December 19, 2014

Gatorade and Pro-Steroid Agenda of Major League Baseball

While high school football coaches like Chris Connolly of Dolgeville High School have banned Gatorade and other dietary supplements out of fear that they may be a gateway to steroid use, Major League Baseball has actually embraced Gatorade as MLB’s “official sports drink.” Major League Baseball has now taken it a step further and banned water from the clubhouse (“Don’t drink the water!” April 23).

Gatorade is Major League Baseball’s “official sports drink.” So instructions were sent that no player could be seen drinking anything but Gatorade in the dugout. Not even Aquafina, which is the “official water” of MLB. Not even bottles of water with the labels removed.

White Sox clubhouse personnel said if players take bottled water onto the bench, all the bottled water will be removed from the clubhouse as punishment.

This policy only reinforces the appearance of a pro-steroid agenda by Major League Baseball. [Read more…]

Missouri Baseball and Football Stadiums Threatened by Steroid Use

State Representative Jeff Roorda has introduced legislation to coerce professional sports in the State of Missouri to change their rules by increasing penalties for anabolic steroid use in their respective sports.

Roorda, a Democrat from Jefferson County, filed a bill today that would bar state tax credits from going to professional sports teams in a league that does not place at least a one-year ban on athletes caught using steroids.

That would mean: No state breaks for the Cardinals, as well as the Royals, the Chiefs, the Rams, the Blues, the state’s minor league baseball teams, or pro soccer outfits…

“Since when in baseball is it four strikes and you’re out?” Roorda said in a statement today.

Never mind that in baseball, it is not one strike and you’re out either. Roorda obviously intends to highlight what he believes to be a weak steroid and doping policy in Major League Baseball. [Read more…]

Unintended Consequences of War on Athletes Using Anabolic Steroids

The federal government’s obsession with eliminating anabolic steroids from Major League Baseball is compromising state law enforcement efforts to fight drug dealers and violent criminals thereby jeopardizing the public safety according to Oakland County Sheriff Michael Brouchard.

“While Congress focuses on the need to eliminate drug use from baseball, law enforcement is struggling to get action on Byrne . . . which fights drugs not just in baseball, but on our streets and in our neighborhoods,” Bouchard said. “Literally thousands of children have been saved from drug scenes by this program.”

[Read more…]

Anabolic Steroids and Power Factor Statistics in Baseball

More websites are covering Eric Walker’s Steroids and Baseball website that we discussed last week, including the New York Times. Walker suggests there is “no evidence” that anabolic steroids have increased home run hitting. He points to the power factor statistics to support his claims. Most baseball fans have never heard of Eric Walker; fortunately the NY Times gives us some insight:

Walker was a National Public Radio correspondent in the early 1980s when he began filling the San Francisco airwaves with his theories regarding baseball — specifically, that on-base percentage was undervalued, fielding was misunderstood and power ruled all. One increasingly intrigued listener was Sandy Alderson, then a young Athletics executive, who soon hired Walker as a team consultant and with him devised the Oakland philosophy now called Moneyball. [Read more…]

Steroids in Baseball Facts and Assumptions

Matt Welch of the Reason blog tells us about a new steroids in baseball website that critically examines assumptions, particularly those in the Mitchell Report, about steroids and performance-enhancing drugs as they related to Major League Baseball. Eric Walker’s stated goal behind the website:

The purpose of these pages is to methodically dissect those claims and assumptions and compare each with what is actually known about it.

He analyzes several steroid assertions and supports each analysis with several scholarly and scientific citations. Some of his conclusions:

  • Steroids and Home Runs: “No evidence” that steroids have affected home-run hitting.
  • Steroid Side Effects: The side effects of anabolic steroids have been “grossly exaggerated.”
  • Kids and Role Models: Adolescents who self-identify with a role model are no more likely to use drugs than those without a role model.
  • Kids and Sports Heroes: Teenagers, overwhelming male, who self-identify with a sports role model are slightly less likely to use drugs.

Source: Reason blog; Eric Walker’s Steroid website

Therapeutic Use Exemptions for Anabolic Steroids in Baseball

Major League Baseball has allowed some baseball players to use anabolic steroids as “androgen deficiency medication” treatment according to testimony at the congressional hearing entitled “The Mitchell Report: The Illegal Use of Steroids in Major League Baseball.” In 2006, three players were permitted to use “androgen deficiency medications” under the therapeutic use exemption.  In 2007, only two players were permitted to use anabolic steroids to treat this condition. Therapeutic use exemptions for amphetamines and related “ADD/ADHD medications” jumped from 28 in 2006 to 103 in 2007.

Efran Marrero, Steroid Withdrawal, Depression and Suicide

The parents of Efran Marrero, a high school baseball player who committed suicide after the use of anabolic steroids, provided testimony at the congressional hearing entitled “The Mitchell Report: The Illegal Use of Steroids in Major League Baseball.”

Three and half weeks after he quit using steroids “cold turkey” my son took his own life – a victim of the deep depression that accompanies withdrawal from these drugs.

This type of emotional testimony really has a strong effect on me as I’m sure it does on many others. Unfortunately, such emotional testimony is useless when it comes to scientifically, logically and rationally informed public policy. [Read more…]

Therapeutic Use Exemptions for Amphetamines in Major League Baseball

The congressional hearing entitled “The Mitchell Report: The Illegal Use of Steroids in Major League Baseball” is underway right now. I have previously discussed the loophole offered by therapeutic use exemptions that allow professional athletes to use performance enhancing drugs, including steroids, growth hormone and/or testosterone. The number of therapeutic use exemptions or TUEs were not revealed in the Mitchell Report.

Congressman John Tierney (D-MA) revealed that Major League Baseball has granted over 100 therapeutic use exemptions to athletes for amphetamines and related stimulant drugs to treat ADHD. Of course, since the focus of the Mitchell report and the Congressional hearings are on the evils of steroids, the continuing problem of amphetamines in baseball will likely not be seriously investigated at this point.

http://oversight.house.gov/story.asp?ID=1685

Cheaters in the Doping Investigation

Much has been made of the lack of integrity in professional sports, most recently in baseball’s Mitchell Report, with revelations of widespread use of anabolic steroids, testosterone, and growth hormone. But few reporters seem to be interested in investigating the alleged improprieties of federal investigators involved in the crusade against doping in sports.

Roger Clemens’ defamation lawsuit against former trainer Brian McNamee vaguely hints at impropriety by federal investigators, including Jeff Novitsky, during their interrogation of McNamee. There is a long trail of alleged investigative misconduct that has followed Jeff Novitsky since the beginning of the BALCO scandal.
[Read more…]

Mitchell Report's Ignorance of Steroid Use in Professional Baseball

The Mitchell Report reveals the general ignorance about steroid use by Major League Baseball players and many other athletes in competitive sports. I would hope that the investment of millions of dollars into steroid use in MLB would result in a basic understanding of the various steroids used by baseball players and the quantities involved.

But apparently this was not within the scope of their investigation. Instead, investigators relied on a survey of bodybuilders and weightlifters to document and determine the manner, methods, and quantities of anabolic steroids used by professional baseball players and presumably all competitive athletes.  [Read more…]