In baseball, steroids began to be considered banned substances in 1991, but the top league players’ PED tests did not begin until the 2003 season. Experts believe that “the Steroids Era” in the baseball began in the early 1980’s, which led to a significant increase in productivity in the offense, especially the number of long-range hits. For example, in 1961-1994, nobody managed to knock out 50 home runs per season, whereas in 1997 this record was beaten by two players at once. These players were Mark McGwire & Sammy Sosa. Below you will find out whether Sammy used the banned steroids or whether it is just rumors.
Short biography of Sammy Sosa
Sammy Sosa (Samuel Sosa) is a Dominican baseball player also known as “Slammin’ Sammy”. His birth was in 1968 in the Dominican Republic. He broke into the main league with the Texas Rangers, then in 1989 he started playing for the Chicago White Sox (both teams were in the US League). In 1992 Sammy Sosa changed his team again, becoming a player with the Chicago Cubs (national league). In 2005, the sportsman played one season for the Orioles, the team performing in the American League East division. Then in 2007 he returned to the main league with the Texas Rangers.
A strong right fielder, who took many bases, was discussed for a long time. However, in 1998, Sammy Sosa & Mark McGwire were highly advertised for breaking the record in the number of homeruns for the season. Earlier this record belonged to Roger Maris (61 homeruns). McGwire ended the game with 78 homeruns, while Sosa with 66 ones. Their amiable contest was widely known.
Sammy Sosa achieved the title of the most valuable sportsman of the US league. In 1999, the athlete became the first player to keep the number of home runs above 60 for two seasons. However, McGwire was ahead of him. (By the way, in 2010, Mark McGwire admitted that he used illegal steroids.)
In 2000, Sammy Sosa made 50 homeruns in the US league, and in 2001 he hit 64. Therefore, Sosa became the first baseball player who managed to do more than 60 home runs per season for three seasons. Prior to that, Slammin’ Sammy became the second baseball player in the MLB history (after McGwire), gaining more than 50 home runs in four seasons in a row. During his career, the athlete made 600 home runs.
The reputation of Slammin’ Sammy was worsened in 2003, when he was accused of using a banned corked bat (a specially modified baseball bat filled with cork to decrease the weight). In addition, Slammin’ Sammy was suspected of using anabolics, which further worsened his reputation even more.
Sammy Sosa’s skin whitening
In 2009, the athlete appeared on one of the music shows and everyone noticed that his skin was much whiter than it was a few months ago. The huge rumors around this appearance of the former baseball player forced Sammy to visit Spanish-language TV and deny that he was ill, as well as deny that he hates being black and that his skin color has changed due to the use of steroid injections. The athlete reported that he had been applying special cream for a long time. What is more, according to him, bright TV lights made his face appearance less black than it really was. He also said that he does not think that he looks like the “King of Pop” Michael Jackson.
Did Sammy Sosa use steroids or other performance-improving meds?
In 2009, the NY Times published information that Sosa was allegedly on the list of sportsmen who failed the med test in 2003 to improve performance. However, the NY Times didn’t indicate the source of the data or the medication that Sammy allegedly used. Sosa’s agent told the media that he has no comments.
In the fall of 2016, at a conference in Fenway Park, MLB commissioner R. Manfred told journalists that the anonymous test for the use of drugs to increase productivity in 2003 was unconvincing. He said it was difficult to distinguish illegal steroids from certain remedies that were legal, available without a doctor’s prescription (OTC steroids), and were not banned according to the rules of the MLB. Manfred said it is important that folks understand that even if the name of a particular athlete was on the 2003 list, it is possible that he didn’t use banned substances. In addition, the commissioner argued that the 2003 test should have been confidential and its results should not have been disclosed at that time. Therefore, in his opinion, it is unfair to evaluate baseball athletes on the basis of rumors & unconfirmed positive results of the anti-doping test.
What does Sammy think about this?
In early 2017 Sosa told the journalist: “I never failed a drug test. Never in my life.”
Therefore, we cannot argue that Slammin’ Sammy used steroids, such as Winstrol, Turinabol and testosterone enanthate. We do not have any real evidence at this time. But if we take into account the proven facts of using steroids in baseball by other sportsmen, the idea appears that perhaps Sammy has deceived us. Many players either refused to discuss the steroid issue or said that they did not use steroids. But later it turned out that this was not so.