Today’s report by the New York Times revealed David Ortiz to be the latest in an ever-growing list of Major League Baseball players guilty of using illegal performance enhancing drugs (PEDs). Ortiz’s name is now included on what has become an overhyped and mysterious list of names that tested positive back in 2003, before mandatory testing was put into place.
The owner of the Chicago White Sox chided the baseball players’ union for blocking efforts to rid the sport of performance-enhancing drugs, even making a play on words on a famous presidential quote related to the union chief.
Jerry Reinsdorf, speaking at a sports law conference in Chicago, said the important topics facing Major League Baseball have not changed since he last spoke to the lawyers’ group in 1983, but the drugs used by those players who do break the rules have changed from cocaine.
“Now we have steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs,” he said, adding that such drugs give users an unfair advantage over clean players, put users’ health at risk and their use sets a bad example for children.
Despite improved drug testing, Reinsdorf, who also owns the National Basketball Association team in Chicago, said baseball still must deal with human growth hormones, which current tests cannot track.
For that reason, blood tests are likely needed, but the Major League Baseball Players Association union has resisted that approach, he added.
“I believe the game needs to be cleaned up or we’re going to lose fans,” Reinsdorf said.
“Manny being Manny” was the shrug-it-off saying coined by Red Sox fans when sweet-swinging outfielder Manny Ramirez would do something flakey on the field, like disappear into the old-time scoreboard built into Fenway Park’s Green Monster wall to relieve himself during a game, or step in front of another outfielder’s throw and cut it off, or decide he needed to take a day off for an ailment and then forgot what specifically was hurting.