According to ESPN’s Amy Nelson, MLB has just announced it will begin blood testing minor league players for HGH, effective immediately.
Note that minor league ballplayers are not unionized, so they can’t do anything to stop this.
good. I approve.
Reading through many of the reblogs regarding this post, I can’t help but notice how much the public consternation has really affected the psyche of the fan. Comments about how unions are a bad idea, suspending human rights are justifiable, and how important it is to keep professional sports “clean” seems way over the top in their severity.
If you’re one of the many who are against performance enhancing supplements, I have no problems with that at all. But the issue of steroids and other similar drugs is not a black and white debate. Seeing misinformation about how easily random “minor” blood tests will be implemented into the major leagues merely illustrates the disconnect many appear to have about sports. Baseball is a huge business that reels in an almost multi-billion revenue stream. Making the most money for the sport is the most important factor. Not integrity, not honesty, and certainly, not fulfilling some misplaced sense of rightness. Taking advantage of teenage athletes, many of them who have been pressured, coddled, and prodded throughout their relatively short lives, is a grave matter.
Seemingly “noble” blood tests can escalate very easily, and if officials do violate fundamental human rights, who or where do these teenagers turn to receive proper justice? Essentially, MLB officials can hire whomever they want, whenever they want without any outside discussion or recommendation. Do people not see the problems that arise when implementing a major policy change without contributions from the very athletes they’re testing?
Taking random blood tests is a serious enough measure that they they should be utilized for security matters, crime control, and medical research. And even then, consent and transparency is paramount to avoid serious constitutional and charter infringements. Not only are those two essential safeguards non-guaranteed here, people should realize this is only BASEBALL. Athletes take supplements to improve their skills and maximize their potential to get paid in an industry that favours short careers. Playing a game clean or fueled with amphetamines (much more rampant, but not illegal) will not affect overcrowded prisons, democratic governments representing less and less people, or rising poverty rates in industrialized countries one bit. To see such a viscerally negative response to issues regarding professional sports is for lack of a better term, ridiculous.
Forget the shenanigans. Let’s just play ball.