Just when we thought the steroid era in baseball was finally over. After MLB commissioner Bud Selig repeatedly said that baseball has the strictest drug testing in all of sports. After we witnessed one of the most epic postseasons in recent memory, the game of baseball has once again taken a major blow.
When NL MVP Ryan Braun tested positive for PEDs, he undoubtedly ruined his legacy forever.
Maybe it’s our fault for letting our guard down and trusting these athletes, but Braun just reminded us how flawed the game of baseball is. It makes me wonder why I even care so much about records and players' statistics because you never know who is a fake.
Ryan Braun is a perfect example of how modern baseball is full of cheaters, and unfortunately for us fans, it will always be that way.
The following are the most shocking MLB players to ever test positive for PEDs.
There was no name in the Mitchell Report that was more shocking than the former New York Yankee great Andy Pettitte.
Just by the way Pettitte pitched does not add up to someone who used PEDs. He was not an overpowering pitcher, but yet a master of his craft and someone with an exceptionally high baseball IQ.
Instead of throwing a 96 mph fastball, Pettitte would paint corners and freeze batters with all the different types of pitches he could throw. His numbers are as good as they come, but now there will always be an asterisk next to it.
However, I do commend Pettitte for publicly admitting to using PEDs in the 2002 and 2004 season. Maybe that’s why his name often goes unmentioned when talking about the all-time great players who cheated.
Gary Sheffield had one of the fastest and hardest-hitting swings in all of baseball. His 509 career home runs rank him 24th on the all-time list.
He was the type of player who was constantly noted as having an extreme amount of raw and natural power. Sheffield also was not obnoxiously big compared to other guys like Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire. So when Sheffield was busted in 2006 for using a “steroid cream,” it came as a surprise to everyone in the baseball world.
Sheffield was using the cream on his knee and claimed that he had no idea it contained steroids. Whether Sheffield knew about it or not, he will never be referred to again as someone with great natural power.
Rafael Palmeiro was supposed to be one of the good guys in baseball. He was known around the league as one of the most respected and well-liked players.
When Palmeiro, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire were all under oath, many believed that Palmeiro should not have been linked with the others.
Not only did we find out that Palmeiro was in fact guilty, but he was the only one of the bunch to actually lie under oath.
Manny Ramirez is another guy who claimed that his doctor unknowingly prescribed him a banned substance. Ramirez was taking a women’s fertility drug, which is normally used by someone who is just coming off of actual steroids.
Ramirez, who got caught in 2009 for using this banned substance, was incredibly shocking because it’s not like Manny was just a dominant hitter for a brief stint. In his 19 year career, Ramirez hit more than 30 home runs in 12 of them. He also was not as cut and muscular compared to most steroid users.
While Ramirez was still a big guy, he was always on the pudgier side, which made people believe it was all natural.
Roger Clemens went from being considered the greatest pitcher ever to now probably not getting in the Hall of Fame. His seven Cy Young Awards and 11 All-Star appearances are just ridiculous numbers.
The Rocket’s 354 wins also place him ninth all time, but the only thing that really matters is he was caught cheating.
I still believe Clemens will get the call to the hall eventually, but it is not going to be on the first ballot.
Still to this day it is hard to get over the fact that Alex Rodriguez is a cheater.
Whether you like A-Rod or not, he is the most devastating player to ever test positive for steroids. Rodriguez is the type of player who could do it all.
He is not just a guy who was a first-ballot Hall of Famer, but someone who many believed was eventually going to be the greatest hitter of all time. Rodriguez has 629 career home runs, 2,775 hits and a lifetime batting average over the .300 mark.
I still think A-Rod will be the only first-ballot Hall of Famer on this list, but now you can close the book on him being the greatest player the game has ever seen.
Ryan Braun is the most shocking MLB player ever to test positive for PEDs simply because the game of baseball finally seemed to be in a post-steroid era.
The use of steroids even started to become an afterthought when talking about baseball.
No one could have predicted this, especially because Braun does not fit the steroid-user type. He does not have extremely large muscles or any previous history of using PEDs.
Braun is supposed to be known to have outstanding character and is someone fans see as a clean-cut good guy. Many people saw him as one of the faces in baseball. It also makes it even worse that Braun is coming off a season where he was just crowned NL MVP.
When baseball was supposed to be at one of its highest points in a long time, nothing could have been more detrimental than the NL MVP testing positive for PEDs.