Question of the day: Should every record, award, or other accomplishment of those players named in the Mitchell report on steriod use in baseball be asterisked in the books?
Steroid use is cheating, plain and simple. It's no different than writers who plagiarize and blame deadline pressure. Or students who steal a test and argue that they didn't need to cheat, they simply didn't have enough time to study with extracurriculars, etc., so what's the big deal? (Hearing this from friends always pissed me off when I was in high school. And don't get me started on writers who plagiarize. My word choices would garner me an R rating.)
As with all cases of cheating, steroid use is unfair to the players who don't cheat. (Rely on talent and hard work alone to make the cut? Whatta concept!!) Many players named in the report say there's no tangible evidence of steroid use, and that the report is pure conjecture. Maybe their claims would convince a judge and/or jury, and maybe not, but Mitchell's report is full of cashed checks and notes from the players he names. It's enough to hold up in the principal's office.
No matter what happens to the players named in the report--or to the home run records and Cy Young awards they've picked along the way--huge props are due to George Mitchell and those who worked with him on the report for their focus on the future. I hope MLB adopts Mitchell's recommendations for testing, education, and prevention. The game will be far, far better in ten years if it's cleaned up today. And any accomplishments won't need an asterisk.