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Cheating in Baseball Games

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The Issue

Posnanski’s “Cheating and Cheating” was more about using amphetamines or steroids as a way to create more muscle in a baseball game; the strength level of the players, including their ability to withstand exhaustion. Because of taking amphetamines, baseball players can make more home runs (Posnanski).

Aside from the ‘stealing signals’ case, it is clear that the use of amphetamines or steroids in sports is an indirect way to manipulate the game (Posnanski). In 1922 one of the greatest baseball players named Ken Williams, also used steroids to win games (Posnanski), according to Posnanski. To improve the athletes’ overall performance, many baseball players today are also using the same technique. Since cheating has been apparent in the history of baseball games, the argumentative response of Posnanski to Pete Hamill-one of the authors of the New York Times-is that baseball game has always been played dishonestly.

Cheating in Baseball Games

Position, the Writers, Have Taken

Moller is more likely to break the rules in exchange for his goals. Contrary to the stand of Moller, Posnanski and Ashby have both taken the position that athletes should not break the rules when it comes to the use of ‘performance-enhancing drugs.’

Rhetorical Arguments

A lot of baseball players are indeed cheating in baseball games through the use of ‘performance-enhancing drugs.’ Almost all outstanding players in baseball games are secretly using steroids (Moller). In the article written by William Moller entitled “We, the Public, Place the Best Athletes on Pedestals” provided some reasons why athletes such as the baseball game players are using drugs that can help them win baseball competitions. In line with this, Moller explained that it is common for the general public to treat the winners as ‘gods’ (Moller) or a ‘hero’ (Posnanski). For this reason, some students with low academic performance are more than eager to win the game. Because of hunger for fame or fortune, a lot of past and current school or professional athletes end up using illegal drugs (Moller; Posnanski). 

Although commonly used by the athletes, the amphetamines and steroids are not the only illegal drugs that can be used to enhance athletes’ performance. In reality, some athletes are also using other types of performance-enhancing drugs such as Adderall, dope, Stanolozol, Ritalin, HGH, and Balco products to win the game (Ashby; Moller). In the process of violating the general rules of the game, the use of performance-enhancing drugs can weaken the integrity and fairness in sports because athletes who choose not to use any of these drugs can be in a less advantageous position to win the game (Ashby; Posnanski). Therefore, it is clear that, to some extent, the use of performance-enhancing drugs can significantly distort the true meaning of sports. 

As we all know, playing a good sport is all about being able to open accept victory and defeat. Therefore, regardless of the type of drugs used in enhancing the performance of the athletes, one should not disregard the fact that cheating the game is unethical. Just like in any sports, the ability of each athlete is being measured based on their overall skills, talents, performance, endurance, and physical strength (Ashby). Each time an athlete decided to use ‘performance-enhancing drugs,’ respect to other players can be compromised.

On top of the ethical issues or concerns, there are other reasons why these drugs should not be used in sports. First of all, the use of these drugs can trigger short-term side effects (Moller) or long-term harm in the health of the players (Ashby). For instance, Ashby explained that the process of injecting oneself with steroids more than the recommended dosage could cause the end-users to suffer from health problems related to endocrine, development of tumors in kidney and liver, heart-related problems and psychiatric issues. Aside from finding it more challenging to quit the drug, the use of amphetamine can cause the end-users a feeling of restlessness, nervousness, sleeping problems, headache, stomach pain, nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and weight loss (Medline Plus; Posnanski). In rare cases, amphetamines can cause chest pain, shortness of breath, seizures, or hallucination, among others (Medline Plus). Similar to steroids and amphetamines, drugs such as Adderall, dope, Stanolozol, Ritalin, HGH, and Balco products can also trigger side effects.

As a common knowledge, it is illegal to use drugs such as dope in sports. As such, Even though the use of steroids can be legally taken with necessary medical supervision, Ashby pointed out that steroids should never be used in sports. Therefore, aside from the issue of sports integrity and health-related problems, the use of ‘performance-enhancing drugs’ can bring about severe legal problems on the part of the players.

Argumentative Statement to the Naysayers

After facing the need to choose between having a low grade in school performance or to break the rules, Moller said that it was so much easier for him to break the rules by taking steroids to become a good A-Rod player than to have a better grade in school activities. Considering the twisted mentality of Moller, this person should consider the long-term effects of his action. In general, sports activities in school is only one stage in life wherein the students may choose to become active. With this in mind, Moller can anytime lose his fame in sports right after completing school. In case Moller can have the opportunity to join a professional baseball team, he can still lose his fame by the time he reaches a certain age. In case Moller would focus on improving his academic performance, there is a higher chance wherein Moller can enjoy a better quality of life in the future. Aside from having a better long-term career option, having excellent academic performance can also help Moller build more confidence in himself as a person.

It is part of the reality that hospital admission and medication requires a lot of money. Considering the possible health consequences of becoming dependent on the use of performance-enhancing drugs, people such as the case of Moller can face serious financial problems when they reach old age. Specifically, the financial burden caused by psychological or physical illness does not outweigh the benefits associated with winning a baseball game. For this reason, naysayers should think twice before they decide to cheat a baseball game.


Aside from being strictly regulated, the integrity of sports activities such as a baseball game should be well preserved at all times. Regardless of the argument, something unethical will always remain unethical. The use of distorted art of reasoning will never make something unethical turn out to be ethical in the eyes of the readers. For this reason, when joining any sports, it is essential to educate people about the need to restrict or ban the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

At all times, the long-term health, financial, and legal consequences of cheating any sports game do not outweigh the short-term fame associated with winning the game. In general, the rhetoric argument aims to persuade readers using information that will support one’s claim. For this reason, educating people about the long-term health, financial and legal consequences of using performance-enhancing drugs is essential. Using general facts and figures, it is possible for the writer to easily convince the readers about why athletes should never break the rules when it comes to the use of ‘performance-enhancing drugs’ in sports. 

  • Ashby, April. “Why Steroids Have No Place in Sports.” n.d. Web. 8 November 2014 <http://law.marquette.edu/facultyblog/2010/10/20/why-steroids-have-no-place-in-sports/comment-page-1/>.
  • Medline Plus. “Dextroamphetamine and Amphetamine.” n.d. Web. 8 November 2014 <http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a601234.html>.
  • Moller, William. “We, the Public, Place the Best Athletes on Pedestals.” n.d. Web. 8 November 2014 <http://theyankeesdollar.blogspot.com/2009/05/those-who-live-in-glass-houses.html>.
  • Posnanski, Joe. “Cheating and Cheating.” 1 March 2010. Web. 8 November 2014 <http://www.kcsr.org/oldposts/kcsr-archive-20100520/www.kcsr.org/archive/index.php/t-53823.html>.

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