The murky waters of sports drug enhancement
Three of the leading lights - or dim bulbs - of baseball's steroid era have become eligible for induction into the Hall of Fame. It's not likely that any of them will be voted in this year by baseball writers who get to make that decision despite its inherent conflicts of interest.
Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Sammy Sosa are on the ballot for the first time. All three are suspected of having used performance-enhancing drugs to help produce their gaudy statistics.
Mr. Bonds is the all-time home run leader with 762 and single-season record-holder with 73, and a record seven-time National League most valuable player. Mr. Clemens won a record seven Cy Young Awards and is ninth on the all-time win list with 354. Mr. Sosa is eighth on the homer list with 609.
Many sportswriters have declared against all three, citing integrity issues. OK, but in the cases of Mr. Bonds and Mr. Clemens, they also should consider that both players had two careers.
Mr. Bonds had 400 homers and 400 stolen bases, along with several gold gloves, long before he became suspected of using PEDs. Mr. Clemens was the dominant pitcher of his generation long before his longevity led to suspicions of PED use.
Ms. Sosa's career was good, but not great, before he and Mark McGwire - who has acknowledged his PED use - engaged in their epic home run race in 1998.
First-ballot rejection of the trio might well send a message about disdain over PED use. But that should just begin the debate about whether the players, especially Mr. Bonds and Mr. Clemens, earned their entry before the steroid era began.