With news of former Cane (and fellow Heb) Ryan Braun being suspended for the rest of the season for violating the league’s drug program, we need to finally come to a realization.
Baseball needs the drugs.
Everyone is afraid to admit it, from the media to the players to the managers, and even the fans. But baseball needs PEDs like men need women.
“You know we’re clean,” Marlins outfielder Logan Morrison told the media yesterday. “We haven’t scored a run in 37 innings.”
He does have a point.
In today’s world of millisecond attention spans, the game is already too boring for most. The sport is slow. It’s not fun to watch on television, limited to background music for most of the crowd that’s still watching.
I’ll admit I never truly loved the game. I grew up playing basketball and watching football. But I — like many in this country — am a quintessential fan of sports. When baseball is the ONLY sport on during three months of summer, you’d think it would land on our screens by default. Yet this isn’t the case — at least not for me. I’d rather snooze my way through an NBA Summer League game or watch the cooking network than sit through a baseball game.
I don’t know, maybe Loria just ruined it for us. But I know others around the nation feel the same way, and the ratings back it up. Who the hell wants to watch an already boring game that effects just 1/162 of a season. The NBA’s 82 games is even too many.
We love football for its violence. We love basketball for its grace. Where does “America’s Pastime” fit in?
The sport appealed to casual fans when Barry Bonds juiced his way to 73 homers in 2001. It appealed to casual fans in 1998 when two Goliaths dubbed Sammy and Mark pulverized baseballs for supper.
A sphere of yarn and cork blasted 500 feet in the air certainly makes up for the game’s shortcomings.
If you ask whether I think Chris Johnson and his MLB leading 37 home runs is using an illegal substance, I’d be forced to yes. At this point, it’s safer to assume yes than no. Science is so smart in 2013, there will always be a way to beat the system.
Stop fighting it. Stop testing. It’s a waste of time. There’s always going to be new drugs to fool testing programs. Always. We need home runs. We need more Giancarlo Stantons. And Giancarlo Stantons don’t naturally grow on trees.
The sport is already tainted. We have to assume more were using than not using in the late 1990s and early 2000s. EVERYBODY was doing it. The record books should all be asterisked anyway.
Drugs are a part of this game, no different than bats and gloves, it’s just a matter of who gets caught.
Baseball needs the juice. Maybe then it will grow.