Just from the conspicuously large group of those who at some point in their now-blemished careers called Yankee Stadium home, Mitchell unearthed a formidable four-man rotation for the proverbial weekend series, beginning with the Texas-sized catch of his lengthy report, Roger Clemens.
Hal Bodley: "Baseball needs forward, not backward, thinking"
-- New York Times
From the smoldering ashes of one of its most dreadful moments, baseball must now move forward -- out from under the dark cloud caused by steroids. And enjoy a much-needed breath of fresh air.
-- USA Today
Thomas Boswell: "The Rocket's descent"
Now, Roger Clemens joins Barry Bonds in baseball's version of hell. It's a slow burn that lasts a lifetime, then, after death, lingers as long as the game is played and tongues can wag. In baseball, a man's triumphs and his sins are immortal. The pursuit of one often leads to the other. And those misdeeds are seldom as dark as their endless punishment.
Shoeless Joe Jackson, an illiterate outfielder who hit like a demon in the 1919 World Series, but neglected to blow the whistle on his crooked teammates, died with his good name as black as their Sox. Pete Rose, who bet on his team, but never against it, finally confessed. It could be good for his soul, and buys him dinner at my house any night, but may never get him into Cooperstown. Now, they have company: two giants of our time, just as humbled, though no less tarnished.
Mark Bradley: "Years of baseball history tarnished"
-- Washington Post
The only run scored on the night the Braves won their only World Series was generated by David Justice, who was named Thursday in the Mitchell Report. There was no implication therein that Justice used steroids or HGH as a Braves player -- indeed, Justice maintained to investigators he'd never used a performance-enhancing substance -- but it makes you wonder.
Then again, the Braves were undone in Game 5 of the 1993 NLCS by a 10th-inning homer from Lenny Dykstra, also named. They were beaten 1-0 in Game 5 of the 1996 World Series by Andy Pettitte, also named. They were beaten twice in the 1997 NLCS by Kevin Brown, also named. They were beaten in three separate postseasons by Roger Clemens, also named.
Joe Davidson: "Regretful Santangelo comes clean"
-- Atlanta Journal-Constitution
F.P. Santangelo said the most trying part was sitting his two sons down and telling them he was a baseball cheat.
Santangelo, a Sacramento morning radio host, was named in the report by former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell as someone who used performance-enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball.
Santangelo said in an interview that part of the report is accurate -- that he took human growth hormones. But he insisted that alleged use of the drug Deca-Durabolin, an anabolic steroid, and testosterone was false, despite the Mitchell report findings.
-- The Sacramento Bee
Jon Heyman: "Selig in favor of independent testing"
If baseball commissioner Bud Selig was hurt by the claim in Sen. George Mitchell's report that Selig didn't respond quickly enough to the sport's steroid problem, it certainly didn't dissuade Selig from embracing almost every detail of Mitchell's report.
Selig indicated, in fact, that he plans to follow each and every one of Sen. Mitchell's detailed recommendations. That includes Mitchell's suggestion that the steroid program be administered independently. "I feel it is the right thing to do," Selig said. "I really don't care anymore."
Jerry Izenberg: "Facing baseball's deadly culture"
So now the great debate begins. There are 101 nuances you can take away from the Mitchell Report. But before you go with the union and focus only on the clear use of hearsay evidence ... or go with baseball when it says "well, we eventually tried to improve things" ... or go with the kind of primate fans who babble that their favorite player needed steroids because "other guys cheated, and he was entitled to a level playing field, and who cares anyway, I want to see home runs" ... before any of that, move away and try to understand that what happened yesterday is not going to put anybody in jail.
-- The Star-Ledger
Bob Klapisch: "Come clean, Roger"
Roger Clemens has one last play left in him now. Publicly disgraced by the Mitchell Report, his reputation forever soiled, The Rocket can bestow a farewell gift to the game he apparently abused for the last 10 years of his career: Clemens needs to fully confess to his phony achievements in pinstripes.
-- The Bergen Record
Mike Lopresti: "Probe only scratches surface"
So now we know more of the accused, from Roger Clemens to Miguel Tejada.
Now we have a fuller sense of the scope of the scandal. It took more than 300 pages to detail, and nobody is pretending even that is complete.
Now we have a better understanding of the ugly underside of baseball, hidden beneath the seventh-inning stretch and autographs and peanuts and Cracker Jack. A stench that no one wanted to recognize, until they were forced to.
Mike Lupica: "A great day for baseball"
-- USA Today
This wasn't some drug-pushing clubhouse attendant looking to get paid Thursday, or some personal trainer with a needle in his hand. This wasn't some dentist selling human growth hormone over the Internet the way Amazon sells books. This was Sen. George Mitchell, who once brokered peace in Northern Ireland, finally presenting a bill to baseball players for all the baseball drugs they have used.
-- New York Daily News
Ken Rosenthal: "Report takes aim at wrong target"
Exactly what did the Mitchell Report accomplish?
Former Sen. George Mitchell took 20 months to figure out that there was widespread anabolic steroid use in baseball for more than a decade, and that the sport's response was slow to develop and initially futile.
Stop the presses.
Dan Shaughnessy: "Investigation raises more questions than answers"
It's never going to be tidy. There will be no closure. You won't be able to get your arms around it.
Baseball had its steroid era. Yesterday the much-anticipated Mitchell Report was released. The former senator spoke of "widespread illegal use" of anabolic steroids and human growth hormone to improve athletic performance.
Here was much gum-flapping after the release of the report, and debate will rage forever. No one will be satisfied, but here in Boston and across Baseball America, we know the biggest loser of Dec. 13, 2007, was Roger Clemens.
Childs Walker: "Legal challenge, more inquiries could unfold"
-- Boston Globe
Former Sen. George J. Mitchell called it the closing of a chapter.
Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig said that with the past now better explained, the game is ready for a more honest future.
Many praised the honesty and recommendations in Mitchell's report on steroids, released yesterday.
But scientists, politicians and others said it's not at all clear that Mitchell's effort will put a period on baseball's experience with performance-enhancing drugs.
-- Baltimore Sun
Other stories from Dec. 14
"ESPN keeps Vina off the air" -- New York Daily News
"Some media blow it by targeting Pujols" -- St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"Turns out Clemens truly was unbelievable" -- The Star-Ledger
"A sullied part of Dodgers' history" -- Los Angeles Times
"Giants cited for letting drugs persist" -- San Francisco Chronicle
"Red Sox may have been right about Clemens' twilight" -- New York Daily News
"A swing and a miss for Mitchell Report" -- The Sports Network
"Why Baseball's * Won't Hurt $" -- Forbes
"Some of us here to talk about the past" -- Chicago Tribune
"Clemens' Cooperstown bid likely will end with strikeout" -- New York Daily News