Since the news of steroids first hit I never really cared all that much. I watched as many sports analysts and news reporters started crucifying these players. They would talk about everything from the tainting of records to the negative message it sends to children.
Then the federal government got involved and this whole steroids thing took a life of its own.
This entire time I always wondered what the big deal was. To me, if these guys wanted to inject themselves with some drugs that would ultimately harm them to get an edge than that was fine with me.
But then I realized it. The people condemning these players saw guys play who did not cheat. I never had that luxury. I started really watching baseball in 1995 when I was nine years old.
To me Babe Ruth is nothing more than a black and white ghost who waddled around the bases and supposedly called a home run. Willie Mays, Roger Maris and all those greats are nothing more than grainy TV images to me.
On the other hand Mark Mcgwire, Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds, Alex Rodriguez and who knows what other players, are guys who I watched play. I saw them live in person at games.
I remember where I was when Mcgwire broke the single-season home run record. I remember watching Bonds hit his record breaking home runs. To me those are the records because I saw them happen.
So now what? You can't go back and say the past 15 years of baseball didn't happen. To exclude these guys from the Hall of Fame does not do baseball any justice. In my opinion history should look at the good, the bad and the ugly.
The steroids era is definitely the bad and the ugly in baseball, but it still happened. Now it is time to move on and find the next great player who will eventually hold the all-time records.
There are tons of players coming up in the minors, all who have that potential to be the true savior of baseball and reclaim these tainted records. I hope this happens so that I can tell my grand-kids that I did grow up watching baseball players cheat, but I also saw guys rise from those ashes and reclaim the sport and the records.