Melky Cabrera was a marginal fourth outfielder for the Yankees for several years. He was a consistent .260 hitter with a decent glove and healthy enthusiasm for the game. After the Yankees showed no interest in keeping him, he was picked up by the Braves for a season and continued his pedestrian career. Not a bad player by any stretch--think 250 at bats and back-up left-fielder--and fine for rounding out a 25 man roster.
Then he goes to Kansas City, a cellar-dweller team with a fraction of the line-up strength that protected Melky in New York and Atlanta, but has a remarkably strong season at the plate.
Like many All Star players, Kansas City was a stepping stone for a move to a big market team which was, in his case, San Francisco.
Melky puts up MVP type numbers there and is leading the league in hitting when, whack!, he gets nailed with a 50 game suspension for the use of performance enhancing drugs.
Is there any doubt whatsoever that the "Melk Man" was delivered into the baseball's promised land with the help of whatever illegal substance he put into his body?
Apparently, if you are a GM in Toronto, well, yes, there is doubt. That's because the Blue Jays foolishly gave Melky 16 million over two years last week to don the blue and white and roam left field for them.
If I were a GM and didn't care about the backlash I would face by hiring a "cheat," I could see offering him one year at 2 million to see if he was still a shadow of his performance-enhanced self. But 16 million! Over two years!
Is there any reason to wonder why these players take the chance of getting caught using PEDs?
In Major League baseball, crime can pay millions.