Rodriguez admission reveals scope of baseball’s steroid problem

I was not very surprised to find out Alex Rodriguez took steroids.

It had already become apparent that steroid use was widespread in Major League Baseball during the 1990s and early 2000s. Jose Canseco, Jason Giambi and Andy Pettitte had admitted to using them, several players have tested positive for banned substances over the last couple years and there has been a lot of smoke surrounding Mark McGwire and Barry Bonds, among many other stars, and their possible steroid use.

That Rodriguez took steroids just shows the scope of the steroids mess baseball allowed itself to become involved with. It wasn’t only a handful of players. Along with Rodriguez, there were 103 other major leaguers that tested positive for steroid use in 2003. That figures out to about one in every seven players.

Unfortunately for Major League Baseball, the revelation that Rodriguez and 103 others took steroids provides more questions than answers. Because so many players were found to be taking steroids, how should the “steroid era” be treated by MLB and commissioner Bud Selig?

Since we do not know all of the players that tested positive for steroids in 2003 along with Rodriguez, how should the record books be affected by players from that era? Maybe any player that played in that era should have an asterisk next to his name in the record books. What about the Hall of Fame? Should Alex Rodriguez be banned from future consideration?

What about Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Rafael Palmeiro, Sammy Sosa, Roger Clemens and the many others who have had their names associated with steroids? Furthermore, should any position player from the “steroid era” be inducted into the Hall of Fame?

I like what Curt Schilling has said about the issue. In his blog, the former Red Sox ace said that all 104 of the players who tested positive should be revealed.

“In my opinion, if you don’t do that, then the other 600-700 players are going to be guilty by association, forever,” Schilling wrote. If baseball wants to clean up the problem and move on, it needs to identify those who tested positive.

If not, there will forever be a cloud hanging around a decade-plus time in baseball history.

I’m sure there were a lot of Alex Rodriguez fans who felt betrayed by his admission of steroid use. Unless the entire list of players who tested positive is released, every baseball fan has to now wonder if their favorite player was clean or not.

Examiner Online Poll: Should all baseball players who tested positive be identified?