When is enough, enough? The Performance Enhancement Drug issue is like a strain of the Flu…it has become impossible to go more than a season without news popping up about another strain. The two are also similar because although there are ways to control them to some degree, there has been no cure to date.
All the while, “the game” continues to be tarnished while fans become more and more cynical. Any news about a player having an ‘unusally good season’ emotes fears that he is probably “taking something”.
The innocence that baseball once enjoyed has all but vanished. Ball players used to be highly regarded heroes to a generation once upon a time. Over the past two decades they have, instead, turned into businessmen with obscenely inflated contracts, many of which at some point will probably be accused of or punished for ingesting or getting injected with some sort of illegal substance.
So the question continues to be raised again and again…How does MLB attempt to put an end to this travesty that PED’s and its widespread use has created?
There are two ways to cut down and hopefully cut out PED’s from baseball. We’re not saying that they’re unique nor will they fully deter users-to-be from obstaining permanently, however it could (and should) greatly minimize its usuage. It might sound ‘Polyanna-ish’ in its approach, but since nothing else has worked why not implement these two new rules?
1. Automatic exclusion from the Hall of Fame- It’s quite simple really. If taking PED’s are “illegal” then MLB needs to enforce it with the same passion they have when someone is caught gambling on baseball while playing or coaching. Let baseball come down on players with the same verocity and determination that confronted a certain Hall of Famer; Pete Rose.
If you asked 100 fans who they thought should be in the Hall, Rose or A-Rod how many of you would seriously think that the majority would select A-Rod, the Poster Boy for PED’s?
This rule would do nothing for those players who do not aspire to make the Hall or for those who are not even All-Star material. When I saw that one of the names on the list of players allegedly involved with the Biogenesis scandal was recently sent down catcher Jesus Montero, I found myself scratching my head. Players like that are probably never going to see the Hall of Fame unless they take a vacation to Cooperstown.
2. If you are caught, you face suspension-without pay– The best place to punish someone for breaking the rules of the game is their wallet. If faced with suspension without pay that could make a player be more mindful of the consequences before they take that injection..And I would increase the amount of games that a player can be suspended. Again, simple. First offense? 162 game suspension without pay. Second time offenders? Banned for life.
Too harsh? Well then how is it amicable and fair for Pete Rose to continue on his suspension which is now in its 24th year when he was a first-time offender at the time he was caught gambling on baseball? If gambling on the sport is illegal and the use of PEDs are illegal as well, why should the punishments be different? Pete Rose lied about his offense? Well didn’t Sammy Sosa, Mark McQuire, Rafael Palmeiro, and Roger Clemens lie as well? Enough is enough…