The suspension of 13 baseball players this week for violations of Major League Baseball's drug policy is the biggest scandal in the game since the 1919 Black Sox scandal.
Members of the Chicago White Sox, including outfielder "Shoeless" Joe Jackson, were found to have conspired with gamblers to throw the 1919 World Series to the Cincinnati Reds.
Although the players were acquitted in a trial, eight members of the team were banned from baseball for life by the commissioner, Kenesaw Mountain Landis. Supposedly, Jackson failed to respond to a young fan at the trial who begged him to "Say it ain't so, Joe."
This year's scandal revolves around players' ties to a Florida clinic that allegedly supplied players with "performance-enhancing drugs." Biogenesis of America is said to have provided the drugs to the players.
The largest suspension - 211 games - went to New York Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez. In addition to allegedly using the drugs, MLB proclaims that Rodriguez tried to impede its investigation.
Rodriguez is the only one of the players who is appealing his suspension.
In recent days, Rodriguez has defended his decision to go to arbitration on the basis that he wants "the process to work." He has not stridently denied MLB's charges against him since the suspensions were announced. He simply maintains he has the right to have an arbiter hear his case.
Like the child at Shoeless Joe's trial, we'd have a little more sympathy for Rodriguez if he were loudly maintaining his innocence. Until he "says it ain't so," one has to assume that it is.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.