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ESPN presents: "The Suspension - An interview with Bud Selig"

It's the only show on TV that will outlast The Simpsons

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Announcer: ESPN, the network that brought you such legendary fetes of sports reporting as "The Decision" and "Whatever It Is That Skip Bayless Does" is pleased once again to bring you another triumph of journalism: "The Suspension: An Interview with Bud Selig."

Karl Ravech: "Good afternoon, ladies and gentleman. This is Karl Ravech. Joining me today is baseball legend Curt Schilling."

Curt Schilling: "Yes, Curt Schilling...that's me. 'Curt' with a 'c', not with a 'k'...remember that!"

Ravech: "Thank you, Curt. We are here today with the first ever live, half-hour special dedicated to the suspension of a professional athlete. As we all know, performance-enhancing drugs have infiltrated the ranks of Major League Baseball like no other sport in the history of mankind. Do not look that up on the internet, people; just take my word for it. I'm a journalist."

Schilling: "I would just like to go on the record and say that Curt Schilling has never taken a drug of any kind. And I would never allow my team to benefit from cheating. If I saw one of my teammates using steroids - which I didn't - I'd be all like, 'Hey, son, you need to put that poison away and win the Schilling way!' But there was no cheating going on in any Curt Schilling clubhouse, I can tell you that...and I'll fight any man who says otherwise."

Ravech: "Hard to argue with that kind of passion, people. And now, without further ado, allow me to introduce Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig."

Bud Selig: "Thank you, Karl. I'd just like to say that it's an honor to be sitting down with the legendary Curt Schilling. You are a true winner, and a pillar of the Rhode Island business community."

Schilling: "Very true, Bud. I could say that nobody had ever heard of Rhode Island before I set up business there, but I won't, because Curt Schilling is a modest man and a job creator!"

Selig: "Now, before we start the interview, I would just like to say that all of today's proceeds will go to charity."

Ravech: "You mean the salaries of all the suspended players?"

Selig: "No, that money stays with their respective teams."

Ravech: "Then what proceeds, exactly?"

Selig: "You know...the proceeds...from the thing...anyway, the point is that steroids are the scourge of baseball. Never in the history of our great game have we experienced such rampant cheating."

Ravech: "What about baseball's century-long history of players using corked bats, spitballs and Vaseline-balls to cheat?"

Selig: "That's another matter entirely. Those other things may be technically 'illegal', but steroids are a million times worse. Steroids are unnatural, man-made chemicals; spit, cork and Vaseline all come from nature. Sure, maybe Gaylord Perry cheated for most of his career, got elected to the Hall of Fame, and wrote a book called Me and the Spitter: An Autobiographical Confession - available now on Amazon - but he was a lovable rogue, not some steroid-using monster. It's like the difference between alcohol and marijuana - one is fun and the other is pure evil, and you just have to accept that fact without question."

Schilling: "I would just like to set the record straight, again - Curt Schilling never corked his bat. I earned those 13 career doubles!"

Ravech: "It would seem that your office is prepared to come down particularly hard on Alex Rodriguez. Would you care to justify your decision?"

Selig: "Of course. Alex Rodriquez is, quite simply, the leader of an international drug syndicate - some of the players are from Latin America, which makes it "international". Never before have we seen a collection of ballplayers coming together to distribute steroids among themselves, and that is all due to A-Rod."

Ravech: "What about the late-eighties Oakland A's, or the nineties Texas Rangers, or Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte?"

Selig: "I'm not quite sure what you're getting at. Besides, A-Rod really bugs me."

Ravech: "But is it really fair to base this extraordinary punishment on your personal distaste for the man? I mean, the proposed suspensions leaked by your office go way beyond the penalties for PEDs that were negotiated in the collective bargaining agreement."

Selig: "But he tried to buy the evidence from Anthony Bosch!"

Ravech: "Didn't you essentially do the same thing: threatening Bosch with a lawsuit and agreeing to drop it in exchange for his evidence?"

Selig: "Look, as my hero, Richard Nixon, once said: 'when the president does something, then it's not illegal." Well, if you just replace 'president of the USA' with 'commissioner of MLB', and 'pasty goblin Richard Nixon' with 'pasty goblin Bud Selig', then you will see that the same ethics apply to this case."

Schilling: "I'll tell you what: if the USA had a starting rotation of me, Bud, and Dick Nixon, we would never lose a World Baseball Classic...ever!"

Ravech: "So now we've come to the main event: Mr. Commissioner, are you ready to announce the suspensions?"

Selig: "Oh, no. I just came here today to announce that we'll be kicking off Part One of the official official announcement on Thursday, with Part Two of the official official announcement to come three weeks from next Monday. We're splitting this thing up like the last season of Breaking Bad...and everyone likes Breaking Bad, right?"

Ravech: "There you have it, folks. Join us Thursday at 10 am for the two-hour live "Official Official Suspension Announcement, Part One" pregame show, where we'll be joined by Stephen A. Smith. Thank you for watching ESPN, the Worldwide Leader in Sports!"

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