Posted at 9:49 AM on May 10, 2005
by Ben Tesch
In the first year of toughened steroid testing, home runs are down in the major leagues for the first time since 2002, down 8.8% in the first 5 weeks of 2004.
Is it too early to draw any conclusions, or have you got a good theory?
Well, the cause-and-effect suggest in the article is questionable science. It's not just Bonds. Jim Thome in on the DL too. Between the two of them that should be about 20-25 homers right there. There's 2-3 percent right there. The other thing is some of the big boppers of the last 10 years have aged themselves out. Sosa comes to mind.
There are, on the other hand, a LOT of guys having really bad starts. Is it a slump? Is it this real them? I don't know. I DO know that Ronnie Belliard has 6 dingers already this year...half his total of last year. David Ortiz has 9, he's on schedule. Paul Konerko can't hit anything BUT homers. Carlos Lee is on track for another 30-homer season.
It's also been a VERY cold spring in places like Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, and New York.
And how do you explain Brian Roberts? (Although 'fluke' comes to mind)
For the most, too few games have been played to render any scientific analysis meaningful.
And, of course, the big problem is we don't know who is or was on the juice in the first place.