MLB Drug Policy on PED Test
Major League baseball (MLB) began banning steroid use in 1191, but did not begin testing its players until 2003. Over time time they have slowly gotten tougher with their testing and penalties. Currently, players such as Mani Ramirez are given a 50 game ban for their first offense. After a third positive test for a performance enhancing drug (PED), the player is banned for life.
Most of the PEDs fall in the anabolic steroid group. These drugs are banned because in addition to the perceived benefits of increased muscle mass and strength there are significant health problems related to these PEDs. MLB joins the public in its concern that younger athletes will use them PEDs as Ramirez and other high profile players. MLB drug policy on PED tests are strict and regulations enforcing.
Anabolic steroids can cause fibrocystic masses and/or gynecomastia in men and adolescent boys. They can cause virilization (or masculine traits) in girls and young women with increased facial and body hair, acne, deepening of the voice, increased muscularity, and increased sex drive. In adolescents, these PEDs can cause premature closure of the epiphyses (growth plates in the bones) which can lead to shorter stature. In all, adults and children, these PEDs can cause highly aggressive behavior (“roid rage”), psychoses, and depression (often to the point of suicide).
It is important for the MLB and other sports organizations to take the use of PED Tests seriously. We do not want to encourage our children to use these drugs. The risks are too high. This is why MBL has strict policy in place for PED tests.
For More Information
Steroid Prevention Program Scores with High School Athletes; Robert Mathias; NIDA Notes, Vol 12, No 4, July/Aug 1997
Anabolic Steroids; NIDA for Teens, 2000