There has been a lot of controversy over steroids in baseball.
Does it improve performance and what are the side effects. Are
today records the result of steroids. And do athletes hurt
First of all, we need to understand what a steroid is. And why gamers use it. Anabolic steroids are a synthetic version of testosterone, a male hormone. Testosterone in its normal state promotes and stimulates muscle development and growth. When supplemented with steroids, you have increased muscle mass, reduced body fat, and improved stamina. It is used by athletes to try to gain an edge over competition. It is believed that by using a steroid in baseball it will make you hit the ball further. And longer.
What are some of the side effects? They range from psychological to physical. From a psychological point of view, they can range from a feeling of well being to depression. Mood swings. And even rabies. Sometimes called “roid rage”. Other negative psychological effects can include intense aggression and violence.
From a physical point of view, you can have all kinds of changes. You will have increased muscle mass and increased stamina, but the side effects can include a plethora of issues. The worst being liver damage and cancer. You may have acne, excessive growth, or hair loss. Testicular atrophy (narrowing), etc.
What is the reward versus the risk? The reward is a quick way to build muscle mass, increase performance and increase endurance. A feeling of invincibility. The risk is permanent physical morbidity and psychotic episodes including aggression, violence and rapid mood swings. Also feelings of depression and suicide. Is the reward worth it? Absolutely not! However, athletes today abuse it to quickly gain fortune and fame. It is believed that by using a steroid in baseball it will lead you down the path to fortune and fame.
There has been a lot of controversy whether Mark McGwire or Barry Bonds or Gary Sheffield and others have used a steroid in baseball. There is the infamous BALCO incident where there are accusations that Barry’s longtime friend Greg Anderson was supplying Barry with an unreliable steroid, sometimes referred to as “the cream” or “the clear”. Which has raised a lot of questions in the baseball world. Have they used a steroid in baseball and is there any evidence that it has improved their game? We can draw several conclusions.
First of all, is there any evidence that a steroid in baseball has improved the record books with unfair records. Currently not. We need to remember a few things before we try to point fingers etc. Barry Bonds has had an incredible season, setting a record of a season of home runs that will probably never be surpassed in my mind. It happened with a guy who usually did about 35 home runs per season. Can you explain the sudden jump in circuits? Probably not. But you can assume he’s matured to the top of his game and had a dream season.
Now let’s look at Roger Maris. When Roger kept hitting 61 home runs from a guy who’s usually never hit so many. Did everyone in the world suddenly start saying that there must be a steroid in baseball that they are using? Or he has to do something to improve his game. No they haven’t. They assumed he just had a magical season that only happens very often. Can we draw the same conclusions about Barry and Mark? Yes we can. Could it be that they had magical seasons? Absolutely.
Until the evidence is released, we don’t know what an athlete does. What I know as a former major league is how hard it is to perform at such a high level day in and day out. In my mind, whether or not they take steroids, you should always hit the ball over the fence. You still need to make solid contact consistently. You should always have good fundamentals. I think what happened on the baseball field was remarkable and we are fortunate to be able to see such great athletes perform on a daily basis.
The steroids in my mind take the game out. Even though they provide a rapid explosion in muscle mass and endurance, in the long run they will hurt you. They will cause psychotic events and physical damage that will last a lifetime. The bottom line is simple. Play the game the way it is meant to be played. Play with honor, pride and dignity. And most importantly, leave the steroids out of this one. Using a steroid in baseball just isn’t worth it.