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Posts Tagged ‘sports fans’

If you’re a fan of baseball, which I am, the recent report from George Mitchell about steroid use is disappointing. It’s also unsurprising.  Maybe that’s because the other sport I loosely follow, professional cycling, has also been severely injured by recent drug use revelations. Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig made clear in a statement that although specific ballplayers whave been singled out in the report, there’s plenty of blame to go around – owners, managers, coaches and trainers. He didn’t mention fans, of course, and most of them professed shock that their heroes had allowed themselves to be seduced by the promise of performance-enhancing drugs. They worried about the accuracy of new records, the fairness of nominations to the Baseball Hall of Fame (Roger Clemens is up for a slot) and, oh yes, the kind of example it sets for their kids. Given the problems of steroid use among young high schoole athletes, I shouldn’t wonder they’d worry. Then again, given the recent spate of stories about overly-amped up parents with an eye on athletic scholarships pushing their children to succeed at all costs, maybe it’s the kids who should worry.

Frankly, the fans need to take some responsibility here. They’re the ones forking over the dough to see professional sports. Given the cost, they want more, which is understandable: harder faster, more speed on the ball, more balls out of the park. But come on. How do they think these high-priced guys pushing  past thirty-fives deliver the goods? What do they imagine sports franchises overlook in pursuit of the electric excitement they think their ticket-holders crave?

So what’s it gonna be, fans? More of the juiced up performances we’ve come to know or perhaps something a little less frenetic? There are plenty of talented players who don’t use drugs – or at least I will continue to hope so. Let’s send a message to the owners, managers, coaches, trainers and players that we, as consumers, are unwilling to accept a tainted product.

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