Steroids in golf: can we move on please?
I’ve been silent on the “Steroids in Golf” debate. Mostly because it isn’t so much a “debate” as it is a blind witch hunt.
All of this coverage seems to have been fabricated and forced by the press in search of a gritty tour underbelly that doesn’t exist. There is no precedent that suggests golf is as tainted as baseball or cycling. There is very little reason to believe the integrity of the game is somehow being compromised by performance-enhancing drugs.
Gary Player’s comments at the British Open were horribly ill-timed and I’ve got to side with his perturbed countryman Retief Goosen on this one. Player’s no-name accusations should have been featured in ESPN: The Magazine - not at a pre-British Open press conference that resulted in an unnecessary side show.
Our awareness is now so heightened that we’re freaking out about some Italian also-ran testing positive for a common masking agent for steroids (whom he says is for another medical condition). The only thing newsworthy about this report is that Italy in fact has professional golf.
Anyone who plays golf seriously knows that what separates successful touring pros from Hooters Tour wannabes isn’t strength or dedication to practice or recuperation time. They’re all banging as many balls as anyone. Rather, it’s all in the mind. Most mini-tour players on any given day can shoot as low as Tiger Woods - they just can’t consistently. Steroids won’t change that.
Steroids wouldn’t have made Sergio Garcia’s 72nd-hole par putt at Carnoustie, making him a first-time major winner.
Golf is also more about ball placement than distance. I don’t see how steroids could make your wedge shots any more accurate.
That’s the great thing about golf. Unlike baseball, golf is too multi-faceted for any one impurity like steroids to defeat it. Golfers cannot be “specialists” in anything like baseball’s power hitters or relief pitchers.
If these aren’t reasons enough to put this whole circus to rest, consider the Tour’s famously attractive wives and girlfriends. They’re all smoking hot, right? Well, a common side-effect of steroid abuse is sexual dysfunction and shrunken testicles.
If these players want to cheat and take steroids, I say let them. Like most of the world’s vices, God has already created a suitable and ironic punishment for its abusers.
So let’s put it to rest. Please. The only problem with drugs and golf is the bombardment of Cialis advertisements during tournament coverage. I’m subjected to more “erections” and “sex” during The Masters than a complete season of Sex and the City.
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Do you think that being able to practice more could help a golfer?
Aside from adding strength, P-E drugs help the body recuperate, meaning a golfer could practice more.
I expected more from you, padewan. Science exists for a reason, so that we don't have to go with our gut feelings on how things like chemicals work.
Brandon, I'd like to go on and off record and state that my freaking out is now under control, thanks to finasteride. I'd also like to reiterate (having previously iterated) that my most recent steroid blog was a complete fabrication. For those old enough to remember, one of the great hoaxes of all time was the Sports Illustrated piece on Hayden "Sidd" Finch. It was in that spirit that I wrote the piece. Now, about that smoking hot wives analogy. Shrunken testicles and sexual dysfunction are only one part of the package. A successful tour pro can attract all types of companios through her/his game, personality, wealth, etc.