Thursday, August 11, 2005

MLB: Rafael Palmeiro returns to Orioles tonight after suspension

His 10-day suspension served, Rafael Palmeiro will return to the Orioles tonight in the series concluding game against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

Interim manager Sam Perlozzo said that he might not play Palmeiro tonight so that the 40-year-old first baseman can have another day to get accustomed to baseball activities, The (Baltimore) Sun reported.

The Sun also said that plans for Palmeiro to make a statement have been nixed because of the potential perjury charges he may be facing because of his statements to congress in March.

His agent, Arn Tellem, had been asking people to wait to hear Palmeiro's side of the story before deciding he was guilty, but now it seems that Palmeiro's side will not be heard -- at least not any time soon.

The Sun article said that players are not sure how fans will react, but that they expect some boos.

I posted my thoughts on this over at Camden Chat, and I feel like I said all that I wanted to say about Rafael Palmeiro, his current situation, and the potential fan reaction, so I'll just copy and paste that here (with some minor edits):

I don't want to boo Palmeiro, because I feel like he's been through a lot and, even though he brought it on himself, everyone does stupid things. Some are way stupider than others, but in a world of baseball where I really believe there were at least four players in every clubhouse on the juice before this year, I don't think it's as monumentally stupid as people make it out to be.

As for the lying, he's in a tight spot and he reacted poorly. Yeah, I feel lied to. He shouldn't have lied to his fans. But I really do think he feels pretty damn bad about what has happened, and I feel no desire to kick him while he's down.

However, I would like to never have the chance to boo him, because even with everything I just said, I don't want him back on the field in an Orioles uniform. It's too much of a distraction.

We're virtually out of the playoff race, but the team has started to make me feel good to watch them again by winning four of their last six games and by putting guys like Alejandro Freire on the field. It's fun to watch the rookies, and it's great that we're winning (even if it's only over a six-game span) with some of the lesser-known guys in the lineup.

I don't want to feel bad about the Orioles winning, which is how I think I'd feel with Raffy in the lineup.

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