Steroids and Baseball

May 19, 2010
Custom User Avatar
More by this author
In today’s world, there is much problem with the game of baseball and the use of steroids. Steroids is also known as a performance enhancing drug due to what it is able to do for a player or athlete. Steroids allow athletes to grow muscle very quickly and makes them look very big. Most of this muscle building occurs in an athlete’s upper body, not his legs. This brings up the question, how much of an impact do steroids make on a baseball players homerun power? This is the big debate, while some experts agree that it helps the hitter, and others agree that they may not help a hitter at all. All of this trouble started in the 90’s when the homeruns started to pile up in every day baseball. The amount of homeruns that players were hitting was a staggering amount. Overall, steroids in baseball is a very severe problem that needs to be fixed to create an equal playing field so all players have a chance to succeed, without having to cheat with the use of steroids.
A time about 20– 30 years ago, there were no problems in baseball relating to players using these drugs. “Canseco, in his book Juiced, says he began using testosterone and Deca-Durabolin during workouts in 1985.” (The Earliest Accounts) This was one of the first accounts of a superstar using steroids to enhance his performance in baseball which could have accounted for several more homeruns. Steroids allows one player to gain an advantage over his competitor by what can be called cheating with a drug. Before the steroid era, there was never two people hitting more than 65 home runs like in the 1998 homerun battle between Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa. In all, the “steroid era” has created a serious problem. Would these stars have hit 500 home runs without being caught using these drugs in the past?
The Mitchell Report was one of the biggest turning points of steroids and baseball. George Mitchell, a former U.S. Senate member, was hired in 2006 by Bud Selig to create a master list of steroids users in present day. (NBC Sports) He did his job, finding information of steroid use in 80 players, 7 of whom wee former MVP award winners. “George Mitchell insisted naming names was the right decision and said he was prepared for Roger Clemens and others to deny his reports.” (Associated Press) As Mitchell compiled this list of players, he knew most of the bigger stars were going to deny his accusations but he thought it was for the good of the game to point out who “cheated” the game by taking performance enhancing drugs. “ ‘It is my judgment that 5-7 percent that tested positive in the 2003 anonymous survey testing understated the amount of use.’” (Associated Press: George Mitchell) He believed that there would have been a lot more players to be named in the report due to the home runs hit and just the size of players increasing overall.
There is much debate on what steroids really do to players. Some experts claim they do nothing, others claim they change the game largely. According to Dayn Perry: “An objective survey of steroids’ role in sports shoes that their health risks and effectiveness, while real, have been grossly exaggerated.” (Perry 1) In this quote, Perry is saying that all of the information that experts give you is extremely inaccurate and very exaggerated. He believes that steroids do less than they appear to do, even though there are looked at as being able to do a lot for a player.
While Perry says that about the “Steroid Era”, Steven Goldman states: “Before we consider the impact of performance enhancing drugs, on the record book, we should admit that baseball’s record book has always been, if not fiction, historical fiction.” (Goldman 1) What Goldman is saying by this is that there has always been ways to cheat, so this is not such a big deal. As both experts say this, George Mitchell believes differently, and thinks that juicers are ruining the game, as you will see in the next section about Mitchell, and his report.
The amount of players who use steroids in today’s game cannot be stated for sure. According to George Mitchell: “’I think it is a minority, albeit a significant minority. That’s why I think the majority of the players who don’t use such substances are principal victims.’” (Associated Press: George Mitchell) Mitchell strongly believes that there is a significant amount of players who do not use steroids, and they are the people who are hurt by the players using these drugs. They are hurt because they do not have the advantage of drugs to enhance their game, they use what they have to do the best they can. Ken Caminiti, a former baseball star, has a different percentage: “Caminiti told Sports Illustrated that at least 50 percent of major league players use steroids.” (Shipley) Caminiti is a different source saying that over 50 percent of the league use steroids. This is a different source since it is coming from an actual superstar player, who admitted using steroids and is saying that this many players use these performance enhancing drugs. Overall, there are several players using these drugs for the wrong reasons.
Bud Selig, the Commissioner of the MLB, has recently issued some new and improved baseball rules to limit the use of steroids in today’s game. “Major League Baseball and the players union announced Tuesday that a tougher steroids policy that would lead to a 50-game ban for the first positive test and a lifetime ban for their third positive test.” (Ortiz J.) This is the most recent rules put in place by MLB and the commissioner to help reduce steroid use. It has done some help, with the major suspensions of Manny Ramirez and other star players after positive tests. “Major League Baseball is expanding its list of banned substances.” (Roberts) The MLB is not only creating more rules, but creating a larger list of drugs on the banned substance list. More drugs were added to the list of substances that lead to suspensions to let less and less drugs to be allowed for performance enhancement.

Post a Comment

Be the first to comment on this article!

Site Feedback