Twelve-time All Star Mark McGwire undoubtedly deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. He received just 23.7% of the votes for this year’s candidates; it was his fourth year on the ballot.
I understand that the reason McGwire is not getting elected is because of his steroid use. He did in fact use steroids during all or part of his career. What’s the big deal? I fully understand the stigma surrounding performance-enhancing drugs, but we must look at the player within the context of the time he played.
Everyone was taking steroids (overstatement). McGwire was no different than the majority of Major League Baseball players during his tenure. Regardless of what he may say now in retropsect—”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.”—he chose to use steroids and he knew exactly what he was doing. He has been punished long enough.
He revitalized the game of baseball. Along with Sammy Sosa in 1998, McGwire put fans back in the seats, drove up revenues and got people re-interested in baseball. Moreover, PED’s were not illegal by baseball’s rules during McGwire’s career.
We worshiped him when he played. It is wrong to vilify him now.