The following editorial appeared Friday in the Dallas Morning News:
In the arcade game Whac-a-Mole, players get points for pounding a mole with a mallet each time one pokes its head from a hole. Keep whacking away, but your arm is likely to fall off or you'll run out of money before the moles stop popping up.
Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig must know this feeling. Just weeks after MLB announced groundbreaking, extensive blood testing of players for illegal use of human growth hormone, the Miami New Times last week broke a story linking active MLB players, including New York Yankee Alex Rodriguez, with a now-defunct clinic that allegedly specialized in providing banned performance-enhancing substances to athletes. The newspaper cites handwritten records of drug sales of testosterone creams, IGF-1 and human growth hormone in ledgers containing player names, dates and alleged transactions.
Baseball still has a drug problem, but this time, MLB may be ahead of the headlines. This season, Major League Baseball and the players union added random, in-season human growth hormone blood testing.
We'll leave it up to Major League Baseball officials and federal authorities to decide the guilt and punishment of players implicated in the latest scandal. Nonetheless, baseball's top leaders deserve praise for finally engaging in a technology arms race with cheating players.
Baseball knows it has a credibility problem. After much foot-dragging, management and the players union seem committed to cleaning up the sport.
The Whac-a-Mole game is far from over, but Major League Baseball is no longer ignoring reality.