Monday, February 09, 2009

Cheater Cheater

Use of steroids is a hot topic in today's sports world. They have become even more media tasty since the whole Rafael Palmeiro saying "Let me start by telling you this: I have never used steroids, period. I don't know how to say it any more clearly than that. Never."pointing his finger at a Congressional hearing in 2005. There was rampant and detailed use in the NFL during the 80's, "professional" wrestling in the Vince McMahon era, and now baseball.

Barry Bonds is the poster child of steroid use in MLB. Books have been written alleging the use, and he of course has denied ever taking anything. Roger Clemens has been accused and the evidence is very damning. But those players are..well old. They are not the face of MLB.

Enter Alex Rodriguez.

He is the face of the younger generation of baseball superstars. When the use of steroids started to come out in Major League Baseball he denied ever using. This is an interview he gave to Katie Couric on 60 minutes.

Now the truth has come out. He did use steroids. Not once like Andy Pettitte, but for three years. "When I arrived in Texas in 2001, I felt an enormous amount of pressure, felt all the weight of the world on top of me to perform, and perform at a high level every day," Rodriguez told ESPN's Peter Gammons in an interview 48 hours after the report came out that he tested positive in 2003.

Should all of his numbers be wiped from his stats and MLB records? Maybe an asterisk next to his final career numbers? This is a slap in the face of every player that has earned his stats by hard work, not liquid in a needle. Since steroid use was not against the "rules" when he took them he can't be punished now. But in a sense he will be punished for the rest of his life by being branded a cheater.

I have never agreed with athletes being role models and this is why.

An extended interview will air tonight on SportsCenter at 6 p.m. ET.

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