DAILY DIRT: I wish I knew what the answer was in this home run deal

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Daily Dirt for Monday, Oct. 3, 2022

Home run controversies have been a part of the national pastime since the days of Babe Ruth. So have asterisks … Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 412 of The Daily Dirt.

1. A few more thoughts about Aaron Judge and the accompanying conversations about what is, what isn’t and what should be considered the all-time MLB home run record:

The steroid-fueled era of that made Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Barry Bonds larger than life figures cannot be erased. There are those who want asterisks attached to those numbers. Honestly, I’m not sure what the proper response should be.

I’m pretty sure none of those three will ever get into Cooperstown, so is that enough “punishment?” Again, I’m not sure.

I remember how exciting those years were. But I do remember thinking during the Bonds portion of that era, which ultimately provided a punctuation mark for that dirty period of of baseball history, that something just wasn’t right. It wasn’t right that Bonds looked seemingly twice the size of his former self, and how in the world could someone his age (37) hit 73 home runs?

Speaking of asterisks, those who were alive at the time of Maris’ pursuit of Babe Ruth probably remember that word also being brought up in 1961.

Maris was “criticized” for reaching his home run total in more games than Ruth was able to have played in, and MLB historians wanted an asterisk attached to that marvelous season Maris put together.

What is not brought up, or at least rarely, is that Ruth played in an era where Black players were not allowed to play in MLB. They were forced to play in the old Negro Leagues. 

Unfortunately, we can never change those old racist attitudes, and we also can’t change what happened in the steroid era. Can they be addressed successfully with asterisks? I simply don’t know the answer, and since society as a whole continues to debate that issue, I don’t feel bad for not coming up with an answer myself.

In the meantime, let’s just enjoys the breath of fresh air that is Aaron Judge.

2. One more thought regarding Judge.

Let’s not forget he turned down a seven-year, $213.5 million contract offer before the season from the Yankees. Judge will be a free agent after this season.

For how much — and who with — will be the next contract he signs? Since we already have a handful of players whose contracts are $40-plus million a season, would it be too much of a stretch to forecast Judge’s annual pay with his new contract being in the $50 million-a-year range?

3. This week’s disgusting meal comes via Vietnam, where one of the delicacies are coconut worms.

They’re a form of beetle larvae that look like huge maggots. Beetles lay their eggs inside coconuts and the larvae grow inside. They ruin the coconut, but the worms are tasty to the Vietnamese who eat them in a number of ways — fried, fermented in a stew and raw.

Steve Thought O’ The Day — They “look like huge maggots.” Yep, that’s enough for me. Just give me a cheeseburger and fries, please.

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. He likes his steak well done. At least he doesn’t put ketchup on it.

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