Fans Disappointed, Not Surprised

Fordham Students Reflect on Alex Rodriguez’s Steroid Use and What May Happen Next


Published: February 26, 2009

There was once talk of Sammy Sosa and Mark McGuire being the best in the game. Fans called Rafael Palmeiro a natural. They once said Barry Bonds could be the greatest ever. But now the secrets of the steroid era are being revealed, and it seems every player has something to hide.

Now Alex Rodriguez (A-Rod), the MLB’s golden boy, has admitted to taking injections of performance-enhancing drugs after test results from 2003 were leaked. Surprising? Hardly. Baseball allowed what was once a cold sore that showed up in the clubhouse every now and then to grow into an epidemic. With the New York Yankees set to begin exhibition games in the coming week, Fordham students voiced their opinions on A-Rod’s drug use. Most are not surprised, and a few a bit shocked—but there is no question that all of them are appalled.

“Honestly I wasn’t surprised by the news,” said Richard Scott, FCLC ’11. “Whatever happened to hustle, hard work and sweat? Back in 2000, A-Rod was portrayed as an iconic figure and a role model for children, [someone] who was supposed to save the sport and bring it back to its glory days.”

Hussein Sayed, FCLC ’12, was not astonished by the development either.

“A-rod’s steroid use wasn’t a surprise because he was way ahead of most players,” he said. “He did it with so much ease, I knew something must’ve been up.”

Fans have recently grown aware of the game’s laissez-faire attitude toward drug use during the steroid era, but Rodriguez’s reputation has still taken a major hit.

Raymond Tam, FCLC ’11, said, “It’s whack that he took ‘roids because so many people looked up to him. He [messed] up his reputation. There should definitely be some consequences.”

Scott said, “What really bothers me about the situation is that he went on ‘60 Minutes’ and flat-out lied about his usage during 2000-03. How can we logically believe that he quit doping after winning the MVP and reaping millions of dollars?”

Some Fordham students also hope the Rodriguez revelation will be the tipping point that will lead to real change in the way fans look at drug use in the game.

“I think those years with all those home runs by McGuire, Sosa and A-Rod are going to go down as a dark area in baseball history,” Sayed said. “They should test more and teach a lot of the youth about the impact of steroids.”

Yet the question remains: when the Yankees take the field on April 3, is any of this going to matter? We have seen hometown fans turn on the third basemen before when his performance has lagged.

Then again, if A-Rod starts the season by putting up MVP-like numbers, all of this controversy may disappear in the minds of New York fans.

“I think, especially in New York, fans are greedy,” Sayed said. “If he puts up good numbers, that’s all the fans will care about. It’s the kind of city that just cares about winning.”