with a cross made of old Louisville Sluggers.

Poor thing.

I'm not buying any of this, by the way, and neither should you. It doesn't matter that the tongues for those on Team A-Rod are as smooth as Rodriguez's hitting once was while he was evolving into the most prolific slugger of his time, before a five-year slide to ordinary or less.

Terence Moore
Terence Moore

Denial, denial, denial. Not about Rodriguez's likely use of performance-enhancing drugs within the last few years (he has admitted that he used them when he played for the Texas Rangers from 2001-2003). Team A-Rod has moved around that subject on its tippy toes. They mostly issue denials that Rodriguez isn't into misleading baseball officials, the Yankees, his teammates, fans and even his absolutely pristine self about anything at any time.

Just thinking ...

Haven't we seen this middle part of a three-station cycle before from Ryan Braun, Lance Armstrong, Rafael Palmeiro, Marion Jones, Pete Rose, Mark McGwire and Michael Vick? Yes, we have, and these figures are among those in the ever-expanding Liars Hall of Fame. For induction, you must ace the ability to move quickly from The Accusations to The Denial, and before you reach The Confession, you must challenge the world record of politicians for denying and denying some more.

"I did not bet on baseball."

"I have never, ever used performance-enhancing drugs.

"Everybody wants to know what I am on. What am I on? I'm on my bike busting my (butt) six hours a day. What are you on?"

"Let me start by telling you this: I have never used steroids, period. I don't know how to say it any more clearly than that. Never."

"This is all B.S. I am completely innocent."

The rise and fall of Alex Rodriguez
Rose: Don't make one guy the example
CNN Explains: PEDs

"I take these charges very seriously and look forward to clearing my good name."

If you're keeping score, the authors of those previous whoppers were Rose, Jones, Armstrong, Palmeiro (as he wagged his finger at a U.S. congressman on Capitol Hill), Braun and Vick.

What's up with this?

"Athletes get hooked on notoriety and fame. I mean, when is the last time they had to buy a meal or a drink?" said Patrick Devine, who spent years as a sports psychologist for the Atlanta Braves before returning to private practice. He also serves as a professor at Kennesaw State University in Georgia. Added Devine, "They think everybody loves them, because there are so many people looking at them as their heroes.

"So, athletes start to think that, because of their great deeds and because of the championships they may have won, the public in the end is going to forgive them for whatever they decide to do."

Opinion: How A-Rod let us down

That's why, after The Accusations and The Denial, members of the Liars Hall of Fame don't bother with The Confession until evidence surfaces to confirm their guilt beyond a shadow of a doubt. Then they throw themselves to the mercy of their fans, but only after they have slashed and burned a bunch of innocent folks along the way.

As a result, this Rodriguez thing is about to get creepier, because it feels so much like everything I just wrote.

There is Major League Baseball claiming Rodriguez joined 12 other players in purchasing and using performance-enhancing drugs from a clinic in south Florida called Biogenesis. According to reports, those same baseball officials say Rodriguez tried to hinder their investigation by lying and by encouraging others to do the same. There also are reports from CBS's 60 Minutes that Rodriguez used some of his associates to squeal on other drug-using players in an attempt to cover his pinstripes. Rodriguez denies this.

Which brings us to this: Follow the money. The New York Times reported this week that Rodriguez has retained at least six law firms and two public relations firms. Among other things, the paper said those A-Rod entities are trying to prove the Yankees and Major League Baseball are trying to take away as much of what remains of Rodriguez's original $275 million contract as possible.

Baseball officials had slapped Rodriguez with a 211-game suspension that would keep the 38-year-old third baseman out of the game until after the start of the 2015 season. He appealed the decision, and it will be months before the results are known. If the suspension is upheld, Rodriguez will lose approximately $34 million of his salary.

Until then, when it's raining, we'll have Rodriguez telling us the sunshine is beating against his shades.

"It's the same thing as somebody suffering from alcoholism. Denial," Devine said. "Now, in the case of some of the people we're talking about, they just look at everything (PED use, conniving, lying) as simply, 'This is what I have to do to compete at the highest level,' and in their mind -- morally and ethically -- it's not wrong. It's also like, 'If I do get caught, what's going to happen to me?' I mean, we're eventually going to put Pete Rose in the Hall of Fame, and that sort of thing allows athletes to go into this denial thing along the way to being so convincing.

Opinion: Is doping at work and in class OK?

"To them, it's really like that old kid's line you hear: If you start telling a lie long enough, you start to believe it."

Yeah, but the rest of us don't have to believe it.

Follow us on Twitter @CNNOpinion.

Join us on Facebook/CNNOpinion.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Terence Moore

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 2006 GMT (0406 HKT)
Timothy Stanley says Lewinsky is shamelessly playing the victim in her affair with Bill Clinton, humiliating Hillary Clinton again and aiding her critics
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 0102 GMT (0902 HKT)
Imagine being rescued from modern slavery, only to be charged with a crime, writes John Sutter
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1600 GMT (0000 HKT)
Tidal flooding used to be a relatively rare occurrence along the East Coast. Not anymore, write Melanie Fitzpatrick and Erika Spanger-Siegfried.
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
Carol Costello says activists, writers, politicians have begun discussing their abortions. But will that new approach make a difference on an old battleground?
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1312 GMT (2112 HKT)
Sigrid Fry-Revere says the National Organ Transplant Act has caused more Americans to die waiting for an organ than died in both World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1851 GMT (0251 HKT)
Crystal Wright says racist remarks like those made by black Republican actress Stacey Dash do nothing to get blacks to join the GOP
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 2207 GMT (0607 HKT)
Mel Robbins says by telling her story, Monica Lewinsky offers a lesson in confronting humiliating mistakes while keeping her head held high
October 20, 2014 -- Updated 1329 GMT (2129 HKT)
Cornell Belcher says the story of the "tea party wave" in 2010 was bogus; it was an election determined by ebbing Democratic turnout
October 20, 2014 -- Updated 2012 GMT (0412 HKT)
Les Abend says pilots want protocols, preparation and checklists for all contingencies; at the moment, controlling a deadly disease is out of their comfort zone
October 20, 2014 -- Updated 0336 GMT (1136 HKT)
David Weinberger says an online controversy that snowballed from a misogynist attack by gamers into a culture war is a preview of the way news is handled in a world of hashtag-fueled scandal
October 20, 2014 -- Updated 1223 GMT (2023 HKT)
Julian Zelizer says Paul Krugman makes some good points in his defense of President Obama but is premature in calling him one of the most successful presidents.
October 20, 2014 -- Updated 0221 GMT (1021 HKT)
Conservatives can't bash and slash government and then suddenly act surprised if government isn't there when we need it, writes Sally Kohn
October 22, 2014 -- Updated 1205 GMT (2005 HKT)
ISIS is looking to take over a good chunk of the Middle East -- if not the entire Muslim world, write Peter Bergen and Emily Schneider.
October 20, 2014 -- Updated 1300 GMT (2100 HKT)
The world's response to Ebola is its own sort of tragedy, writes John Sutter
October 17, 2014 -- Updated 2033 GMT (0433 HKT)
Hidden away in Russian orphanages are thousands of children with disabilities who aren't orphans, whose harmful treatment has long been hidden from public view, writes Andrea Mazzarino
October 18, 2014 -- Updated 1722 GMT (0122 HKT)
When you hear "trick or treat" this year, think "nudge," writes John Bare
October 18, 2014 -- Updated 0442 GMT (1242 HKT)
The more than 200 kidnapped Nigerian schoolgirls have become pawns in a larger drama, writes Richard Joseph.
October 17, 2014 -- Updated 1345 GMT (2145 HKT)
Peggy Drexler said Amal Alamuddin was accused of buying into the patriarchy when she changed her name to Clooney. But that was her choice.
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 2043 GMT (0443 HKT)
Ford Vox says the CDC's Thomas Frieden is a good man with a stellar resume who has shown he lacks the unique talents and vision needed to confront the Ebola crisis
October 18, 2014 -- Updated 0858 GMT (1658 HKT)
How can such a numerically small force as ISIS take control of vast swathes of Syria and Iraq?
October 17, 2014 -- Updated 1342 GMT (2142 HKT)
How big a threat do foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq pose to the West? It's a question that has been much on the mind of policymakers and commentators.
October 17, 2014 -- Updated 1221 GMT (2021 HKT)
More than a quarter-million American women served honorably in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Now they are home, we have an obligation to help them transition back to civilian life.
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 2027 GMT (0427 HKT)
Paul Begala says Rick Scott's deeply weird refusal to begin a debate because rival Charlie Crist had a fan under his podium spells disaster for the Florida governor--delighting Crist
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 0407 GMT (1207 HKT)
The longer we wait to engage on Ebola, the more limited our options will become, says Marco Rubio.
October 15, 2014 -- Updated 1153 GMT (1953 HKT)
Democratic candidates who run from President Obama in red states where he is unpopular are making a big mistake, says Donna Brazile
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 0429 GMT (1229 HKT)
At some 7 billion people, the world can sometimes seem like a crowded place. But if the latest estimates are to be believed, then in less than a century it is going to feel even more so -- about 50% more crowded, says Evan Fraser
October 20, 2014 -- Updated 1653 GMT (0053 HKT)
Paul Callan says the Ebola situation is pointing up the need for better leadership
October 15, 2014 -- Updated 2245 GMT (0645 HKT)
Nurses are the unsung heroes of the Ebola outbreak. Yet, there are troubling signs we're failing them, says John Sutter
October 15, 2014 -- Updated 1700 GMT (0100 HKT)
Dean Obeidallah says it's a mistake to give up a business name you've invested energy in, just because of a new terrorist group
October 15, 2014 -- Updated 2301 GMT (0701 HKT)
Fear of Ebola is contagious, writes Mel Robbins; but it's time to put the disease in perspective
October 14, 2014 -- Updated 1744 GMT (0144 HKT)
Oliver Kershaw says that if Big Tobacco is given monopoly of e-cigarette products, public health will suffer.
October 18, 2014 -- Updated 1335 GMT (2135 HKT)
Stop thinking your job will make you happy.
October 15, 2014 -- Updated 0208 GMT (1008 HKT)
Ruben Navarrette says it's time to deal with another scandal involving the Secret Service — one that leads directly into the White House.
October 14, 2014 -- Updated 1125 GMT (1925 HKT)
Americans who choose to fight for militant groups or support them are young and likely to be active in jihadist social media, says Peter Bergen
October 13, 2014 -- Updated 1303 GMT (2103 HKT)
Stephanie Coontz says 11 years ago only one state allowed same sex marriage. Soon, some 60% of Americans will live where gays can marry. How did attitudes change so quickly?
October 14, 2014 -- Updated 2004 GMT (0404 HKT)
Legalizing assisted suicide seems acceptable when focusing on individuals. But such laws would put many at risk of immense harm, writes Marilyn Golden.
October 13, 2014 -- Updated 1307 GMT (2107 HKT)
Julian Zelizer says the issues are huge, but both parties are wrestling with problems that alienate voters
October 13, 2014 -- Updated 2250 GMT (0650 HKT)
Mel Robbins says the town's school chief was right to cancel the season, but that's just the beginning of what needs to be done
October 11, 2014 -- Updated 1543 GMT (2343 HKT)
He didn't discover that the world was round, David Perry writes. So what did he do?
ADVERTISEMENT