Mark McGwire Admits To Steroid Use
Add another asterisk to the long list of records and streaks now in question (which, by the way, makes six). Mark McGwire has finally admitted that he took performance-enhancing drugs before, during, and after his historic string of home runs in 1998.
Before we go any further, I would just like to say…
As quoted on Yahoo, here are a few excerpts from his official statements.
• “I wish I had never touched steroids. It was foolish and it was a mistake. I truly apologize. Looking back, I wish I had never played during the steroid era.”
• “I never knew when, but I always knew this day would come. It’s time for me to talk about the past and to confirm what people have suspected.”
• “I’m sure people will wonder if I could have hit all those home runs had I never taken steroids,” McGwire said. “I had good years when I didn’t take any, and I had bad years when I didn’t take any. I had good years when I took steroids, and I had bad years when I took steroids. But no matter what, I shouldn’t have done it and for that I’m truly sorry.”
It’s quite interesting that Mark McGwire says that he wishes he “had never played in the steroid era.” The era has nothing to do with the actions taken by an individual. Ken Griffey, Jr. played during the steroids era (and continues to play, of course) and so far seems to have avoided steroid use or the suspicion thereof.
It is also interesting that while McGwire admits that he took performance-enhancing drugs, he seems to deny the fact that they actually enhanced his performance. In an interview with Bob Costas which aired on the MLB Network, McGwire said:
“I was given a gift to hit home runs… I believe I was given this gift. The only reason I took steroids was for health purposes.”
Health purposes, indeed.
McGwire goes on to say that he started using the ‘roids back in 1994 to recover from his injuries. After recovering, he says that he – for some reason – continued to do it.
It seems that the man known to some as “Big Mac” is trying to slightly renege on his earlier confession. He sounds as if he is trying to somewhat dissociate himself from the characteristics generally associated with a steroid user (or any other type of cheater): selfishness, deception, etc. Oh, and did I mention the fact that he says he can’t remember the names of any of the drugs he used?
Check out part of the interview out for yourself below.
It is said that McGwire’s admission may drastically affect his chances (as well as those of others suspected of steroid use) of getting into the Hall of Fame. Of course, it certainly reopens the discussion on performance-enhancing drugs in sports in general and baseball in particular – especially with so many stones remaining yet unturned. (Clemens, anyone?)
McGwire has chosen to open up because he will be the St. Louis Cardinals’ new hitting coach – with some speculating that he may even be a pinch hitter – this year. Due to the usual media frenzy which comes with spring training, it was best for McGwire to admit his poor judgement now. Basically, this was a self-serving confession which – in the scope of things – makes his decisions and his handling of them even more reprehensible.
Do you accept McGwire’s apology? Do you believe that steroids played no part in his hitting ability or that he has forgotten the names of the drugs he used? Share your thoughts in the comments section!
Main Image: Midwest Sports Fans