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My original intention was to try and find a correlation between the increase of

media and the increase of cheating in the MLB. I have since read a blog called Juicin in
the Majors: A History of Steroids in Baseball, posted on NYULocal, by Joshua Z.
Lavine. NYULocal is a blog site run by NYU students. In this article, Lavine shows that
PEDs or performance enhancing drugs have always been around, but not in the same
ways as they are today and the newest suspension punishments. However, it seems to be
more prevalent between 1998-2001 according to Lavine.
Lavine talks about how a few players near the beginning of the 20th century. For
example, Pud Galvin, a pitcher for the Pittsburgh Alleghenys in 1889 used BrownSequard Elixir, which Lavine analyzes as testosterone from dogs and guinea pigs. He
even talks about Babe Ruth using extract from sheep testicles in 1925.(Lavine 4)
Lavine says he got sick and was out for a while. Even though cheating has always been
around, it would not be taken too serious for along time.
The issue of using PEDs is not just a contemporary issue. Seeing these examples
have taught me that cheating, using drugs, has always been an issue, but only recently in
the past two decades, or so, has been taken seriously. In an article by Zachary D Rymer,
an MLB Lead Writer, called Proof that the Steroid-Era Power Surge in Major League
Baseball Has Been Stopped, Rymer says, in short, that PED testing has only been
around for about ten years. Going back to Lavine, he starts talking about the
punishments of being caught using PEDs. They are, 50 games for a first time, 100 games
for a second time, and lifetime ban for the third time. These stricter suspensions were
just put into place in the 2006 baseball season.
In the years between 1998 and 2001, there was an impulse in hitting by a few
popular faces named Barry Bonds, Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa, who have all been
caught using steroinds. In this time period, Lavine says that these hitters hit 60
homeruns a combined seven times( Lavine 7) which is ridiculous considering from 1927
to 1998 only Babe Ruth and Roger Maris had ever hit 60 homeruns in a season. This
goes back to Rymes article talking about the Power Surge. His argument is that the
Steroid Era is over since the new suspension punishments in 2006. He uses a graph
illustrating ISO, which means Isolated Power or slugging percentage that ignores
singles(Rymer 5), per year. In this graph, ISO increases around 1997 and hits the peak
around 2000, but slowly decreases after that.
As a baseball fan, I am concerned about the integrity of the game of baseball. I
understand that cheating has always been around in the game and still is, but it does not
always have to be part of the game. In saying this, I am all for the suspension
punishments that are in place right now and maybe, in some cases, too light. 100 games
is not a full season and for some people, it might take a full season to really understand
the seriousness of cheating. Take Alex Rodriguez for example, which I will talk in more
detail in a later blog. If he gets caught one more time, he will be banned for life because
he has already been caught twice. He spent all last year on the bench and so far, is clean
of drugs. I believe he learned his lesson.
Rymer, Zachary D. "Proof That MLB Is Past Steroid Era." Bleacher Report.
Bleacher Repor INC.; Turner Broadcasting System INC., 22 May 2013. Web. 15
Mar. 2015.
Lavine, Joshua Z. "Juicin' In The Majors: A History Of Steroids In Baseball - NYU
Local." NYU Local. NYUlocal, 18 Feb. 2013. Web. 16 Mar. 2015.

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