Monday, June 18, 2012

Today's High 5: Clemens "not guilty" ... but probably not Hall bound

5. OK, so Roger Clemens is officially "innocent." Can we please start spending tax dollars on something that actually matters to society?

Like, perhaps, appointing me Czar of Sports Hackery?

4. Yes, Jim Furyk imploded in a collapse that, while not quite Vandeveldeian or Normanian (or even Cubbian), certainly was impressive. And yes, some poser named Eldrick Woods fell apart on Saturday and Sunday, proving for the umpteenth time that he's nowhere near being Tiger again.

But give Webb Simpson credit. While others around him were fading away in the San Fran fog, he was shooting a 68-68 over the weekend on a course that seemed only slightly more fun than a Seamus Romney road trip.

Simpson not only outlasted everybody, he outplayed everybody. He made the most big shots on championship Sunday. And that, my friends, is how you win a U.S. Open.

3. I remember having a discussion at the end of the 2007 NFL season with another scribe during which we concluded that LaDainian Tomlinson was one of the top five running backs we had seen, right up there with Walter Payton, Emmitt Smith, O.J. Simpson and Barry Sanders. (We both are too young to remember Jim Brown.)

After that discussion, L.T. had an injury-plagued 1,100-yard season, followed by two sub-par (for him) years, followed by last season's slog as a specialty back for the mediocre Jets.

And now he has retired at the ripe old age of 32.

Life as an NFL runner is glamorous for a short spell but certainly isn't easy.

2. Finally, LeBron James is looking and acting and sounding and, most importantly, playing like a guy who cares more about winning than anything else.

He's only two wins away from proving he belongs to be mentioned in the same breath as the Michaels, Kobes and Magics.

Of course, he's also only three losses away from having more scorn rained down upon him than any Twitter-era athlete ever has experienced.

Kind of makes you root for him a little, no?

No? OK.

1. So now that Clemens has been found not guilty of perjury and all other charges against him in a trial that cost taxpayers a mere 3 million bucks, what are his chances of getting into the Baseball Hall of Fame?

Answer: not too good.

Based on how voting has gone down the last few years, if a guy even is suspected slightly of having used steroids, he gets the short shrift from the Baseball Writers Association of America. And despite Monday's verdict, more than a little suspicion remains about Roger. He will be shunned big-time.

I am leaning toward voting for him because I believe he had a Hall of Fame record of accomplishment before his juicing reportedly began.

Having said that, I probably won't vote for him this December, when he appears on the ballot for the first time.

I've never been a voter who has differentiated between "regular" Hall of Famers and first-ballot Hall of Famers. It never bothered me that some of my peers reserved first-ballot status only for the best of the best, but I always felt that if a guy deserved a Hall vote, he deserved it ... period.

I think I'll change things up for the few Roid Boyz that I deem Hall worthy. If they're going to get my vote at all, they're going to have to wait for it.

Why? Because I have the power to make them wait, that's why.

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