MLB Steroid Report Career Death Pool

With George Mitchell’s report coming out tomorrow at 2:00, we have the perfect opportunity to claim some local bragging rights. How? By competing in a pool, of course. Here are the rules:

  1. You pick up to ten current or former MLB players whom you predict will be outed in George Mitchell’s report tomorrow. For each player you pick who is named in the report, you will win a number of points equalling their lifetime home run totals, or, for pitchers, their lifetime ERA multiplied by 100.

  2. All picks must be submitted by 1:30 EST tomorrow afternoon (Thursday, December 13th).

  3. “Outed” for the purpose of this contest means being named in the report as a buyer/user of steroids, human growth hormone, or any other performance-enhancing drug.

  4. I will be the final judge in any disputes involving the rules.


Wouldn’t picking a pitcher with a higher ERA reward you?

My ten:

-Livan Hernandez
-Eric Gagne
-Mike Hampton
-Jim Thome
-Adam Dunn
-Miguel Tejada (in honour of today’s trade)
-Lance Berkman
-Curt Schilling
-Roger Clemens
-Derek Lee

Would Picking guys who have been previously implicated be cheating? Like Pudge, etc.

Yeah, it’s a bit of a weakness in the methodology, though I think as a practical matter, it won’t have many effects. I’m open to suggestions on this point, though. Maybe take 5 - lifetime ERA x 100?

Nope! Pick whom you want.

This almost seems like cheating.

  1. Barry Bonds
  2. Jason Giambi
  3. Rafael Palmiero
  4. Frank Thomas
  5. Jim Thome
  6. Curt Schilling
  7. Roger Clemens
  8. Mark McGwire
  9. Sammy Sosa
  10. Jose Canseco

Yeah, 5 minus the ERA times 100 sounds like it might work. I think I’ll stick with my list. I’ll let someone else be the first to use Bonds ;).

Hmmm. I think I’ll guess that A-Rod and Derek Jeter will not be on the list. It’s worth a shot.

1.Barry Bonds
2.Mark McGwire
3.Sammy Sosa
4.Rafael Palmeiro
5.Frank Thomas
6.Jose Canseco
7.Jim Thome
8.Manny Ramirez
9.Gary Sheffield
10.Jason Giambi

  1. David Eckstein
  2. Tim Wakefield
  3. Jamie Moyer
  4. Angel Berroa
  5. Luis Castillo
  6. Bobby Cox
  7. Nick Punto
  8. Omar Vizquel
  9. Abraham Nuñez
  10. Jackie Robinson

VarlosZ, if I were a betting man…

Only 10? I got to 15 without thinking too hard.

  1. Roger Clemens
  2. Jose Canseco
  3. Rafael Palmiero
  4. Miguel Tejeda
  5. Ivan Rodriguez
  6. Juan Gonzalez
  7. Barry Bonds
  8. Mark McGwire
  9. Sammy Sosa
  10. Jason Giambi

I would be hugely surprised if Frank Thomas is on the list. For degree of difficulty, I’ll try to keep my list to guys we don’t already know about:

  1. Roger Clemens (please jesus)
  2. Nomar Garciapara
  3. Gary Sheffield
  4. Andy Pettitte
  5. Albert Pujols
  6. Carl Everett
  7. Johnny Damon
  8. John Rocker
  9. Ivan Rodriguez
  10. Eric Gagne

Nah, that won’t work. You gotta use a counter stat instead of a rate stat to have it make any sense. Your method puts Bobby Thigpen and Tom Glavine on about the same plane and puts Robb Nen ahead of Roger Clemens and Nolan Ryan.

I suggest making it Career Wins * 2 + Career Saves. Or alternatively, Career Wins + Career Saves + (Career Ks / 10). I like the later best.

That way Clemens, Eckersley, Mariano Riviera, Sosa and Barry Bonds are all in about the same ballpark.

I’ll get back to you with my picks!

Incidentally, it seems unfair if we are allowed to include guys that we know about for sure like Palmiero, Bagwell, Giambi, Canseco, Matthew’s Jr. etc. Plus guys like Bonds who admitted using it unknowingly and guys like McGuire who definitely used substances that would eventually be banned. We need better guidelines!

You’re right, the methodology as proposed sort of sucked. I originally thought including a pitching statistic was a mere formality. At any rate, let’s consider your second suggestion above as adopted.

The X factor is that we don’t know whether these people will be included in the MLB report or not. If they’re not mentioned, they get you no points. Seems like a no-brainer to include them in your list, but… well, it’s a gamble.

You could add a wrinkle by subtracting the point value of players chosen who aren’t in the report, thus giving no incentive to just throw out a bunch of big names.

Nah… I’m dreading scorekeeping already.

This is just no fun if we get to pick players who’ve already been caught. I also agree that using ERA for pitchers doesn’t make any sense; wins times 2 makes much more sense. So I’m limiting my picks to players who aren’t known cheats:

  1. Carlos Delgado
  2. Jim Thome
  3. Gary Sheffield
  4. Roger Clemens
  5. Jeff Bagwell (when was he caught? I don’t remember that.)
  6. Ivan Rodriguez
  7. Jim Edmonds
  8. Curt Schilling
  9. Troy Glaus, although I’m skirting my own rule there
  10. Richard Hidalgo

Why? You’re taking a gamble that they’ll be named in the report – by no means a given. It could well be a losing strategy to pick the big names who’ve already been outed.

I can almost guarantee you that neither of these men will be on this list, especially Frank Thomas.