Major League Baseball's Hall of Fame is every player's dream destination, and the 2013 ballot includes some of the greatest names to have ever played the game; Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Roger Clemens, and Mike Piazza, just to name a few.
These names are familiar to baseball fans everywhere -- not just because of their talents, but for their association to the infamous steroid-era.
All of the nominees put up extraordinary numbers throughout their careers. However, most were either caught, or at the very least, suspected, of using Performance Enhancing Drugs. This of course leads to mass chaos amongst the committee on who to let into the Hall.
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Pete Rose, baseball's all-time hits leader (4,256) is forever banned for betting on games. Rose was never proven to have bet against his own team, so his gambling never directly affected his play on the field.
The point is, if one of the greatest hitters of all-time can be permanently banned, it's going to make it extremely difficult for alleged steroid users to ever get voted in.
Simply put, some of these guys will probably never get the call regardless of broken records or huge stats. What makes matters even more complicated is the fact that Major League Baseball refuses to place any sort of asterisk next to the stats of the steroid-era, so if the numbers stand unquestioned, why should the players not truly receive credit for them?
It also seems very unfair to keep out suspected users who were never actually proven to have used anything. By doing so, it's essentially guilt by association. Suspicions alone shouldn't be enough to keep out worthy players, but there is no doubt that some guys will never get in for that very reason.
The ballots over the next decade will be some of the most interesting in baseball history. The players eligible will have to pass extreme amounts of scrutiny and suspicion in order to be forever enshrined in Cooperstown.
Only time will tell who gets in, and who gets left on the outside looking in.