(Medina Spirit and trainer Bob Baffert, the day after the 2021 Kentucky Derby / Photos by Holly M. Smith)

Editor’s Note:

Every so often, we will be addressing a few things: comments, decisions, people, whomever who, and whatever that – for one reason or another – should be tossed into the literary “muck pit.”

It is in the spirit of cleanliness, recycling, and protecting the environment that we offer this service of “addressing the muck” – free of charge.

After all, someone has to do it, right? Might as well be us.

And, it didn’t take long for us to find a few pounds of, well, manure. Again.

Seems as if you hang around, the embattled Bob Baffert and his little band of elves, you are sure to find a heaping pile

Here is a look at our “20-Something Edition.”

Editor’s Opinion:

OK, peeps. Enough is enough. Right?

It’s way past time to put this whole, awful, disgusting, ugly and seemingly never-ending saga of Bob Baffert and his star-crossed horse, Medina Spirit, into Christmas Past.

It’s way past time to put this awful cloud that hangs over the greatest sport ever out to pasture, just as many — including me — would like to do with the epicenter of this entire mess.

It’s way past time to clean up a mess that was created way back in May when Baffert — or someone in his operation — decided it was OK to run a horse in the greatest race of all time — the Kentucky Derby — with so much medication that it would or possibly could trigger a positive test result and ultimately throw the horse and the horse industry into yet another quagmire of muck.

It’s way past time.

So, in the spirit of moving into the New Year a little bit later this week with a better attitude, a cleaner slate, and a brighter future, we are here to offer up a proposal that we think most innocent people — who have zero to hide and everything to gain — would immediately agree to and gravitate towards.

So, in the giving spirit of this most wonderful season, we are here to offer an opportunity for the rightfully accused, but still-to-be-convicted a chance to come clean. Or, at the very least, cleaner.

So, if the snow-haired, self-imposed guru of horse training and his team of legal experts, headed by Craig Robertson, are ready, we offer up a set of rules for a real life game of “Truth or Dare.”

Are you game, Robert?

Are you game, Craig?

Are you game enough for a little game?

If so, here are the rules:

First:

Baffert and his legal eagles allow a forensic scientist(s) — hired by and representing the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission and the California Horse Racing Board — complete access to all veterinarian’s and/or veterinarians’ computer records; text messages and all correspondence located in both Kentucky and California as it pertains to Medina Spirit.

From Day 1 of Medina Spirit’s arrival in the Baffert barn.

To Day Death of Medina Sprit’s departure from Mother Earth.

The team of forensic specialists will build a fair, equitable, truthful record of treatments that were administered before and after the Kentucky Derby based on facts and data. The forensic team will build a record of “who” administered “what(s)” to the horse. The forensic team will compile a portfolio of intel on “where” these “what’s” were administered. And, the forensic team will develop a comprehensive list of “who,” “where,” and “what(s)” was administered “when.”

The team will examine every little thing. Everything. Each treatment. Each medication ordered and administered. And, the team will assist in the final analysis of all tissue, blood and any other organs retrieved from the fallen horse upon his death.

And, upon conclusion, this team will issue a full and complete report to both the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission and the California Horse Racing Board for review, comment and final action.

Seem fair?

Seems fair to us.

And, if you are innocent of all charges and you have absolutely zero to hide, it would seem as if this process would be fair to Team Baffert, too, right?

After all, you can’t expect Dr. Jeff Blea — a longtime racetrack veterinarian and now the current Equine Medical Director for the CHRB — to conduct this review process.

Can you?

Seriously?

After all, that man is apparently under investigation by the state’s Veterinarian Board for up to eight possible violations and causes for discipline. After all, that’s what a noted reporter for the “Los Angeles Times” wrote last week.

So, it seems in the spirit of fairness, transparency, and full public disclosure our “proposal” would seem to be a professional compromise that would guarantee that the facts — just the facts, ma’am — are presented without tarnish of opinion or blemish of conflict of interest.

If (and when?), for all the right reasons, the information validates the Baffert defense team’s story and Medina Spirit’s record of medical treatment was as pristine as the horse’s race record? Then we all shall issue Team Baffert a public apology and a credit of accommodation.

Carry on. Go forward. Do great things.

If, for any reason, there is “questionable” or “damaging” data discovered and/or found that had been deleted — for reasons of a coverup — then Baffert voluntarily forfeits his licenses. Here. There. Everywhere.

For life.

Seems fair to me. Seem fair to you?

Truth or dare?

Second:

After the forensic team has completed its’ investigation of all the medical and veterinarian data, it would seem appropriate that both Baffert and his assistant trainer, Jimmy Barnes, submit to separate and individual polygraph tests and answer a list of questions submitted to them in advance.

The questions will pertain only to Medina Spirit.

The questions will pertain to the medical treatment of Medina Spirit before and leading up to this year’s Kentucky Derby.

The questions will pertain to the medical treatment of Medina Spirit immediately after the Kentucky Derby and leading up to his unfortunate and tragic death.

The questions will pertain to the ointment that was supposedly given to treat a skin rash that the horse acquired before this year’s Kentucky Derby.

The questions will pertain to any other methodology of treatment that could have been utilized to achieve a positive test result of this nature.

The questions will pertain to who knew what; when they knew what; and when “what” was administered to Medina Spirit.

The scientific results — while not permitted in a court of law — will be released in the court of public opinion.

If innocent, it seems the polygraph tests and the subsequent results would only validate and substantiate the Baffert storyline.

If (and when?), for all the right reasons, the information affirms the Baffert defense team’s story and the beleaguered trainer’s words are as pure and pristine as the fallen horse’s race record? Then we all shall issue Team Baffert a public apology and a credit of accommodation.

Carry on. Go forward. Do great things.

If not, then Baffert voluntarily forfeits his licenses. Here. There. Everywhere.

For life.

Seems fair to me. Seem fair to you?

Truth or dare?

Third:

After the forensic team’s job is complete and the polygraph tests have been administered, Team Baffert shall allow representatives from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission and the California Horse Racing Board complete and total access to his staff for questioning on the treatment of Medina Spirit.

The entire team of grooms, hot walkers, veterinarians, vet assistants, farriers, feed company representatives and others will be summoned to honestly and completely answer any and all questions regarding feeds; supplements; and who was responsible for daily care of and for Medina Spirit.

They will be asked who — exactly — acquired and administered the “topical cream” that was prescribed to treat the skin rash.

They will be asked when they started to apply the cream, in question.

They will be asked when they stopped applying the cream, in question.

They will be asked what they did with the containers of the cream — before, during and after administration of the cream, in question.

They will be asked if they witnessed any other treatments to the horse, and to identify whom administered what and when.

If innocent, it seems as if the staff will only collaborate what Baffert and his legal team have been offering and any subsequent staff report would only validate and substantiate the Baffert storyline.

If (and when?), for all the right reasons, the staff information affirms the Baffert defense team’s story and the beleaguered trainer’s words are as pure and pristine as the fallen horse’s race record? Then we all shall issue Team Baffert a public apology and a credit of accommodation.

Carry on. Go forward. Do great things.

If not, then Baffert voluntarily forfeits his licenses. Here. There. Everywhere.

For life.

Seems fair to me. Seem fair to you?

Truth or dare?

Conclusion:

It seems pretty simple to me. If Team Baffert wants to clear the trainer’s name — which is undoubtedly tarnished, no matter what you think — and the reputation for his fallen horse, then the pathway to exoneration is paved with honesty.

We have offered such a pathway.

Agree to it.

Let the facts set you free.

Let the truth set you free.

If you dare.