The media affects society in positive and negative ways. This can be seen in America’s national pastime baseball. Baseball is a sport that became the national sport in the United States in the late 19th century. From the beginning of the sport they tried to keep the highest standards to each player and ball club. There were times of scandal, but of all the things that happen to baseball substance abuse has been portrayed as one of the worst thing a player could do. To defame the baseball was to ruin everything the sport stood for. This research paper will look at one of the worst blotches in baseballs history, the steroid era.
The steroid era as many know now started roughly 2003, but there was a time in which many forget. In the 1980’s there was a strike, cocaine scandal, a 1985 World Series blown call, and the banishment of all-time leader Pete Ross for gambling (Addona). These were the main things in people’s minds at the time, but they didn’t see that steroids were slowly working its way into the mix. In April 1988 the Los Angeles Times reported that American’s pastime remained “essentially steroid-free” (Steroids). Thomas Boswell wrote for the Washington Post, as a sportswriter didn’t feel the same way. Boswell wrote for the Boswell wrote about Jose Canseco as “the most conspicuous example of a player who has made himself great with steroids.” Canseco would deny the allegations and later on went to win the American League Most Valuable Player. Jose would eventually admit to using steroids in 1985 saying that he took them in the late 1980’s and the 1990’s (Steroids). He says steroids in baseball were as common as a cup of coffee during that time.
Testing wasn’t mandated, but baseball added steroids to its banned-substance roster in 1991. Mark McGwire also admitted in 1999 that he took androstenedione or “andro,” an over the counter precursor to testerone that was later banned by the FDA. Senator Edward Kennedy calls Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire the “home-run kings for working families in America.” New York Times a year later suggested that 40% of major league players have taken stories fell upon death ears (Steroids).
Baseball traditionalists got wind of this after a while though and charged the mound in essence to prove doping was wrong. That doing steroids undercuts baseball as a whole and its records left behind by legends. The medical community as a whole would later back this up and told of the serious side effects that ranged from male breast development to mood swings that would be later known as ‘roid rage. This would not be good for the public because the fans emulate what their idols do and if that’s what they believe needed to be done to be more like them they would. Eventually in almost every high school in the country, young athletes are told about these health risks associated with using Performance-enhancing drugs.
This was only the beginning, soon the media would start to look down more upon what is...