Gagne Hurt, We’re Shocked

April 23, 2007 – 12:57 am by Ryan Phillips

Eric Gagne, poster boy for the ills of steroid use, is injured again. In the ninth inning of the series finale with Oakland yesterday, Gagne threw two pitches before walking off the mound with an apparent hip injury.

Rangers manager Ron Washington seemed a but peeved, “Gagne has a right hip sprain. He’s day-to-day, but it is not a back problem. It is always a concern when you see your closer act up on the mound.”

OK, can we please now just come out and all agree that Gagne’s record for consecutive saves (84 in a row) and his 2003 NL Cy Young Award are both tainted? As tainted as any of Barry Bonds’ achievements and Ken Caminiti’s 1996 NL MVP Award.

Gagne went from mediocre starter with a low-90’s fastball to Incredible Hulk-looking closer with a 98 mph fastball, a lame “Game Over” intro graphic and a ridiculous goatee. In three seasons as a starter he amassed a record of 11-14 before being switched to a closer at the start of the 2002 season. He saved 52 games that year. In 2003 he converted 55 of 55 save chances, becoming the fastest pitcher to ever reach the 100-save plateau.

In 2004 baseball announced they would be testing for steroids on an experimental basis, in a completely unrelated story, Gagne lost some of his effectiveness that season. Then in 2005 with a more stringent policy in effect, his body began to fall apart. He had Tommy John surgery in June of that year, then in 2006 he had more elbow issues and back pain before undergoing season-ending surgery on July 8.

OK, so an amazingly dominant guy’s body falls apart right as baseball introduces a new stronger steroid policy. Hmmm, yeah we’re sure it’s all just a big coincidence.

Either way, our assessment? Career Over.

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  1. 9 Responses to “Gagne Hurt, We’re Shocked”

  2. Of course, no one else in the history of baseball since 1871 to the present has ever had a short career as an ace pitcher derailed by ineffectiveness and then injuries. No one. Not a one. Nada. Must be the roids. Right Bobby Thigpen? Right Butch Metzger? Right Rawly Eastwick?

    By Smed on Apr 23, 2007

  3. Smed,
    Have you ever actually SEEN Eric Gagne? Better yet, did you see him before the 2002 season and after? Just checking.

    By Phillips on Apr 23, 2007

  4. What’s being overlooked here is that even during his “Game Over” seasons, Gagne couldn’t hold Trevor Hoffman and Mariano Rivera’s jocks. Both those other two guys actually know how to pitch, plus neither one is a sissy French Canadian.

    By Booter on Apr 23, 2007

  5. Smed,
    You represent everything not only wrong with Sports, but the World. You will probably be a newspeak writer.

    By Dave on Apr 23, 2007

  6. Good point, Booter. The old dudes know how to do it.

    By Business or Leisure? on Apr 23, 2007

  7. Two words: Alan.Embree. This guy went from throwing aroung 93 for the Giants, got OLDER and was hitting 99 for the Red Sox. He is the most obvious steroid user I can think of. More so than the Rocket himself.

    By Anonymous on Apr 23, 2007

  8. I’d have to say that I gained about as much weight as Gagne did in a short time frame. But mine was due to a nacho and beer overdose. All I’m saying is that not everyone who flames out and gets hurt is on ‘roids, as the same that not everyone that had a big decline in the 80’s wasn’t on the nose candy.

    By Smed on Apr 23, 2007

  9. Fuck off asshole.

    By Anonymous on Apr 24, 2007

  10. OK Smed, I can deal with that, not everyone who does that is on ‘roids. But Eric Gagne? Yes, yes he was on ‘roids.

    By Phillips on Apr 24, 2007

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