If Major League Baseball attempts to get punitive with Jason Giambi for his tacit but not explicit admission that he used steroids, it will constitute a new level of hypocrisy. And if baseball's investigation gives the Yankees the shield they need to attempt to void Giambi's contract, it will constitute a new new level of hypocrisy.
Unlike everybody else embroiled in the various steroid scandals, Giambi seems to want to come clean. His remorse seems genuine but clumsy, like he's got all these issues but he doesn't know where to take them.
And baseball, the entity that closed its eyes and counted its money for years and years while extolling the virtues of the artificial long ball, is now threatening to come down hard on the one guy who might provide a sliver of salvation to the whole episode.
We're beyond wondering whether most of the main actors did or didn't use performance-enhancing drugs, so why not allow Giambi to be the face of honesty? It might be late honesty, but it's the best they've got. He admitted a mistake and rightfully implicated capital-B Baseball in the process.
He's right on both counts. His honesty might be the end of him.
This Week's List
• And just so you know, it's not just Selig: NBA commissioner David Stern was scheduled to attend Game 5 of the Suns-Spurs series in Phoenix -- you know, the game in which Amare Stoudemire and Boris Diaw were suspended in a blind concession to a stupid rule -- and decided against it because he had a cold.
• One more reason we're all screwed up: A 42-ounce soda -- "Hugo" because it apparently needs a name -- for 69 cents.
• I mean, come on: Forty-two ounces?
• The best Diaw-Stoudemire point so far: Brought to you by Bruce Jenkins of the San Francisco Chronicle, who wonders why enforcement czar Stu Jackson even has a job if the rules are so inflexible there is no room for interpretation.
• And in 12 years, get ready for a Super Bowl-Game 7 doubleheader: Major League Baseball, not satisfied with the length of its season, will play Game 7 of the World Series in November.
• When it comes to the Eastern Conference, here's all you need to know: 79-76.
• If LeBron would just ask Kobe, he'd learn the following: In the final seconds of a conference final, you don't pass to Donyell Marshall for the game-tying shot.
• Just for the heck of it, all 16 players who played for the 1992 Cleveland Cavaliers, the last Cavs team to make the conference finals: Mark Price, Brad Daugherty, Larry Nance, Terrell Brandon, Hot Rod Williams, John Battle, Craig Ehlo, Henry James, Danny Ferry, Steve Kerr, Mike Sanders, Winston Bennett, Jimmy Oliver, Bobby Phills, Chucky Brown and John Morton.
• Nothing says "interleague rivalry" quite like: Rockies-Royals.
• I find comfort in the belief that the guy who figured this out couldn't tell you what he had for dinner last night: When Andruw Jones went 0-for-5 with five strikeouts and made the last out of the game, it was reported that he became the fourth player in the past 50 years to strike out five times and make the final out of the game with the tying run either on base or at the plate.
• The others, since you must be jonesing to know: Sammy Sosa, Greg Gagne and Scott Rolen.
• In 33 years he's going to reveal how a marketing exec changed him from a vegan to a nonstop hawker of red-meat grilling: In his just-released autobiography, George Foreman claims he was drugged by his trainer in the moments before his 1974 "Rumble in the Jungle" fight with Muhammad Ali.
• You know, in these troubled times, "a beer or two" isn't what it used to be: On Monday, Team Landis announced that Will Geoghegan had entered rehab.
• This week in a special edition of "Cops," eight guys wearing tank tops will be dragged out of trailers before a Las Vegas lieutenant looks straight into the camera and issues the following warning to Pacman Jones: "If you don't watch yourself, Chris Henry's going to make you look bad."
• Due diligence? Nah: Sure, the Bengals can get all high and mighty now, but A.J. Nicholson's college rap sheet was what most people in the business call a predictor.
• How to save the most boring scientific hearing ever: Inject one three-time Tour de France winner, a painful revelation of childhood sexual abuse, an alleged confession of doping allegations and a business manager who makes an intimidating cell-to-cell phone call using the number that appears on his business card.
• And finally, like the rest of us, he has a few pops and goes right to the child-molester card for a few laughs: Geoghegan, the former business manager for Floyd Landis, said he called Greg LeMond "after a beer or two" and pretended to be an uncle who had sexually molested LeMond, in an effort to dissuade LeMond from testifying against Landis.
Tim Keown is a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine. Sound off to Page 2 here.