Steroid Abuse by Athletes

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On a warm, sunny morning on July 24 in the year of 1964, Barry Lamar Bonds was born in Riverside, California. He was born the son of Patricia and Barry Bonds, a former major league All-Star. As he grew up, he attended Juni?? pero Serra High School, in which he excelled in baseball, basketball, and football. During his high school years, Barry was part of the varsity baseball team and was drafted by the San Francisco Giants when he was a senior. Barry Bonds had declined the Giants’ offer and attended Arizona State University instead, where he continued to excel when playing baseball.

After graduating and receiving a degree in criminology in 1986, Bonds was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates and began his major league career in the MLB. Barry Bonds made his major league debut on May 30, 1986 with the Pittsburgh Pirates. In his first season he had 16 home runs, 48 RBI, 36 stolen bases and 65 walks, while playing centre and left field and he batted as the leadoff hitter. In his second season, Bonds obtained 25 home runs, 32 stolen bases, and 59 RBIs. Barry Bonds continued to expand and get better each season.

In 1987 and 1989, Bonds recorded 19 home runs, 58 RBIs, and 14 outfield assists, and was second in the MLB. Barry Bonds received his first ever MVP award in 1990 and continued to be awarded numerous Gold Glove and Silver Slugger awards with the Pirates until 1992. In that year, Barry Bonds opted for a salary too high for Pittsburgh to meet; therefore he was forced to resign. Barry met Susann Branco in August 1987, in Montreal, Quebec, the soon-to-be mother of his two children. They both eloped to Las Vegas, Nevada on February 5, 1988 and married not too long afterwards.

Their first son arrived in 1990, named Nikolai, and their daughter, Shikari, arrived a year later. They then separated in June of 1994 and finally divorced in December of the same year, which was said to be caused by mutual abuse and also said to have been a media affair. Barry Bonds then married again on January 10, 1998 in San Francisco, with Elizabeth Watson. He had one daughter with her named Aisha, born in February of 1999. Despite all of the negative publicity and comments the couple has surpassed, the Bonds’ marriage is nearing its end.

Barry Bonds then followed in the footsteps of his father and godfather by joining the San Francisco Giants in 1993. Barry remained a Giant for another fourteen seasons, earning countless awards and creating new records; Bonds was at an all-time career high. In 2003, controversy began to revolve around Bonds, and was referred to as the “BALCO Scandal. ” Barry was alleged to have lied while under oath about taking steroids. His trainer, Greg Anderson was accused of supplying steroids to several other athletes as well.

Bonds was charged with four accounts of perjury and one account of obstruction of justice, with its trial set to be held on March 21, 2011. On September 21, 2007, the San Francisco Giants confirmed that they would not be re-signing Barry Bonds, leaving him as a free agent, and he still is one currently. Rumours blamed the BALCO Scadal as the reason why the Giants did not re-sign Bonds. Barry Bonds was always an amazing athlete, even before he allegedly began taking steroids. He was going to be drafted into the National League at the mere age of 18 (an offer which he politely declined).

He had already won 3 MVP awards and passed the 300 home runs mark, before being said to take performance-enhancing drugs around 1998. After the year Barry Bonds was said to have taken steroids, his career was beginning to reach an all-time high, which was rumoured to be the effect of steroids on Bonds’ body. There were tests done that conclude that Barry may have used a steroid-like substance, leading to his rebuttal, in which he attempted to place the blame on his trainer for “tricking” him into using steroids.

This may have been Barry Bonds’ way of trying to remove the responsibility of taking performance-enhancing supplements from himself and onto his personal trainer, Greg Anderson. Even if the rumours weren’t true, the allegations thus led to the downfall of his career. Supposedly, his career lasted for another 9 years, after his substance abuse, but ended in 2007 when his contract with the San Francisco Giants expired and they did not sign Bonds again. Barry hasn’t retired yet, and as a free agent he is still looking for a contract, although he may not receive one due to his alleged steroid use.

Why Athletes Use Steroids: There are several psychological and sociological reasons for why athletes would like to and have used steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs. One of the big causes of steroid use is low self-esteem; an athlete may be insecure and is scared of performing poorly, letting fans down, or of embarrassing themselves, so they look towards drugs to enhance their performance. Sometimes athletes believe that if they don’t look bigger or stronger than others, they aren’t as good as others, which isn’t always true.

Other athletes may be aiming to be number one and nothing less, but they want to take a short-cut by using steroids, so they can get instant results. They believe that once they perform better, they can also make more money, get more endorsement deal, and more. Constant pressure from teammates, coaches, and society leads to the use of this drug, therefore the athlete cannot always be blamed. These all may be liable reasons, but they aren’t good enough to make steroid use acceptable.

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