Eric Gagne Releases Non Tell-All Book

Come on, you knew it was bound to happen. You knew that it was only a matter of time – that a former Dodger from the “steroid era” would be out to try make a quick buck by writing a so-called tell-all book. You also knew, or at least should have, that it would be someone who had either admitted to using performance enhancing drugs (which no one admitted to at the time) or someone who had been implicated in the 409-page Mitchell Report released on December 13, 2007. It most certainly would not be someone not implicated of PED use. I mean, who in their right mind would ever do something that stupid, right? That would be like writing a book bragging that you smoked crack cocaine every day before you pitched in the major leagues and who would be dumb enough do that? So I guess it should come as no surprise that admitted PED user Eric Gagne would come out with a book about his PED use in an attempt to make a quick buck.

You’ve got to wonder why Gagne’s new book “Game Over: l’histoire d’ Éric Gagné” is only available in French.

I will be the first to admit that I was as big of an Eric Gagne fan as anybody, anybody except my (then) 8-year-old son who absolutely idolized Eric Gagne. Eighty-four consecutive saves? Are you kidding me? Who does that? That’s one of the greatest accomplishments in baseball history, something that we will most likely never see again, not ever.

I also have to admit that I was absolutely devastated by the Mitchell Report and actually wept when I learned that members of the Dodgers… my Dodgers had been involved in this grand cheating scheme. What? Paul LoDuca? Guillermo Mota? Eric Gagne? These were three of my favorite Dodgers at the time and they cheated?

Yes, I wept. And then I was sad, and then I was angry, and then I was furious… absolutely furious. In a heartbeat my affection for these three guys had turned to pure anger, disgust and yes, even hatred with each page of the Mitchell Report I read – and I read every one of them. How dare you Paul LoDuca, Guillermo Mota and Eric Gagne! How dare you desecrate the graves of Dodger greats such as Don Drysdale, Roy Campanella, Gil Hodges and the hundreds of other great former Dodgers – Dodgers who played the game the right way and without cheating.

To be painfully honest, there was never any doubt in my mind that there were Dodgers involved in the steroid era, how could there not be? And as much as I despise former major leaguer and admitted PED user Jose Canseco and former clubhouse attendant and physical trainer Kirk Radomski, the guy responsible for introducing hundreds of major leaguers to PEDs, I read both of their books – not to help them make money off of the darkest black eye that baseball has ever seen, but to find even the slightest piece of information… anything that might suggest that the Mitchell Report was wrong – anything. But instead I learned that not only were things as bad as reported in the Mitchell Report, they were much worse. In fact, Canseco suggested in his book that as many as 80% of the MLB players of his time used performance enhancing drugs – 80%! Is this where Gagne came up with his 80% number?

Now I’m certainly not suggesting that Canseco’s 80% number is anywhere near accurate, but I’m also not so naive as to believe that Gagne, LoDuca and Mota were the only Dodgers who used PEDs during Gagne’s eight seasons with the Dodgers (1999-2006). But at the same time, I have a serious problem believing that the Mitchell investigation would have missed other PED-using Dodgers had 80% of the team actually been using them. Something else to keep in mind is that a number of today’s banned substances were not banned by the MLB until after 2005. Perhaps Gagne overlooked this little tidbit when writing his book.

And while Gagne may think that he is being noble and honorable by not naming names, exactly the opposite is happening. By not naming names, it sounds as though he is trying to minimize or justify his own PED usage by saying that almost everybody else on the Dodgers used them too. Sounds like a grade school prank gone bad. Pretty sleazy, if you ask me. Simply put, no names – no credibility.

Gagne attempted to make a comeback with the Dodgers at spring training 2010 but was released after failing miserably. (Photo credit – Ron Cervenka)

What do some of Gagne’s former teammates think about his new book and his 80% claim?

“He should have mentioned names,” said former Gagne teammate Adrian Beltre. “I know for sure I’m not one of them. I haven’t read the book. I’m not interested in it. He should have come up with names instead of a percentage,” Beltre added.

“Apparently, I’m the 20 percent,” said former Dodger and current White Sox manager Robin Ventura, who finished his 16-year MLB career with the Dodgers in 2003-04. “…I was never around it, so it’s just one of those (things) that maybe he knows something I don’t.”

Regardless, I certainly won’t be giving Gagne a single penny of my money for his new book and wouldn’t even if I could read French – Aucun monsieur, pas me.

Why?

Because Eric Gagne cheated, and he cheated as a Dodger. And I will never ever forget the anguish on my son’s face when I had to tell him that his favorite Dodger was a cheater. And this doesn’t even include the fact that when Gagne tried to make a comeback with the Dodgers at spring training 2010, he rudely snubbed not only my dear friend Gary Smith and I when we asked him for an autograph, but he also rudely snubbed my other dear friends Mike and Curtis LeClair (the latter being 12-years-old at the time) even after telling him that they had traveled all the way from their home in British Columbia, Canada to get an autograph from their countryman. As Gagne walked away arrogantly with his nose to the sky, Mike said to him “Hey Eric, you can kiss my rosy red ass.”

I couldn’t agree more.

 

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7 Responses to “Eric Gagne Releases Non Tell-All Book”

  1. CRANBROOK MIKE says:

    Yes brother that one was a very bitter pill to swallow as you said. Yet again this issue rears its very dirty and disgusting head. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, as a fan I just feel so damn slighted by lots of these millionaire jerks who cheat. They cheat the game, they cheat themselves, and they cheat us the fans who pay their frigging salaries. Personally I’m am really getting exhausted by it all. But yet for some unknown reason we the fans keep coming back for more.
    Well written!

  2. Bluenose Dodger says:

    Horse crap. We know that there was much more PED use than we would like to believe, even with our Dodgers. But it is chicken crap to not name names. No guts, no glory, Eric Gagne.

    80% of the Dodgers using!! How the heck could we not win a WS in 25 years with 20 guys on a 25 man roster juiced? So every Dodger at that time is tainted because Gagne doesn’t name names. Beltre and Ventura are made to look guilty as they speak on their own behalf. Stick man Shawn Green is implicated.

    Junior high stuff Eric. From my experience the junior high kids offer three defenses: Deny, blame someone else, “everyone is doing it”.

    A tell all book. A tell nothing book if names aren’t named. Doesn’t help justify you cheating Eric. Just makes you another Jose Canseco. Your cards are going in the paper recycle where they might have some value. Better still, in land fill with the cat litter.

    • Ron Cervenka says:

      Come on, Bluenose – quit being so wishy washy and tell us how you really feel.

      Seriously, I agree wholeheartedly and am as incensed by this bovine manure (as Vinny would say) as you are.

      I hope this book flops as badly as Oil Can Boyd’s book did.

  3. CRANBROOK MIKE says:

    Don’t do that Harold! They’ll nail you for littering!!!! Maybe you should burn them!!

  4. MFGRREP says:

    Harold that’s a bold and understandable statement. I’m conflicted on what to do with the autographed photo my wife won at a blind auction and the Gagne jersey I have so boldly tried to get autographed. As of last night they were removed from my Dodger collection in our home better known as Gary’s “Dodger room shrine”

    • Ron Cervenka says:

      Gary – I so vividly recall the excitement and anticipation that we both had upon learning the Gagne had been given a non-roster invite to spring training 2009. There we were – standing at the entrance to the players parking lot at Camelback Ranch at 6 freaking 30 in the morning with a handful of fellow die-hard Dodger fans hoping to get Eric to sign for us.

      We had befriended the security guard who knew what car each Dodger player drove and suddenly he said “Here comes Eric Gagne in his $250,000 Bentley.” Not only did Gagne not stop and sign for all of us (which would have taken maybe a minute or two tops), but he wouldn’t even look at us.

      Later that day, we tried to get him to sign for us on the field prior to that day’s game. We were there early and there were very few other fans around us and you held up your Eric Gagne jersey (the one that you mentioned above) and asked him if he would please sign it for you and he walked right past us not five feet away and wouldn’t even look at us. It was right then and right there that I realized that he was a pompous jerk and that not only did I no longer want his autograph, but I hoped that he would not make the team.

      He entered that game in the middle innings and got absolutely torched. I believe that he made maybe two or three more appearances with similar results.

      It was a couple of days later when Mike, Curtis and I saw Gagne walking up the path towards the clubhouse and both of them got really excited. Here again, there were very few fans around us and none of whom were asking for his autograph. As he approached, Mike told him that he and his son had driven all the way down from BC, Canada to see him and asked if he would please sign for his fellow Canadians. Gagne literally had his nose to the sky and didn’t so much as look at them or say boo. I told Mike that he had done the exact same thing to Gary and I two days earlier and this is when the rosey red thing came into play.

      From that moment on, I have had nothing but contempt for Eric Gagne and was happy when he was cut from the team a couple days later to ride off into the sunset in his $250,000 car.

      And now you know… the rest of the story. Good day.

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