Thursday, July 26, 2007

Doping--The Tour de France and Baseball

First of all I will admit to being a new comer to the whole Tour de France thing. Sure I watched parts of it when Lance was going for six and seven, but I really did not follow it. Since starting my triathlon “career” I have paid much more attention to who the riders are, who the teams are, the tactics and of course to doping.

This week in the Tour we have had 2 racers removed for failing blood tests (Alexandre Vinokourov and Cristian Moreni) and Michael Rasmussen for not being honest on his whereabouts prior to the Tour and missing two pre-race drug tests. Because of these ejections from the race the European media is up in arms with some media outlets not even reporting on the race any more. Personally I am glad to see the cheaters get caught. Just because you have a few bad apples it doesn’t mean the entire bunch is bad. The trick is to remove the bad apples when you find them, so that you don’t taint them all. The more cheaters that can be removed from sport the better.

This leads me to doping in a sport I have played or watched most of my life—Baseball. There is such a cloud of suspension over Barry Bonds and baseball seems to be looking the other way. Why? Is the media interest (ticket sales and TV review) more important than the sports integrity? Or is it the mentality of “if we don’t know about it, it is not happening?”

We applaud the police for catching criminals and keeping us safe. We don’t blame the neighborhood where the criminal was caught. Cycling appears to be doing its part to police the sport—but where is baseball?

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