Monday, April 04, 2005


Alex Freakin' Sanchez huh?

This is too good to be true in a way, when it is guys like Alex Sanchez who get officially caught redhanded in the present tense as a steroid user. Sanchez received a 10 game suspension, and MLB's new steroid policy is officially in effect. Sanchez of course is fighting the decision, but why shouldn't he? His career slugging line hasn't cracked .350 yet, and you all know how much I love his "skills". He's so ineffective he could use his career stats as his defense and win. But like I said, in a way this is good. So far connected to steroids (or accused of use) are Barry Bonds, Jason Giambi, Gary Sheffield, Jose Canseco, Ken Caminiti, Mark McGwire, Jeremy Giambi, Manny Alexander, and Alex Sanchez...wait what the hell are those last three people doing on the list? Giambi, Alexander, and Sanchez aren't exactly known for their bats. In fact, Jeremy Giambi is best known for his ability to take a walk, or in Boston, to lose his spot in the order to David Ortiz with no one really caring. They don't exactly meet the stereotypical juiced up slugger image, which brings me to an idea I want to share, and please, criticize me as much as you want.

What if steroids don't actually enhance your performance as much as advertised by the media, since all they essentially do is make you stronger, i.e. overly muscular?

Geez, the media overhype something? Noooooo way. Isn't it possible, especially with the excellent (and seriously, who is better at this than Bonds and the Elder Giambi) batting eyes of many of these linked-to-roids' sluggers, that it is honestly a natural talent that is bringing them along, and much like the corked bat theory (that it doesn't actually enhance performance) it is all a mirage? Do we have huge guys hitting homeruns due to steroid use that would normally hit homeruns as slightly smaller guys? Granted, a few flyballs might go over the fence due to the extra muscle, but wouldn't some of that be negated by say, balls that should be shallow outfield singles or doubles turning into flyball outs? If muscles were everything to the game, wouldn't Gabe Kapler and Brad Fullmer hit 72 homeruns in an off-year (by the way, don't ever do a Google search for Brad Fullmer or Gabe Kapler unless you plan on seeing Chippendales like pictures...I was surprised and now don't want to link images up). Wouldn't David Ortiz and Calvin Pickering, two monsters of men, each share some of the homerun crown? They naturally have what steroid users have to purchase and inject. Adam Dunn is another really big player; what happens if he hits 57, 58, maybe even 60 homeruns some year? Do we accuse him automatically? What about the 50 homerun season of toothpick Shawn Green, whose swing was likened to Ted Williams, who also was not the biggest guy with a bat in his hands.

It is obvious by the cases of players such as Jeremy Giambi and Alex Sanchez that natural talent is necessary in the steroid equation, if there is even such a thing. Maybe this will force people to realize that steroids do not automatically make you a slugging homerun threat, and that they are more of a health risk than an improvement to your game. Maybe between this discovery of Sanchez's use and "The Juice" by Will Carroll showing the health risks of steroid usage, the countries eyes will slowly open up to some more truth. Of course, the saddest part of all of this is that Alex Sanchez's chances to be a first ballot Hall of Famer are all but gone now...

Note: This doesn't merit its own column, but former Red Sox pitcher Brandon Lyon has been named the closer in Arizona...desperate for a closer, I quickly snagged him off free agents for my fantasy team. Lyon was dominating in the spring, but as we all know, that doesn't always promise success. Expect Lyon to get enough saves to help your fantasy team without hurting your rate stats too much in Arizona if he can stay healthy.

If steroids doesn't give you an advantage why did all of these guys take it? Healthy life was too boring? Baseball was too easy without it?
What I said was that maybe steroids don't enhance performance to the extent that many people believe they do, that it is more of a perceived enhancement than an actual one...I'm not saying they never helped anyone at all.
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Steroids have been improperly labeled performance-enhancing. What they actually do is accelerate the recovery process unnaturally. That's mostly why guys take them. That is most definitely why pitchers take them.
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