Last season the Toronto Blue Jays became a surprising powerhouse in baseball after the trade deadline. I remember looking at the Yankees 7 game lead and wondering if it was going to be enough. After the Jays picked up David Price they now had a deadly combination of pitching and hitting.
We all know what happened last year but Price wasn't the only contributing factor....
The Blue Jays new first baseman Chris Colabello made a persevering rise to the Major Leagues last year. He rose from the independent leagues and was a cast off of the Minnesota Twins that suddenly became a new fan favorite. He gave Jays fans hope for a new exciting future and he was productive.
That was last year.
This season Colabello started the season going 2 for 29 with one RBI. The timely hitting and 15 home runs from last season are gone. It's been a rough start and an interesting stat to look at now that he tested positive for Turnibol, a performance enhancing drug on Friday. Interesting enough, it is now looked at as a "rare" drug but Colabello isn't the only known user. Just 10 days previous to his positive test Daniel Stumpf of the Phillies also tested positive for the same drug.
So what is Turnibol?
It is a steroid that used to be popular from the 1960's-1980's that is now considered hard to get. It is also ingested orally and not injected. In a baseball world post Biogenesis and a year long suspension for Alex Rodriguez the message still isn't being taken seriously.
A year away from the game or a lengthy suspension without pay is not teaching these players a lesson. Next year they will just come back and play again. They will play a game and earn lots of money. They will earn a salary that pays more than any other sport and in the mean time they are just on an extended vacation. There is no consequence that they seem to care about.
After the news broke out Colabello made a statement and it made me angry. Here is what he said:
"On March 13, I got one of the scariest and most definitely the least-expected phone calls of my entire life. I was informed by the players' association that a banned substance was found in my urine. I have spent every waking moment since that day trying to find an answer as to why or how? I would never compromise the integrity of the game of baseball. I am saddened more for the impact this will have on my teammates, the organization and the fans of the Toronto Blue Jays. I hope that before anyone passes judgment on me they can take a look at the man that I am, and everything that I have done to get to where I am in my career."
So let me get this straight; Colabello has no idea how this drug got in his system? It's just a freak coincidence after another baseball player was suspended for the same drug, too. Are we supposed to believe that this magically showed up in the water you were drinking or you were framed? Give me a break!
This epidemic is on Major League Baseball, plain and simple. They need to take accountability for all of the illegal drug use and start taking this seriously. If a player takes these drugs, he is admitting that he no longer believes in his talent or hard work and that the only way they can compete is by cheating! Integrity means nothing to this game and that rules are made to be interpreted and are merely suggestions. If Major League Baseball doesn't step up and let these players know that there are consequences to their actions America's famous pastime will be tarnished and we will be giving young impressionable kids a poor example.
I like that Major League Baseball finally took a stand with Jenrry Mejia and gave him a lifetime ban after failing three tests, but it shouldn't take three failed tests. They need to reform the way they treat punishments for offenders. I for one agree with Casey's idea in PEDs HAVE DESTROYED THIS GREAT GAME OF BASEBALL that was written back in 2013. I think a public service announcement is a beautiful thing. It's time to make these players stand up, and talk about what they did, own up to it and play it regularly for years to come.
"Hi Boys and Girls, my name is (INSERT VIOLATOR HERE), I play for the (INSERT TEAM HERE), but I tested positive for drugs and cheated. I am now suspended for (X NUMBER) of games. What I did was wrong. Don’t be like me. I am not a role model. A role model works hard to achieve their goals.”
It's time to take baseball back, and if Major League Baseball wants to look reputable again they need to stand up and be accountable too. It's time to send a real message and show some authority. We want to see some reform here and it's time for baseball to stop looking the other way and show that they have some integrity. All eyes are on you Major League Baseball officials....so what are you going to do?
BYB Senior Writer and Editor
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