The dust still has not quite settled yet from the Alex Rodriguez fallout over his positive steroid tests in 2003. While baseball fans are deciding whether or not to be surprised by this, Major League Baseball once again has a very hot issue they wish they never had to handle.
Commissioner Bud Selig will not be able to suspend Rodriguez, but he is likely currently in deep debate with the MLB players' union to decide how to handle this issue, and what to do with the other 103 names who tested positive.
In the end, it is likely that most of the names that fans care about will be leaked, sooner rather than later. Selig and MLB will be forced once again to merely pick up the pieces, sweep up the dust, and try to move on as though nothing happened.
So, since we are crunching as close to rock-bottom as possible, why not try this out: Lift the ban off performance-enhancing drugs.
Yes, that's right, I said it.
Selig, despite what his $17.5 million salary might indicate, is not exempt from the economy's downturn. Fewer and fewer fans are purchasing seats, jerseys, and, incredible to fathom though it may be, beautifully hand-crafted Bobble-head dolls (gasp!).
In 1998, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa almost literally held the defibrillators to baseball and shocked new life into the game. New fans were introduced to the game, and old fans were brought back. It was a glorious time.
Until it became too good. With the "end" of the steroids era came a decrease in the number of 50+ home run seasons and 20 game winners. The fringe fans (we call them "Pink Hat Fans" in Boston) lost interest.
Baseball lost revenue.
So, Mr. Selig, why not lift the ban on PEDs? What do you have to lose? You will now have an easy way to dismiss why the best players under your reign as commissioner were all cheaters and give the fans what they want to see: longer home runs, faster pitches, and a widening of the gap that separates great players from mediocre players.
The players will bring in the guinea pigs, and you will bring in the money. After all, that's what professional sports is all about, right?