The hottest topic in baseball over the last half-a-dozen or more years has been steroids and other performance enhancing drugs (PEDs). The scope of steroid use is massive, involving players at all levels of the sport. Many believe the steroid scandal has cast a shadow on the game of baseball forever. Fans had to listen to Jose Canseco try and earn a buck by calling players out, then read the long Mitchell Report, followed by watching the painful congressional hearings. We witnessed Mark McGwire and Roger Clemens vehemently deny their connection with PEDs and, just this week, we are still watching Barry Bonds being indicted. Severely increased testing of players and increased penalties, combined with the media coverage should be enough to deter a young athlete from using PEDs, right? Wrong. (more after the jump)
From people that believe the steroid saga will pass as just another era in baseball to the other group that believes the game is forever tainted can all agree on one thing: the MLB is watching players like a hawk to prevent PEDs from returning to the game of baseball. Apparently, young Red Sox pitcher William Abreu has been living under a rock for the past decade and missed the memo on stricter testing. Abreu tested positive for using Nandrolone, an anabolic steroid on Tuesday. He was promptly suspended 50-games for violation of the league’s drug policy and he deserves every day of it. I don’t know Abreu personally, and have never seen him play baseball, but if he was stupid enough to take steroids under the noses of a hyper-sensitive league, then he gets all the punishment he deserves.
By taking steroids and getting suspended, Abreu is further drawing negative attention to the scandal and is essentially mocking baseball and the Red Sox organization. Until this suspension, the Red Sox had only 1 other player suspended for using PEDs, and that was pitcher Felix Romero back in 2005. The Red Sox organization is proud that the game has cleaned-up and there is a strict steroid policy, so to have a young player tarnish that image for self-serving reasons is inexcusable and disrespectful. No one can claim ignorance anymore when even the most removed, non-sports fan knows about PEDs and illegal steroids, so what is Abreu’s excuse?