Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Yes, yes, Mark McGwire used steroids. We all knew this.

While it was certainly against the law, it’s arguable it was against Major League Rules when he did them. This article and Major League Baseball would like you to believe that steroids were banned implicitly by commissioner Bowie Kuhn in the league’s first drug policy in 1971. Then Fay Vincent and Bud Selig explicitly banned them in memos in 1991 and 1995 respectively.

The problem is that the League had no power to conduct drug tests. They couldn’t possibly investigate or prove the use of steroids, and it’s arguable they couldn’t punish a player for using them. Strictly speaking they did, but the Players Union had the power to contest any punishment.

So if something is “against the rules” but there’s no recourse for enforcing that rule, is it really against the rules? Technically yes, but if that isn’t the definition of “turning a blind eye” to something, I don’t know what is.

And yet, players like McGwire take all the blame in the court of public opinion. Why aren’t we crucifying the owners and the union? They’re just as much to blame.


On the plus side, this might finally get Roger Maris in the Hall-of-Fame. No he didn't have the career numbers, but 61 non-juiced home runs is 61 non-juiced home runs. If you do something no one's been able to do in 49 years without cheating, that's got to count for something.

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In 1789, the governor of Australia granted land and some animals to James Ruse in an experiment to see how long it would take him to support himself. Within 15 months he had become self sufficient. The area is still known as Experiment Farm. This is my Experiment Farm to see how long it will take me to support myself by writing.