Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro, Jason Giambi and a slew of other names have been revealed with literally hundreds more still undisclosed. Does anyone really care about those other names? Steroids in baseball are the issue and there’s simply no getting around it. The era we’re currently watching and the decade prior has already be dubbed the steroids era, which at least is going to be a metaphorical asterisk in the record books. However, all of the clamoring to figure out what transpired with who did what doesn’t seem to have any legitimacy when it comes to moving the sport back into the graces of its former integrity.
The place to begin with this debate is with the names that are being withheld. Many people want to know who every single person is, but they don’t tend to care when it’s someone who was just called up for a month or two. They want to know who the massive names are; they want to hear someone with Barry Bonds’ stature be called out as someone who tested positive. However, there is no peace of mind large enough to make revealing the names worth it. The disclosure will simply ground the game in decades past rather than focus on the present.
There also isn’t any true value to revealing the names. When it came out that Rafael Palmeiro, someone who had vehemently denied charges had tested positive for steroids there was a massive backlash. However, that backlash evaporated within a few weeks and he isn’t a blip on anyone’s radar. Mark McGwire immortalized himself, but no one thinks of him presently. The fact of the matter is many people are simply looking for the next big name to sit around and gawk at. Most of these people are looking forward to seeing which pitchers took steroids since it was revealed that over 50% of the positive tests were from pitchers.
The tabloid factor that is inherent in revealing names is the main reason why they mean absolutely nothing when it comes to steroids. There is a policy in place (although the policy could be made much more stringent to further deter the usage) and the game is moving forward. Only when it comes to names is it when people begin to make noise.
On the other side of the debate is that many fans demand to know whether or not they’ve been cheated when they’ve invested money and time into the sport. To an extent they are correct; it’s hard to disagree with someone who has spent time and has fallen in love with the sport, but what does a name do for that person? For those who say it would make them feel better, I personally doubt that seeing their favorite player’s name as a person who used steroids being a factor that would make them feel better.
The overall message is that fans should just learn to move on now that measures have been put in place to protect the game because there’s nothing good that’s going to come from digging up the past and shaking the pot.