Thursday, July 30, 2009

This Just In

By Steve Harris

Selig Announces "Designated Juicer"
Rule Designed to Rid Sport of Annoying Positive Drug Tests

NEW YORK, NY (July 30) -- In the wake of yet another scandalous revelation involving a star player testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs, Major League Baseball announced today perhaps its most sweeping move yet to deal with the situation.

Called the "Designated Juicer" rule, or DJ for short, the plan - which is dependent upon approval of the Major League Baseball Players Association - would allow each team to designate one star player who would be exempt from the game's drug-testing policy, allowing them to "juice" without disrupting the action on the field and in the clubhouse.

"This proposal shows the determination of Major League Baseball to rid the sport of the scourge of positive drug tests," Commissioner Bud Selig told a packed press conference at MLB headquarters. "The gossip, the rumors, the whispering about which big star will be the next one caught - this just serves as a distraction from the product we put on the field, and our fans are getting tired of it. Therefore, with the introduction of the "Designated Juicer," baseball will return the focus of the fans to where it belongs, while at the same time injecting an exciting new element into the National Pastime."

Selig explained to the stunned reporters that the new rule would not only improve the product on the field, it would also make the game more fan-friendly. "What's the biggest complaint we hear?" Selig asked rhetorically. "That steroids give a team a competitive advantage. But limiting each team to one DJ will spread the talent around, allowing even such hopeless franchises as the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Washington Nationals a chance to land that clutch hitter or ace starter, and enabling their fans to once again look forward to opening day with the anticipation that their team will be involved in a pennant race."

ESPN analyst Peter Gammons said the new rule would create the biggest impact in baseball since the introduction of free agency. "We've seen how teams in other sports have to juggle rosters because of things like salary caps, but believe me the DJ will be even more significant," Gammons said. "Suppose you're the Red Sox with Ortiz and Ramirez, or the A's when they had McGwire and Canseco, or the Yankees with Clemens and Giambi. In a situation like that you have to ask yourself - which one are you going to keep? You have to unload one of them, and that means a bargain price for teams looking to fill their DJ spot. This is going to create a real challenge for GMs out there - I don't evny them making those tough choices."

The punishment for teams violating the new policy was not announced, but according to Selig it will be harsh. "Our new drug czar, Pete Rose, will have free reign with regards to disciplinary moves," Selig said. "He won't pull any punches or play any favorites, and you can bet on that."

"This is the dawn of a new era in baseball," Selig said in conclusion. "The DJ will allow fans to continue cheering for their favorite players without fear of disappointment. We'll be removing the cynicism that has plagued the game in recent years, and introduce brand new generations of young people to the joys of baseball and the miracles of judiciously applied pharmaceuticals. I'm confident that our fans will react very positively to the new rule. You might call it drug peace on our time."

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