PED usage: MLB must do more than suspend players


Alex Rodriguez is PED enemy number one.
Would banning players like A-Rod from the Hall of Fame deter PED usage?

The PED era is clearly not over. In fact, even if every player in the game today were completely clean — and I have a franchise in Montreal to sell you if you believe that — the issue of baseball’s records still needs to be addressed. And Alex Rodriguez is Exhibit A(Rod) in this discussion.

When the Yankees resigned Exhibit A(Rod) to a 10-year contract extension back in 2007, they gave him a provision that each time he passed one of the all-time home run leaders — starting with Willie Mays and ending, presumably, with Barry Bonds — he would receive an additional $6 million. On top of all the money he already gets in salary — more than any other player in the game — an additional $6 million would be showered upon Exhibit A(Rod). I hope that none of those millions have been spoken for, because he’ll see none of it. Age, injury, diminishing skills and now PED allegations have conspired to freeze Alex Rodriguez as the number five home run hitter of all time.

So, what happens if Exhibit A (Rod) sees the writing on the wall and decides to retire? The clock will start ticking on Cooperstown, but should it? Why should he ever appear on a Hall of Fame ballot in the future? He’s had a great career, of course, but how many of his numbers were achieved with the help of  Biogenesis and others? Can we ever know the truth? What can be done to reclaim the integrity of the game?

I have an idea: Throw him out of baseball altogether. Only the commissioner could do that, but in this case, it’s absolutely warranted. The rampant cheating that has gone on for decades in baseball — and let’s call PED use exactly that, cheating — has sullied the game tremendously. Whether or not the Yankees knew of what Exhibit A(Rod) was allegedly doing in Miami, the fact remains he knew what he was doing and was willing to reap the financial rewards that came his way as a result. And a  100-game suspension won’t change that one little bit.

And while the commissioner’s office is at it, there should also be an inquiry opened regarding Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire and every other player who failed a drug test or has been named in connection to PED usage. No longer should the BBWAA be given the discretion as to whether steroid users can be admitted to the Hall of Fame. If Pete Rose‘s name never appeared on any Hall of Fame ballots, then neither should the names Alex Rodriguez,  Barry Bonds, Rafael Palmiero or Manny Ramirez ever appear on similar ballots in the future.

What this action would do is provide a deterrent against players using short-cuts in the form of PEDs. This is an a powerful card that MLB has at its disposal, and they must not be shy about using it. Doing so would demonstrate — as forcefully as possible — that the game is serious about policing itself, and wants to bury this this issue once and for all. Otherwise, we can expect to see many more Biogenesis-type scandals in the future.


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  1. And one more thing while I’m on a rant, I am for PED’s because they saved baseball….PED’s and Cal Ripken JR…..they saved baseball. If you can’t remember the summer of 94 then look it up…if it where not for those 2 things , Ripken’s 2131 and the summer of 98 we may not have a game or players to have an argument about.

    Man, the summer of 98…one day they will make a movie about that, I was at the game AFTER McGwire broke the single season home run recored, it was in cincinatti. Watching big Mac taking BP is still engrained in my mind…I remember every swing..I remember the game, every at bat McGwire took the crowd fell silent and held their breath and as he whipped that bat through the zone 50,000 flash bulbs whent off all at once and then the crowd would exhale, I’ve never seen any thing like that before or since and I don’t think I ever will.

    Learning about the PED use in baseball was deflating to say the least, it was like A magician telling you the secret of his trick, once you know how it’s done it takes the magic out of it, like looking at the moon through a telescope or catching dad putting presents under the tree at Christmas, the truth. It’s not always pretty, but it’s always right.

  2. Taking away a players legacy won’t change anything, imagine if I told you I will pay you $200.000.000 to do a job, you do the job, you get your 200.000.000 and then I find out you cheated, all the time I was paying you for that job……so……what I’m gonna do is…….take away your employee Of the month awards and remove your name from our company forever, would you care? You alreay have the $200.000.000 dollars, you can build your own Cooperstown, and call it Roidland, or cheaterland and you could charge admission……and the sad thing is some folks would pay it.

    I encourage everyone to seek out and watch “when it was a game”. Those where the days when baseball had players that cared about the game, don’t get me wrong they enjoyed being paid to play but, they respected the game. If you are a new baseball fan…Listen to Lou Gehrig’s speach, look up some clips of Micky Mantel, Ted Williams… Reberto Clemente. If You are a new baseball fan, look back it it’s history, look back and see how it used to be before they strung up the lights at wrigley… If you are a new baseball fan, I feel sorry for you for I feel the days of heros and legends are long since past.

    As long as they get to keep the money the players will find a way to cheat to make more money…in regular society we do not allow the bank robber to keep the money

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