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McGwire, the Steroid Era & the Future


Deadspin.com put Mark McGwire back in the news today. Reportedly Big Mac’s little brother, Jay McGwire, has been trying to sell his tell-all book to publishers. According to Jay he introduced his older brother to performance enhancing drugs in 1994. That of course contradicts Jose Canseco’s account of McGwire’s steroid use. That’s the only new revelation that seems to have come out of this. Not surprisingly no publishers have picked up Jay’s book.

Jay and Mark reportedly have no relationship anymore. Jay claims he wrote this book to help Mac come clean.

What a load of BS!

First of all what kind of brother, estranged or not,  throws his family under the bus to make a profit? Jay is an ex professional bodybuilder who got hooked on roids. His life ended up falling apart and he found himself broke. Remind you of anyone? Hmm. Could it be another brother of McGwire’s? Perhaps a Bash Brother?mm_jc

I really don’t care whose account is accurate. McGwire did without a doubt use performance enhancing drugs. But so did 90% of the league during the “Steroid Era”. The strange thing is those performance enhancers were not banned by baseball. Many of them were illegal by law. But anything from smoking weed to beating on your wife is illegal. And there are still many players in professional sports who do something that is illegal to some degree every day. Hell most ordinary people do too. If you’re reading this thinking what is this crackpot talking about? If this is you answer this. Have you gone faster than the posted speed limit, failed to come to a complete stop at a stop sign or failed to wear your seatbelt? Odds are you answered yes. So you too have broken the law most likely without getting caught.

But back to the point, I hate that players were/are juicing. But I blame the MLB. It’s their mess and they chose not to deal with it. Chicks and fans do dig the long ball. A historic homerun race would probably be great for baseball after a strike wouldn’t it?

The HR race that saved baseball

The HR race that saved baseball

Baseball execs let the drug problem baseball grow and grow because it was good for them. It wasn’t until Barry Bonds II (the giant headed Bonds with the Schwarzenegger body) started breaking every homerun record that the public started to realize that there was something wrong. DC then decided to get involved and we all know the story from there.

BondsI on the left BondII on the right

BondsI on the left BondsII on the right

So what can be done?

MLB wants to just act like it never happened. They think that if you just don’t acknowledge the players of that era that it’ll go away. They obviously couldn’t be more wrong.

Here’s what they need to do.

Baseball is made up of eras. The most recent era will forever be remembered as the Steroid Era. So why not acknowledge the greats of the era? Here are the stipulations that I believe should be imposed.

1. Players that are obviously lying about their steroid use (Clemens, Bonds, McGwire, Sosa, Palmeiro) must come clean to the public.

2. They must volunteer time to a MLB ran anti-steroid program that operates throughout the US and Latin America to educate kids and prospects about the dangers of performance enhancers.

If a player completes these steps then the writers shouldn’t leave these guysoff their Hall of Fame ballots. And their accounts of drug use and what they’ve done to help the youth should be forever enshrined in Cooperstown on their plaque.

the road to cooperstown should be difficult bst achievable

the road to cooperstown should be difficult but achievable

I know many people will disagree with this but just think about for a little bit before you write it off as a stupid idea. It takes a great deal of time and effort to work in these programs so these guys won’t be getting off easily. And at the same time an entire era superstars will not just be simply ignored. They may have been juicing during some of their historic milestones but they were still the superstars of a league where the majority of players were doing the same thing. So they were the best of their era.

In conclusion, I believe Big Mac out of all these guys is perhaps the best person on the inside. He was always a team player and he didn’t have the huge ego of Bonds and Clemens. If McGwire decides baseball is something he wants in his life again he can have it if he comes clean. The other guys want back in but no one wants them. I believe that if they come clean and dedicate time to educating the youth about steroids they should be allowed back in baseball and in the Hall of Fame. I have a hard time believing that Bonds or Clemens would ever do what I propose. But Sosa, McGwire and perhaps others would be great candidates to go through the program and be positive role models once again.


2 Responses

  1. It seems in McGwire’s case that he just really doesn’t care what people think of him. He retired early to get out of the spotlight. Maybe he knew that the all steroid allegations were getting ready to be made public. Or maybe he was just burnt out on baseball. At any rate I wouldn’t mind seeing players go through your plan to get to the hall. But I think immunity must be granted to these guys before they’ll ever consider it. Especially with McGwire. As we saw on capitol hill, he’s obviously been advised by an attorney to not talk about it.

    You really did nail it on the head though. It MLB’s fault. They waited forever to implement a steroid policy because it was good for post-strike baseball. Bud Selig and company should be at blame more than the juicers. Thanks to those suits juicing was legal in baseball.

  2. […] To me this is nothing new. I could care less about the AL and the Yankees. I already assumed that A-Rod had juiced. And unless there is evidence he juiced after MLB enacted a drug policy then he is not a cheater. Steroids were a part of the game. We have to get over it. It was the steroid era. If you missed how I beleive the era should be dealt with then click here. […]

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