Allen Barra: Clearing the Traces.
But, (Mike) Lupica continues, that’s only part of the story.
The rest of it involves performance enhancing drugs, human growth hormone, Pettitte wanting everybody to believe that he only used them twice, and only because he wanted to badly to come back from injury as fast as he could and help his team. Right.
Lupica’s got his facts wrong, though. For instance: Andy Pettitte has never been accused of using performance-enhancing drugs. He has admitted to using human growth hormones (HGH), but HGH is not a steroid, and there’s no evidence it enhances performance. As New York infectious disease specialist Kent Sepkowitz says, HGH “is a relatively sedate amino acid – something people produce throughout life.” It might help repair damaged tissue and bone, which makes it very tempting to athletes like Pettitte, who suffer what might be a career-ending injury (in Pettitte’s case, the elbow of his pitching arm).
And let’s note that on the two occasions Pettitte admitted to HGH use, 2002 and 2004, the substance was not banned by Major League Baseball. Using HGH didn’t become a rule violation until 2005, and there is no known evidence of Pettitte’s use of other performance-enhancing drugs.
The side effects of HGH, especially in large doses, is still largely unknown. But is Lupica or any other sportswriter contending that if their livelihood—or their living—were on the line because of an injury, they wouldn’t risk taking a needle in the backside? If Lupica or anyone else can cite any evidence that HGH boosted Andy Pettitte’s performance, then they should do so. If they can’t, then they should go by the numbers. And the numbers say that Andy Pettitte deserves to be in the Hall of Fame.
Posted: September 26, 2013 at 03:52 AM | 34 comment(s)
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