Baseball’s drug policy could use another look

Baseball needs to look at their drug policy again.

Manny Ramirez is in the news for violating the MLB drug policy. He was suspended for 50 games. Period! No excuses! No reasons! No explanations!

From what I know, he tested positive for a substance that was in a prescription given to him by a physician. I don’t know what the prescription was for. Supposedly the doctor was told that he needed to make sure that whatever was in the prescription, would not violate the policy.

Last year, J.C. Romero wanted to take a legal, over-the-counter supplement. He thought he went through the proper channels to make sure he was not in any violation of the MLB drug policy. He asked his trainers, strength and conditioning coaches and called the MLB Players Union--all of whom said that the over-the-counter supplement was not in violation of the drug policy. Then he gets a positive test and is suspended for 50 games.

How can someone taking a supplement or prescription from a doctor for a medical condition be looked upon the same as someone who took anabolic steroids without notifying anyone or asking the proper questions. I’m not saying there shouldn’t be a penalty. But I do think each case should be looked at independently. To have a player labeled as a cheater and a drug user for taking something that they were told was legal and not in violation is ridiculous.

My son Steve, is a player in the minor leagues with the Dodgers. He had to visit a doctor during the winter, and it was freaking me out that somehow there might be a tiny bit of something on the banned list in the prescription given to him. He told the doctor that there was a drug policy that has no grey areas. Even if it was prescribed by a doctor, he would be suspended for 50 games and labeled a cheater. That’s just stupid.

To have no recourse to explain why a failed test might have occurred and that you followed all proper channels is insane. I am no Manny fan by any stretch of the imagination. He has done some things that I just don’t like on and off the field. But, with the information I have at this point, in Manny’s and Romero’s case, MLB got it wrong.