To begin with, this blog is not necessarily in defense of steroid use in baseball. To me, it was wrong for these people to be using P.E.D.'s (performance enhancing drugs) to begin with. And just because others were doing it during this time does not make for a good argument in favor of use of the drugs. With that said, there is a reason that this era of baseball has become to be known as the "Steroid Era". Simply put, people were using, upwards of near twenty percent of professional baseball players. (Or forty to fifty, if you listen to Jose Canseco. Which I don't.) The fact it is, the baseball players did it, it was wrong, and it affected the game. Fans have not left the game in droves because of it. Baseball attendance and popularity was at an all time high during this era, and has not dropped too significantly in the years that arrived after the era.
This blog comes in revelation of David Ortiz being outed as a name that was on the list of players that tested positive for a P.E.D. in 2003. Many of you are well aware that I am a die hard Red Sox fan and that this blog is based on that bias. And, it's partially true. Except I have stated ever since the great Alex Rodriguez was outed that the steroid issue needs to be dropped. It does nothing but stir up a hornets nest that no longer needs to be stirred. Sure, some of the shine and luster of these great players are lost, and the shadow of doubt will always be cast on these players. It will be an era of baseball's long history that will never be forgotten. It's time to put a stop to the releasing of names on this list. There's no point of leaking a name or two every month just to keep people's memories fresh on steroids. The baseball fans know it happened, and I believe many of them want to also move on from this topic.
The reason I was moved to write a blog is because a hot topic is whether the Boston Red Sox World Series titles are now tarnished. The answer is no. Two players do no make a baseball team. David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez still had to have hitters in from of them get on base, hitters behind them get base hits, and pitchers still had to pitch good games against teams that had sluggers and pitchers on the "juice". (I'm looking at you, A-Rod and Giambi. And you Andy Pettitte.) Sure, Ortiz and Ramirez put up monster numbers during these years. Ortiz has always denied use and today had no comment. Does that mean he's guilty? Probably, but we don't know for sure. (Yet.) The fact is, these players did not simply win the World Series all alone. In fact, I'm pretty sure it was Dave Roberts and Bill Mueller that helped the Red Sox start the comeback against the Yankees. And Curt Schilling. And Johnny Damon. And countless of other teammates that played their heart and soul out to bring a title to Boston.
None of these allegation should diminish what was accomplished by the Boston Red Sox as a TEAM. Is it unfortunate that David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez allegedly tested positive in 2003? Yes, very much so, just has millions of Manny and Dodgers fans were devastated when Manny was suspended earlier this year. To me, it is just as unfortunate that this list cannot be fully released yet. And it shouldn't be. The players union had an agreement that stated this player would not be named, yet each month a new name resurfaces. It is time to move on and let's concentrate on the races that are shaping up in the 2009 season. Let's concentrate on the good stories, like Josh Hamilton and Zach Greinke. We will always remember this era. The names Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, and Mark McGwire will be forever etched in the echelon of our minds as cheaters. As we do that, let us also remember these players for the gifted athletes they once were. It is time to let the issue die. Let the baseball public turn a blind eye and choose themselves how they want to remember this era. They can ignore it, if they'd like. I mean come on, isn't that what MLB did in the late 90s? That's what I thought...