Don’t overreact to Gordon PED suspension and lose sight of history

Major League Baseball suspended Dee Gordon for 80 games, after the Miami Marlins second baseman tested positive for exogenous testosterone and clostebol. The resulting backlash reminds us that far too many people have no idea what unions are supposed to do. Including some of the members of those unions.

Justin Verlander is one of those people. The All-Star Tigers pitcher took to Twitter late last night to voice his disapproval of the sport’s process for performance-enhancing drug suspensions. Among other things, that process stipulates that a player may appeal his suspension and continue playing in the meantime, until he drops the appeal, or the case is otherwise resolved. Gordon had tested positive in spring training, and played in 21 games before dropping his appeal. That slate included a game-tying hit in last night’s 5-3 win over the Dodgers, completing a sweep for Miami.

If Verlander or other players play without the benefit of PEDs, only to get beaten by players found to have used them, anger and frustration become wholly reasonable reactions. But venting that anger and frustration publicly is a counterproductive approach that threatens to undermine decades of progress in the sport’s labor relations. And it’s Verlander and his fellow players who stand to lose the most.

MLB has had 21 years of unbroken

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