On Thursday’s “Olbermann” on ESPN2, host Keith Olbermann criticized Major League Baseball for how it is handling the recent relapse of Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim OF Josh Hamilton. Hamilton has struggled with drugs and alcoholism throughout his life off and on. He came clean in 2005, relapsed in 2009, suffered a second relapse in 2012 and then another in February this year.
A four-person disciplinary committee is deadlocked about whether Hamilton should enter rehab after suffering his newest relapse or be suspended for all of the 2015 season without pay; now an arbitrator will make the decision.
According to Olbermann, the right thing is not to suspend him and free up the $25 million Hamilton is owed this season, but rather have Hamilton go to rehab and possibly donate some of his salary to rehab centers.
“Rehab is always better and maybe just as importantly, if there are two options and one is rehab and the other is worth up to $25 million for his employers, the system making that choice is rendered meaningless and corrupted by the money. That panel may reveal its decision as early as next week. Then it will be up to Commissioner Rob Manfred to make the call, his first big act. Perhaps an opportunity for him to address this awful and inappropriate influence of the salary.”
He continued, saying “Maybe a compromise. Perhaps a suspension and a donation of some of Josh Hamilton’s salary by Hamilton and the Angels to a drug treatment facility for, you know, abusers who can’t afford rehab. I’m hoping the new commissioner will consider it that kind of a choice. And not the kind of choice that’s in the books right now, which is the choice between giving the Angels $25 million and doing the right thing.”
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