ENG – 102
5 December, 2012
Hall of Famer?
Major League Baseball (MLB) has always been one of the worst offenders of players engaging in questionable behavior. With the MLB featuring as a key example in the steroid debate, how can the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) electors decide which players are eligible to be inducted into the Hall of Fame? Located in Cooperstown, New York, the National Baseball Hall of Fame is in anticipation for new members. An election is held each year, no later than January 15th, for players to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. The electors from BBWAA consist of retired baseball players, which have been active writers for the BBWAA for at least ten years. These writers are able to select up to ten candidates on each year’s ballot. The ballot consists of candidates which have to meet requirements before being eligible for election. Requirements such as, retired players must have been active twenty years before, or ceased play five years prior to the election; along with a minimum of ten years played in the MLB. Voting is based on a player’s record, playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character and contributions to the team(s) on which the player played. A player must receive 75 percent of the BBWAA votes in order to be admitted into the Hall of Fame. All included are essential components in becoming a Hall of Famer. The BBWAA uses these election rules to designate players into the Hall of Fame (National Baseball). The National Baseball Hall of Fame is a venue that celebrates the greatest athletes who have ever played the game. However, it becomes difficult to decide who gets into the Hall, with a sporting world that is notorious for cheating allegations. The most talked about players in the steroid debate include: Alex Rodriguez, Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Roger Clemens. These players have been caught in relations to the steroid debate with notable evidence and should be left out of the Hall of Fame. Doing so will preserve the purity of the Hall of Fame; along with recognizing players who have not tainted their integrity and character by the use of steroids. According to Mike Higgins, players who take steroids should not be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Steroids have become more widespread and it is evident that taking such drugs is illegal and immoral. Players who make an effort to gain a competitive advantage by taking steroids violate the rules and restrictions of the league. Players such as “Shoeless Joe” Jackson and Pete Rose, who knowingly attempted to gain from this competitive advantage, resulted in being left out of the Hall of Fame and even suffered lifetime bans. Most individuals fail to realize that taking steroids “once” does not mean one injection. The general time period that anabolic steroids are taken is three-weeks to six-months. If a player made the decision to take steroids even once in a twenty-year career, they made a conscious decision to cheat the game numerous times. There is no way to know how many steroids or other drugs have been taken in order to help athletes break records, or how poorly these athletes would have performed without them. It needs to be made clear that no player caught using steroids will be allowed into the Hall. Doing so will recognize the players in the Hall of Fame that have achieved greatness without the use of a syringe (Higgins). Steroids are a form of performance-enhancing drug and have been widely used throughout the game of baseball dating back to the late 1980’s. The use of steroids quickly grew and sparked the steroid era that lasted from the mid-1990s until the mid-2000s (Curry 0). The steroid era in baseball was very dark for fans and players alike, as many of the great players from the era were implicated with using steroids or any form of performance-enhancing drug. The door to Cooperstown has never allowed players in that have been linked to any form of drug use....
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