TOO MUCH, TOO FAST, TOO YOUNG: MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL’S STRUGGLE TO CONTROL ITS MENACING DRUG PROBLEM
Thompson, Joseph L. 1971-
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This thesis examines Major League Baseball’s earliest efforts to curb illicit drug usage among their players. The study focuses primarily on Bowie Kuhn and Peter Ueberroth, the first baseball commissioners to directly address the drug issue. Their failure to maintain and expand upon a joint drug program between management and players during the 1970s and 1980s was the result of coercive actions by the commissioners and constant conflict with the Major League Baseball Players Association. By examining primary and secondary sources, it is evident that the lack of an effective drug program that included strong disciplinary measures and mandatory testing for all major leaguers allowed an environment where drug abuse among players spiraled out of control. The anabolic steroid scandal in baseball that originated during the late 1980s demonstrates the collaborative failures between players and management to resolve the drug issue during the Kuhn and Ueberroth administrations.