No Room For Steroids
March 6, 2017
Filed under Columns
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Every year, legendary ball players are voted on by the Major League Baseball committee regarding who will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Many have achieved Hall of Fame caliber through their talent and pure playing ability on the diamond. For others, they have relied on performance-enhancing drugs, commonly known as steroids, to propel their career. This has sparked the debate that all MLB committee members have on their minds: Should players that have used steroids during their career be allowed for induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame?
Voting for this distinguished honor is based upon the player’s pure playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character and contributions to their team.
This past January, Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez took their rightful place in the Hall of Fame.
Other players who were voted on but didn’t garner the “75 percentage of the votes” mark on this year’s Hall of Fame ballot included Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds and Sammy Sosa, all of whom were heavily investigated for the use of steroids in their careers.
Despite their talent on the baseball diamond, I believe that if a player used any form of steroids during their time in the MLB, voters should not only refuse to vote for them on the ballot, but should be removed from Hall of Fame contention entirely.
Though steroids have been banned in major league baseball since 1991, the MLB did not implement league-wide PED testing until 2003. Since then, approximately 130 baseball players in the MLB have tested positive for using performance-enhancing drugs. This belabors the point that steroids are dictating too many players’ careers.
Mark McGwire is an unfortunate example in this case.
McGwire was becoming one of the most prominent hitters in all of baseball during the 1998 season when he reached the untouchable milestone of 70 home runs in one season. However, he later admitted in 2010 to using steroids for “health-related purposes.” Immediately, McGwire fell from the limelight and his chances of reaching the Hall of Fame are slim to none.
Many players take steroids for various reasons. Some utilize them to cope with injuries while others use it as a shortcut to make big money. Although, a recurring rationale used by steroid users is that “everyone else is doing it” and they would be at a disadvantage if they were to play the game clean. This completely contradicts the foundation of sports.
The purest aspect of competition is equal gameplay. Someone’s best versus your best is as fair as it can be. But when something like steroids enhances one’s playing ability, it gives them an unfair advantage over the other and disrupts the equality of the game.
Steroids are unwelcomed in the MLB and the Baseball Hall of Fame should apply this same action when voting on new members. Doing so will guarantee that any player who uses steroids during their career will be given no room in the Hall.