barry bonds steroidsHome runs in the major leagues plummet to 15-year low, and some speculate that it maybe due to steroid testing.

Torri Hunter, outfielder of the Los Angeles Angels, is one of those who say that there might be a link between the drop in home run records and the league’s implementation of steroid testing.

From Sports Illustrated:

“I think the steroid testing has something to do with it,” Torri Hunter said. “If there were any guys who were taking it, they’re not taking it anymore. I’d say it’s a small percentag

When big stars like Jason Giambi, Gary Sheffield and Barry Bonds were implicated in the use of PEDs during the BALCO incident, the Major League was put under pressure to adopt a more stringent steroid-testing program. Prior to the controversy, doping was never a major concern in the pro league.

At the start of the season in 2005, Major League Baseball finally acted and came up with an agreement that attempted to pacify angry lawmakers and dubious baseball fans. Under the new policy, random and offseason testing were instituted.

“I’ve been saying for some time that my goal for this industry is zero tolerance regarding steroids,” MLB commissioner Bud Selig was quoted as saying during the announcement of said new policy.

“We had a problem, and we dealt with the problem,” Selig said. “I regarded this as not only a health issue, but certainly you could say it was an integrity issue in this sport. We’re acting today to help restore the confidence of our fans.”

Many, however, still considered the new policy as punitive. Under the new policy, which was implemented January 2005, a first positive test would result in a penalty of 10 days, a second positive test in a 30-day ban, a third positive in a 60-day penalty, and a fourth positive test in a one-year ban — all without pay. A player who tests positive a fifth time would be subject to discipline determined by the commissioner.

Then on November 2005, MLB owners and players agreed to toughen up the policy some more with these following agreements:

•    First positive steroids test: 50 game suspension.
•    Second positive steroids test: 100 game suspension.
•    Third positive steroids test: Lifetime ban, subject to right to seek reinstatement after two years of suspension, with arbitral review of reinstatement decision.

Every player will have:

•    A pre-season test in connection with spring training physicals.
•    An unannounced test during the season on a randomly selected date.
•    There will be additional, year-round random testing.
•    No matter how many times a player is tested, he remains subject to an additional random test.
•    Testing will occur during the off-season.

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