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Herodotus
09 Feb 09,, 22:03
Just saw this, thought I'd post it:

NEW YORK (AP)—Alex Rodriguez admitted Monday that he used performance-enhancing drugs from 2001-03, saying he did so because of the pressures of being baseball’s highest-paid player.

“When I arrived in Texas in 2001, I felt an enormous amount of pressure. I felt like I had all the weight of the world on top of me and I needed to perform, and perform at a high level every day,” the New York Yankees star said in an interview with ESPN that was broadcast Monday shortly after it was recorded.

His admission came two days after Sports Illustrated reported he tested positive for steroids in 2003, one of 104 players who tested positive during baseball’s survey testing, which wasn’t subject to discipline and was supposed to remain anonymous.

“And I did take a banned substance and, you know, for that I’m very sorry and deeply regretful. And although it was the culture back then and Major League Baseball overall was very—I just feel that—You know, I’m just sorry. I’m sorry for that time. I’m sorry to fans. I’m sorry for my fans in Texas. It wasn’t until then that I ever thought about substance of any kind, and since then I’ve proved to myself and to everyone that I don’t need any of that.”


The 33-year-old All-Star third baseman was regarded by many in baseball as the most likely to break Bonds’ record of 762. He’s already 12th on the career list with 553 homers, 209 behind Bonds.

Rodriguez hit 52, 57 and 47 homers in his three seasons with the Rangers, winning the first of three AL MVP awards during his final season with Texas, where he received a $252 million, 10-year contract in December 2000.

“Back then it was a different culture. It was very loose. I was young. I was stupid,” Rodriguez said. “I was naive, and I wanted to prove to everyone that, you know, I was worth, you know—and being one of the greatest players of all time.”

He joined Jason Giambi and Andy Pettitte among All-Star players who have confessed to using performance-enhancing drugs. Many other players have denied any use.

Barry Bonds, a seven-time MVP, is to go on trial next month on charges he lied when he told a grand jury in 2003 that he never knowingly used performance-enhancing drugs.

Roger Clemens, a seven-time AL Cy Young Award winner, is under investigation by a federal grand jury which is trying to determine whether he lied when he told a congressional committee last year that he never used steroids and human growth hormone.

SI.com reported Rodriguez tested positive for Primobolan and testosterone.

“It was such a loosey-goosey era. I’m guilty for a lot of things. I’m guilty for being negligent, naive, not asking all the right questions,” Rodriguez said. “And to be quite honest, I don’t know exactly what substance I was guilty of using.”

Monday’s ESPN interview directly contradicted a December 2007 interview with CBS’s “60 Minutes,” when Rodriguez said, “No” when asked whether he’s ever used steroids, human growth hormone or any other performance-enhancing substance.

On Friday, Rodriguez is still expected to attend an event at the University of Miami, which is renaming its baseball field in his honor.

He gave $3.9 million to the school in 2003, the largest gift ever to the Hurricanes’ baseball program and money that provided much of the resources needed for renovating the existing on-campus stadium. In return, the baseball complex will be called Mark Light Field at Alex Rodriguez Park.

Despite the scandal, the facility will continue to bear Rodriguez’s name, a university official said Monday. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because of the matter’s sensitive nature.

Miami baseball players and coaches were not available for comment, spokesman Mark Pray said.

Associated Press Sports Writer Tim Reynolds in Miami contributed to this report.

http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news?slug=ap-rodriguez-steroids&prov=ap&type=lgns

So should a more pertinent question be: Which MLB players did not use steroids from '94-'04?

Shek
09 Feb 09,, 22:25
Other than the placebo effect, I don't think steroids improved performance much at all. Expansion by four teams drove performance more than anything.

Herodotus
09 Feb 09,, 22:30
Other than the placebo effect, I don't think steroids improved performance much at all. Expansion by four teams drove performance more than anything.

Why do you think that? Particularly as previous expansions did not lead to the same onslaught on the record books.

Shek
09 Feb 09,, 22:40
Why do you think that? Particularly as previous expansions did not lead to the same onslaught on the record books.

Steroids add mass and not specifically fast-twitch muscle fiber, which is where power comes from. This mass will make a warning track flyball a homerun, but it doesn't create home run hitters out of thin air. Adding four teams to MLB in the 1990s diluted pitching talent, and the most powerful batting talent was able to exploit the diluted talent base. This dilution was especially concentrated in the NL - McGwire, Sosa, Bonds were all NL. Potentially a coincidence, but I suspect not.

Here's A-Rod's #s. His 2001-3 stats are in a homer friendly ballpark and also reflect the timing of his physical maturity, and so you have competing explanations. Given his #s in the steroid testing era the past few years, I don't think invoking steroids as an explanation for his power in admitted use seasons, which coincide with peak age years and Rangers Ballpark, is that powerful.

http://sabernomics.com/sabernomics/arod1.png

TopHatter
09 Feb 09,, 23:27
Steroids add mass and not specifically fast-twitch muscle fiber, which is where power comes from. This mass will make a warning track flyball a homerun, but it doesn't create home run hitters out of thin air.
So in other words, you have to be a very good hitter to begin with, otherwise all of the batting power in the world doesn't mean a whole lot. Makes sense that you have to connect with the ball properly in order to have a chance at a home run.

Still and all, this "revelation" about another sports figure using steroids is hardly a surprise.

The bigger surprise would be, Which sports stars are not or have not used steroids.

Herodotus
10 Feb 09,, 00:44
Good post Shek, should have known you had a graph for A-Rod. There is no doubt that he had MLB skill and was a clear 40 home-run hitter without the use of steroids. However would he have been a 50 home-run hitter without steroids is the question.

Plus if steroids do not improve performance then why risk health, expulsion, ridicule, etc. and take them? I think there was some benefit. Mark McGwire was a clear 40 home run hitter; hitting 49 his rookie year. However he surpassed that mark, his own personal best, ten years later and again the next year. At the age of 33 and one year before the '98 expansion McGwire hit 58 home runs. No one in history had hit that many home runs at that age or older. Maris was 26 when he hit 61, Ruth was 32 when he hit 60, but had Lou Gehrig hitting behind him.

From there the home run record fell again and again. Bonds hit 49 and 73 homers at the age of 35 and 36 when his previous high was 46 at the age of 28. To me that's the most telling stat-power numbers increasing as the players increased in age. I don't know that expansion can explain all the numbers.

Hank Aaron by contrast was more consistent. He had a career-high 47 homers at age 37 but he also hit 44 home runs 4 times and 45 homers once. In Bonds's first 14 seasons he hit 40+ 3 times, and then from 2000-2004 he hit 40+ five years in a row, and not one year with less than 45 homers. He was injured in 2005 and after that allegations hounded him, I am sure he was off the sauce by then.

Maybe in A-Rod's case 'roids would not have made a substantial difference, but he still took them. He must have thought they had some benefit. To his credit, and possibly to save his HOF bid, he came clean. I agree that expansion had some negative impact on the record books, and baseball expanded too fast, but I don't know that given the number of players who used steroids their stats can ever be separated from the taint of drug use.

Shek
10 Feb 09,, 02:37
Good post Shek, should have known you had a graph for A-Rod. There is no doubt that he had MLB skill and was a clear 40 home-run hitter without the use of steroids. However would he have been a 50 home-run hitter without steroids is the question.

Plus if steroids do not improve performance then why risk health, expulsion, ridicule, etc. and take them? I think there was some benefit. Mark McGwire was a clear 40 home run hitter; hitting 49 his rookie year. However he surpassed that mark, his own personal best, ten years later and again the next year. At the age of 33 and one year before the '98 expansion McGwire hit 58 home runs. No one in history had hit that many home runs at that age or older. Maris was 26 when he hit 61, Ruth was 32 when he hit 60, but had Lou Gehrig hitting behind him.

From there the home run record fell again and again. Bonds hit 49 and 73 homers at the age of 35 and 36 when his previous high was 46 at the age of 28. To me that's the most telling stat-power numbers increasing as the players increased in age. I don't know that expansion can explain all the numbers.

Hank Aaron by contrast was more consistent. He had a career-high 47 homers at age 37 but he also hit 44 home runs 4 times and 45 homers once. In Bonds's first 14 seasons he hit 40+ 3 times, and then from 2000-2004 he hit 40+ five years in a row, and not one year with less than 45 homers. He was injured in 2005 and after that allegations hounded him, I am sure he was off the sauce by then.

Maybe in A-Rod's case 'roids would not have made a substantial difference, but he still took them. He must have thought they had some benefit. To his credit, and possibly to save his HOF bid, he came clean. I agree that expansion had some negative impact on the record books, and baseball expanded too fast, but I don't know that given the number of players who used steroids their stats can ever be separated from the taint of drug use.

You'll like this paper: http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/showthread.php?t=45237

BTW, did you use Stata for your dissertation (not sure if it was strictly qualitative or if you did a quantitative one)?

GraniteForge
10 Feb 09,, 05:52
why the use of steroids -- or any performance-enhancing or any other drug -- by athletes is an issue?

Exarecr
10 Feb 09,, 13:02
I don,t care how tearfully doe eyed and sorry the poor little millionaire is.
The ,awe shucks folks, I was young defence is tiresome. He cheated and didn,t really feel a need to tell anyone because of course it would expose him for what he is.....a fraud and a cheat. Now I know why Baseball has fallen off my sons radar. Nothing changes,not even the excuses. When guys walk on the field looking as pumped as Wily Coyote after taking those leg muscle pills from acme international, a year after they had the physic of a boy ping pong player.......yup,somethings not quite right here, Mr. Baseball Commish,don,t you think.

Albany Rifles
10 Feb 09,, 20:38
why the use of steroids -- or any performance-enhancing or any other drug -- by athletes is an issue?

1. It is illegal to use them except under special circimstances under a doctors care...and some are banned, period.

2. While some anebolic steroids help you build muscle mass, they are most helpful popt workout...they help you recoever quicker so you can work harder more often.

I love when A-Roid said he was a young player just trying to live up to expectations....in 2001 he was an 8 year veteran player.

And since he lied before, do you think he is telling the truth that he hasn't taken them since?

Herodotus
10 Feb 09,, 21:46
You'll like this paper: http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/showthread.php?t=45237

BTW, did you use Stata for your dissertation (not sure if it was strictly qualitative or if you did a quantitative one)?

I am familiar with Stata though I am not using it for the dissertation. My methodology is qualitative case study. I have some data tables, but nothing fancy smancy like regression analysis. :biggrin:

Shek
10 Feb 09,, 22:39
I am familiar with Stata though I am not using it for the dissertation. My methodology is qualitative case study. I have some data tables, but nothing fancy smancy like regression analysis. :biggrin:

Okay - if you were a user :)), then I was going to offer to send you my .dta and .do files if you were interested. The data for the most part comes from www.baseball1.com and so it's really pretty easy to do a lot of the stats work for baseball.

Mobbme
10 Feb 09,, 23:22
You can't just take steroids and expect to see results. Few of my buddies have experimented with roids in the past, the amount of working out you have to do is insane; thats the only way you see results.

Roids can be like a placebo, its just the mind thinking and making you do things you wouldn't naturally do: work out like a machine.

GraniteForge
10 Feb 09,, 23:46
1. It is illegal to use them except under special circimstances under a doctors care...and some are banned, period.


Athletes commonly engage in illegal activities, yet steroid use seems to be given more attention than all the other activities combined. That is what I wondered about.

Albany Rifles
11 Feb 09,, 14:26
Athletes commonly engage in illegal activities, yet steroid use seems to be given more attention than all the other activities combined. That is what I wondered about.

Other illegal activities are usually violatiosn of societal norms. PHDs are seen as a way to cheat within the game.

GraniteForge
11 Feb 09,, 21:14
Other illegal activities are usually violatiosn of societal norms. PHDs are seen as a way to cheat within the game.

That makes more sense. Thank you for the explanation.