What bothers me most about the latest allegation of steroid use, this time by Alex Rodriguez, is that Baseball brought this whole debacle upon itself — and then upon us all.
As long ago as 1999, when it seemed obvious that Mark McQuire had bulked up beyond reason and launched his name into the history books, hitting 65 home runs, the power-brokers of our national game could easily have done one simple thing.
They could have, and most definitely should have, hence forth adopted an immediate zero tolerance policy for performance enhancing drugs, instituting an immediate and permanent ban on anyone caught abusing this policy.
Simple. Obvious. An easy way to enhance the future of the game.
Nothing like this was done when it might have been, and now we are left with tarnished records and spoiled careers, where dramatic feats of polished athleticism will forever be encased in a dingy and tacky shellac of disappointment and doubt.
The guilty will persist in prevarication and, unless all the names of verified users is released, the innocent will have to endure lingering suspicion.
Thus in the blind zeal to attain something great, we are left with a moldering veneer and sickly hue cast over what used to be our green and often glorious fields of dreams.