The news about Ron Washington wasn't a welcome one. And it wasn't really a story that the Fan wanted to feature here in the FanDome. But, the revelation is an important one and as such deserves at least a mention. The timing sort of stinks because the Rangers seem to be in a position to finally dethrone the Angels in the AL West, and certainly, somebody has to do that, just for the sake of difference.
As Jeff Passan over at Yahoo Sports stated, the Rangers really had no choice here but to give Ron Washington another chance after he told them about what happened. Passan correctly correlates that if the team has given Josh Hamilton a second chance after that bar incident last year, then they have to do the same with Washington. But there are a couple of issues here that are a bit disturbing.
First, Washington has admitted his wrongdoing AND the MLB testers have a positive test. Wouldn't those two things combined put Washington afoul of the law since cocaine is illegal? Couldn't the local police view this as corroborating evidence and arrest the manager? And if so, and if (it's a long shot) the police did act on such information, what would the Rangers do then? Hamilton's adventure was in a bar and drinking and giving body shots to young women is not illegal.
Secondly, Hamilton is a player, not a boss. As someone who has been in the position as the boss, there is a higher standard there. As a boss, one of my workers would get a second chance for an OUI conviction, but the boss wouldn't, because a boss is supposed to hold a higher standard of behavior. Ron Washington is the manager, or the boss of a bunch of young men. As such, his standard is higher than Hamilton's. So really, you can't compare the two.
All of that said, everyone...everyone deserves a second chance after making a mistake. But the thing that sticks in the Fan's craw is this: Why would a middle aged man suddenly try cocaine just once? The Fan is middle aged and wouldn't even know where to find such stuff. Perhaps it was simply available at a party or something. The circumstances of the usage would be important to the Fan as an employer. Was the usage at home or at a party? If at home, that seems a bit more implausible that this was a one time thing.
Necessarily, due to Washington's privacy, the Rangers won't reveal those kinds of details and they shouldn't. But those details would mean a lot of different things to an employer. The proper procedure is in place and regular testing is now Washington's lot in life. As it should be. And thus the Rangers are protected against a repeat offense. There won't be a second chance.
Washington played at a time when cocaine was a problem in baseball. We had those sticky situations with the Pirates and Tim Raines and Paul Molitor. The Rangers and MLB have little choice but to believe Washington that this was a one time stupid mistake. But the Fan would feel a little gullible to believe that.
Again, the timing of all this really sucks as the Rangers really have a shot at winning the AL West. Plus, this is the first major news story with the new owners in place. They must be thrilled.
Ron Washington will be on a short leash. If the Rangers get off to a slow start, his head will roll faster than a Dick Webber bowling ball. But that's the way it goes when you do something so stupid.