Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Cameron Speaks

Mike Cameron discusses his 25-game suspension with USA Today's Bob Nightengale. Cameron twice tested positive for amphetamines in 2007, and is therefore subject to six random drug tests this season.

"But there's nothing I can do about it now. I've got to be so careful. I can't just pick up something at a gas station or a GNC store. …"
In the story Cameron also reveals that he has scheduled an appointment with a neurologist concerning aftereffects of his 2005 collision with Carlos Beltran.*
"I'm fine physically," Cameron says, "but mentally, I'm not so sure. It's just little things. Lapses here and there. I may be fine, but it can't hurt. I just want to find out for sure, and whether I need anything to help me."
Everything I hear about the type of player he is and type of teammate he is in the clubhouse is very positive, but honestly, I just don't have a good vibe about the Mike Cameron signing. I obviously hope I'm wrong, but I'm worried that this could blow up in the Brewers face. If Cameron fails one if his tests, it would carry an 80-game suspension. On top of the 25 games he's already serving, that would in essence wipe out his season. One little lapse at a gas station, and boom. Something could come of this neurological thing that would case him to miss time or hurt his play on the field. He could get injured. There are just a lot of what-ifs.

Ned Yost would be wise to pick a center fielder out of spring training and stick with him for the whole first 25 games, rather than using the rotating, platoon, musical chair system that he seems to be planning on. Tony Gwynn would be my pick. Gwynn has two triples and a home run so far this spring, tying him for the team lead in extra base hits. He is the only other natural center fielder on the team. In center field, more so than any other position, the Brewers need a Plan B. Playing Gwynn in center for the first 25 games would tell you if you have one.

*[There used to be a YouTube video of the collision, but MLB Advanced Media in their pompous arrogance, ordered it removed.]

UPDATE:
Brew Crew Ball (A great Brewers blog which I thank profusely for linking to my stuff; if you didn’t come from there you should really go check them out.) asks:
"Mike Cameron is a professional baseball player, with access to all the training staff and other help that comes with it. Even if he wasn't, he's a millionaire many times over. Why, with all the resources available to him, is he grabbing energy drinks and the like at a gas station?"
My response: You could have asked that same question last year and look what happened. Ball players do all sorts of stuff that us common folk would think would be deterred by the allure of money. Nobody understands it, but it happens. I’m just saying that with the clunked head thing with Beltran, and now the neurologist thing, and the fact that Cameron would even bring up “picking something up at a gas station”, I don’t know – it just seems like a lot more volatile deal than I wish it were.

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