By now I’m sure most of you have read the Jason Grimsley affidavit. And have read the article at Deadspin.com, which an unnamed source cites Chris Mihlfield, Albert Pujols’ (and Mike Sweeney’s) personal trainer and very close personal friend as the "former employee and personal fitness trainer to several Major League Baseball players" where Grimsley there scored amphetamines, steroids and Human Growth Hormone. What it does not say is that Mihlfield was the source of those drugs. He just allegedly referred Grimsley to a source.
Since then, Mihfield has denied any of those allegations, saying that Grimsley’s lawyer and Grimsley himself has said that it is not Mihfield’s name on the affidavit. He seemed pretty hoppin’ mad, and Albert is pretty mad too. I’d expect a statement forthcoming from El Hombre. Mike Sweeney has already spoken out on a radio show as well, saying he "would bet every last penny that they are not guilty of any wrong doing." I tend to believe Sweeney, as both he and Albert seem to be the classiest of guys, but sadly we’ve heard these denials before. (*Raffy*)
Deadspin doesn’t back down on it’s source, but rather makes what they are saying clearer and seems Leitch seems unmoved. They did not say Albert was using HGH, amphetamines or steroids. They do make the Grimsley to Pujols connection, connecting Sweeney, Mihlfield, Albert and Grimsley together at a hitting clinic. So what is that supposed to imply? That doesn’t amount to really amount to much at all to me.
What do I make of this so far? I’m not sure. I think Deadspin may want to reconsider their sources, though I can’t say I fully blame them as it was a pretty big scoop (and a very disheartening one at that.) Will Leitch, author of Deadspin is a huge fan of the Cardinals, I’m sure he like any Card fan would never want to hear anything connecting Albert to cheating and steroids. But Deadspin is what it is, as in it’s a place that slams and pokes fun at pro athletes at every turn. Not that that’s all bad, nor does it discredit the story. And, I mean Grimsley himself said Mihlfield was not on the affadavit I sorta tend to believe that.
I think what this boils down to is that this whole thing is a commentary on baseball today. We don’t know who’s clean or not, we all have our unspoken (or spoken) suspicions, and I can honestly understand (fair or unfair) why folks would think Albert is juicing. He’s young, he’s big, he’s balding, he has acne at times, and he hits like he’s out of this world. I get it. (For the record, I’m the same age as Albert and I’ve gained 25 pounds in the last 3 years, I get zits at times, and don’t have the same hairline I had years ago, so that doesn’t mean a whole lot.) But it is hard to believe anyone tearing the cover off the ball is clean these days. And another thing, Pujols saying that MLB can test him anyday doesn’t mean squat anymore. We all know there are ways of covering things, and there are things like HGH that aren’t detectable in urine samples.
But, when the day is done, in my heart of hearts I believe Albert is clean. Maybe it’s his character off the field, maybe it’s the way he carries himself, and maybe I really do believe that while he’s too good to be true, he is true. It’s not impossible to believe that Pujols can be au naturale’. And I want to believe it, I want to be able to believe what he says. I want to be able to point to my future children and say, there’s Albert Pujols, the best there ever was. And as thing unravels, I think I will. I may be a bit reticent now in this day we live in, but I hope that I can be less as the days, weeks, months and seasons go by.