It’s likely that the only person (besides his supplier) who really knew how long Carlos Ruiz had been using Adderall was “Chooch” himself. When the Philadelphia Phillies catcher was caught using the banned stimulant for a second time by Major League Baseball, he was suspended.
Ruiz will open the 2013 season by spending the first 25 games of the season on the naughty list. Terms like “Chooch” and naughty might sound cute, but the situation is actually very serious for this middle-aged backstop and for his employer.
This seven-year veteran reached previously untapped offensive heights last season with that ADHD drug in his system. Now that he (hopefully) won’t be using that substance this year, it’s challenging to know what his overall effort will be.
I can’t think of anyone who disliked this affable Phillies player during his tenure. The stocky, quiet, terrific defensive catcher has been a constant force during many of the Phillies’ most meaningful games since he became a starter in 2007. As everyone knows, he also was a crucial part of that great 2008 World Series season.
Unlike most people, and despite whatever tone of voice might be perceived in this digital space, I’m hardly anti-”Chooch”. In all likelihood, this good-natured guy felt himself beginning to slip physically and wanted to maintain his edge. It’s as simple as that in my eBook.
Call that cheating if you like, but I won’t cross that gray line. Actually, I believe that many “banned substances” will become mainstream at some point in the future of all sports. Those drugs will just be given fancier names when they are legislated into common existence.
In the meantime, we’ll wait to see how Ruiz performs after spring training is over. Most people are likely to shout their support when he returns to regular season action in late April by using his still-apt nickname and hoping for the best.