A fact that has failed to be touched on during this steroid fiasco in baseball is this: Steroids don’t actually help you hit home runs.
To hit a home run you need proper hand-eye coordination and reaction time along with pitch recognition. Steroids do not affect any of these senses.
"Hitting a home run requires accelerating a bat from a stand still to over 70 to 110 feet per second in a few milliseconds. Such a feat requires rapid force generation that can only be supplied by fast twitch muscle fibers," according to Arthur De Vany from the Institute for Mathematical Behavioral Sciences at California Irvine.
What steroids provide is bulk.
In order to get bulging muscles you need a high volume of slow twitch muscles. Slow twitch muscles are counter productive when it comes to hitting steroids as if bulk. If you are bigger, you usually weigh more, which would take longer to get the weight moving and get the necessary acceleration for the ball to sail out of the park.
"Body building, and the slow twitch fiber composition that it produces, could not produce the power and speed that Mark McGwire, Barry Bonds, and Sammy Sosa exhibited in their prime years," said De Vany.
Fast twitch muscles are directly related to speed. Just look at sprinters for an example. No other field of athletes has a higher volume of fast twitch muscles than these athletes who are strictly built for speed.
If a player is not naturally talented, steroids won’t change a thing. If you can’t see the ball, you can’t hit it. Steroids don’t help eye sight.
So why would players take steroids if they didn’t help hit home runs? The answer is simple, and it’s not one you will like. Steroids help the body recover, and over the course of a long season the players need that.
It still doesn’t make it right, but by no means is steroid use directly related to the incline in home runs.
Perhaps Major League Baseball should look at the decrease in ball park sizes. Maybe they should investigate the way new stadiums are built, such as Yankee Stadium, which is allowing home runs left and right.
People need to realize that baseball is just like any other sport. The records and numbers in baseball aren’t any more sacred then those of football, basketball, or hockey.
Records are meant to be broken, so quit trying to find excuses.