Earlier this month Mark McGwire fell well short of election to the Baseball Hall of Fame, mainly as a result of suspicion that he took performance enhancing drugs during his career. McGwire compounded the problem by appearing before Congress and refusing to talk about anything that happened in the past, missing out on the absolution offered to Jason Giambi, Andy Pettitte and other players who came clean about their drug use.
McGwire's taking another blow now that Deadspin has published details of a book proposal being shopped by his professional bodybuilder brother. Jay McGwire alleges that his older brother saw what steroids could do for a physique and started asking for them. Little brother obliged and watched as Mark "saved" baseball during the 1998 season.
Although the two brothers are no longer on speaking terms, Jay is adamant that his reasons for coming forward now have nothing to do with spite.
"Mark is a man I think most would like to forgive because his reason wasn’t nefarious—it was for survival. My bringing the truth to surface about Mark is out of love. I want Mark to live in truth to see the light, to come to repentance so he can live in freedom—which is the only way to live. "
Out of love ... for money. Deadspin reports that the proposal has been turned down by several publishing houses, and will probably need to be self-published now that the only tidbits worth reading have been revealed to the public. That's a good thing, because no brother should benefit from a modern day Cain and Abel reenactment.
As for his steroid use, McGwire should probably just come forward at this point and own up to whatever he did. He may never get into the Hall and won't ever recapture the public's admiration, but he doesn't deserve being used as a punching bag for the gain of others. He also doesn't deserve his status as scapegoat for baseball looking the other way on steroids when the real blame should be pointed toward the men who ran the game and profited from his exploits.