24 Jul Should Penalties For Performance Drug Users Increase in Major League Baseball?
There are a number of different reasons a major league player will use a performance enhancing drug. The most prominent – he wants to improve his performance. In a world with multi-million dollar contracts, there are some unwilling to leave their fate up to their natural ability.
This industry has strict rules about performance enhancing drugs. Still, major players are breaking the rules and getting caught. When that happens, the media generally jumps on the story and the paying public reads all about it.
So the question for players and league managers today is whether or not the rules and penalties in place are enough to deter the would-be drug user. A recent USA Today report explored this topic, gaining feedback from those affected the most.
Players like Mark DeRosa and Barry Zito want players held accountable. DeRosa also believes it is a tiresome topic and ups the ante – he wants players subject to the harshest penalties possible. Zito feels the deterrents in place are not enough to stop the habitual user.
For instance, the penalty for Melky Cabrera for testing positive for testosterone was a 50-game suspension. That vacation was followed by a $16 million deal to play for the Toronto Blue Jays. Does the punishment fit the crime?
This is a tough topic in a field where money talks and performance is the name of the game. Some are too fearful of natural ability and others are tired of those cheating the system getting merely a slap on the hand.
Reports often also ignore the physical consequences that result from any drug use. While these players may enjoy a better game now, they could be shortening their natural lives or at the very least, setting themselves up for addiction.
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