One of the issues I have with pro baseball is that it takes advantage of the fondness we feel for "America's game." How else could a 9 billion dollar industry get away with importing 1/3 of its workers - despite having more than enough Americans available, paying its "apprentices" (spoiler alert, they're not apprentices) less than minimum wage, and not allow employees to change employers (the capitalistic way)?
Now we have a PED theory: the whole purpose of the PED testing program is NOT to make the game clean; rather, it is to make the customers convinced that an effort is made to make the game clean. (Heck, I didn't know that a full 10% of the players have therapeutic exemptions - which automatically make 10% of the players legally juicing.)
It amazed me that pro ball would simply close its eyes when a guy would report with 30 more pounds of muscle compared to just six months before. It amazed me when a trainer would actually find PEDs in a locker and just tell the player to be more careful (in that one instance, the player was caught a few months later by the testing). It amazed me that players openly compare notes on illicit programs.
Every incentive lines up in favor of taking PEDs; those who don't use it are at a distinct disadvantage (and don't even argue the morality - if a player can land a long term contract with generational money, his family trumps any game integrity). The SD Union writer is convinced that PEDs have returned with a vengeance.
Until the clubs have some type of an incentive to make the game clean, PED use will continue to rear its head and distort individual accomplishments. What would happen if a MLB club would lose a roster spot for a positive test (now the suspension is treated as a stint on the DL list; I would argue that because PED use is voluntary, it is NOT comparable); if the player is on a long term contract, the contract is voided and any new contract would require the player be paid the MLB minimum for the length of the voided contract AND they player CANNOT be released or traded, thereby counting as a roster spot) or lose a single digit round draft pick for a MILB positive test? Once the employers are incentivized to clean up the game, progress may be made so that players unwilling to potentially sacrifice future health to the alter of the game can compete on a level field.