TAMPA, Fla. -- Reggie Jackson challenged baseball's whopping
home run totals, and claimed that some are the result of players
"Somebody definitely is guilty of taking steroids," the Hall
of Fame slugger told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution for
"You can't be breaking records hitting 200 home runs in three
or four seasons. The greatest hitters in the history of the game
didn't do that," said Jackson, who hit 563 home runs.
San Francisco slugger Barry Bonds is just two home runs shy of
tying his godfather Willie Mays for third place on the career home
run list with 660. Babe Ruth is second with 714 and Hank Aaron
first with 755.
"Henry Aaron never hit 50 in a season, so you're going to tell
me that you're a greater hitter than Henry Aaron?" Jackson said.
"Bonds hit 73 [in 2001], and he would have hit 100 if they would
have pitched to him. I mean, come on, now. There is no way you can
outperform Aaron and Ruth and Mays at that level.
"There is a reason why the greatest players of all time have
500. Then there is that group that is above 550. There is a reason
for that. Guys played 19, 20, 25 years. They had 9,000 to 10,000
at-bats, and it was the same for everybody.
"Now, all of a sudden, you're hitting 50 when you're 40."
Jackson also said he wants to join fellow Hall of Famers in
meeting with baseball commissioner Bud Selig to discuss baseball's
steroid-testing rules, which he does not believe are stringent
"Why wouldn't you ask me or Aaron or somebody like that to give
you some insight? Bud is a nice guy, but he doesn't know what's
happening here," Jackson said.
He added that any time any baseball veterans "speak the truth
and show our concern, it's like, 'Oh, they're just whining.' "
Jackson also criticized the baseball players' association for
not accepting a more stringent drug-testing policy.
"The last I heard, (the illegal distribution of steroids and
other drugs) was against the laws of the land," Jackson said.
"The players' association talks about 'my rights.' My rights? Do
you have the right not to pay taxes? You do something wrong, you
pay the penalty."