Vernal Equinox late morning links: 3/20/13

I woke up early this morning, poured myself a cup of coffee and I opened my laptop. My goal was to read some of the better stuff out there and to pass it on to you. Luckily for me, and for you, the internet didn't disappoint me on this first day of Spring. First up, a piece by Bob Nightengale of USA Today about MLB's Biogenesis witch-hunt. Investigators are hellbent on nailing people like Ryan Braun and Alex Rodriguez to the wall. Braun is the bigger target because he was successfully able to win his appeal last year after a positive drug test.

His successful appeal of a positive testosterone test led to major revisions in baseball's sample collection process last year.

Baseball officials, from the top executives in New York to their field investigators, refuse to let it go.

They want Braun — badly. They have been relentless in their pursuit, trying to make life as miserable as possible for him.

Is it just me or does this bit of information make MLB officials look extremely vindictive and petty?

Wait, no, I was wrong, this next bit of the story makes them look even worse:

Yet in case you think MLB officials will just throw their hands up in exasperation, the league reminded everyone of its power last weekend, suspending Detroit Tigers minor league pitcher Cesar Carrillo for 100 games. Carrillo never tested positive, but his name surfaced in Biogenesis documents.

MLB called him in and told him that if he told the truth, punishment might be minimized. Carrillo talked, MLB didn't believe him, according to two officials with direct knowledge of the testimony, and whacked him. He received 50 games for appearing in the Biogenesis records and 50 games for being uncooperative.

The players union could only watch, knowing that since Carrillo was not on a 40-man roster it was powerless to help him.

Wow. Read the entire piece. I was flabbergasted.

In case you missed it yesterday, a person named Robbie Knopf wrote a piece about Josh Lueke of the Tampa Bay Rays. You know Lueke, right? The alleged - but who is more than likely - rapist who only served 42 days after a plea deal. Yes, him. Anyway, the piece by Knopf has been taken down, probably because of negative reactions to it, but thanks to the magic of the internet, a cached version of the article is still up. I won't recap what Knopf said in his piece, mainly because it makes me so mad I want to punch something, but Bill Parker of the Platoon Advantage wrote a great piece in response to Knopf's.

Bottom line is, yes, a redemption story involving Josh Lueke would be a nice thing but Knopf went about it the wrong way.

And finally, I won't even spoil this next one. It's called Grand Theft Baseball by Jonah Keri of Grantland and it's fantastic.

Just read it.