The Instigator
iamadragon
Pro (for)
Winning
31 Points
The Contender
mongeese
Con (against)
Losing
12 Points

Statistics, Performance Enhancing Drugs, and Major League Baseball.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 8 votes the winner is...
iamadragon
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/21/2009 Category: Sports
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 9,106 times Debate No: 8724
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (65)
Votes (8)

 

iamadragon

Pro

Abbreviations:

MLB–Major League Baseball.
PED–Performance Enhancing Drug(s).

Definitions:

Performance Enhancing Drug(s)–substances used by athletes to improve their performances in the sports in which they engage. [1] With baseball, this usually refers mainly to anabolic steroids. [2] Thus, in this debate, "steroids" and "PEDs" will be used interchangeably. Hopefully, my opponent does not have a problem with this.

Resolution: The statistics of those Major League Baseball players who, in the late 1990s until 2004, otherwise considered the height of the "Steroid Era" by MLB fan, were known users of PEDs or who were almost certainly using PEDs, should still be held as legitimate in assessing those players' talent relative to other MLB players.

A bit of an introduction: As anyone who has any interest in MLB may know, artificial performance enhancement through PEDs has become a huge issue in the last decade or so, mainly because of the huge home run chases of Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa that are credited with bringing fans back to MLB and the subsequent revelations and suspicions that the two were using PEDs, and the incredible performances of Barry Bonds in the early 2000s and the large controversies surrounding him and steroid use.

Often, among the outrage from many fans towards those who have admitted to PED use, there are cries to invalidate statistics, under the pretense that these statistics are heavily skewed by illegal means. [3] – there are ridiculous numbers of sources for this; search some combination of "steroids," "statistics," and "strip" or "asterisk" or something and many results will pop up.

My argument: I'm here to say heck naw. The statistics of those players who we now know or are almost sure were using PEDs–Jason Giambi, Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds–are still accurate in determining how good those players were compared to the rest of the league.

1. A PED's positive effect on baseball playing skills is unknown and likely minimal.

1a. Many of the players using PEDs were actually bottom-of-the-ladder MLB players and minor leaguers. [4]

One can find the names of many of the MLB players on the Mitchell Report anywhere; here's an easy list. [5] On this list, we can see many players who were simply not very good Major League players, as evidenced most strongly by their incredibly short careers. On that list, for example, the names of players active at the time of the report, which was December 2007, is pretty low. Many of the players listed on the report as having used PEDs reportedly used them in the early 2000s but were not active by 2007. This shows that despite their PED use, they weren't good enough to stick around in the Major Leagues.

If PEDs gave a huge benefit to those who used them, why did so many who used them end up being bad MLB players anyway?

1b. The physical gain from steroids, most notably increased muscle mass, is vastly overstated in its importance to playing baseball well.

The key muscle group in baseball is the core–abs, lower back, obliques, etc. This muscle group is the most important in generating torque in both hitting and pitching, and is thus the most important in generating bat speed and arm speed, and thus the most important in hitting baseballs hard and far and throwing sick heat (a baseball fast.) I think it's dumb to cite a source for this, but I'll just pick a couple anyway. [6] (get used to seeing [6]; it has beastly information.) [7]

Another important part of baseball, actually, especially in pitching, is flexibility. [7] A flexible pitcher is able to create more external rotation of the upper pitching arm ([8]), which results in more velocity. I think it's obvious that more arm mass–bicep and tricep mass, which obviously results from steroid use–would inhibit the pitching arm's external rotation and thus lower a pitcher's speed.

The last important muscle group in hitting and pitching is the lower body. Steroids, however, have a much more pronounced effect on the upper body than the lower body, and the upper body is actually quite irrelevant in creating bat speed or arm speed. [6]

2. The increased power numbers in the Steroid Era can be attributed to many other factors.

Many people point to the huge numbers put up by Steroid Era players as evidence for PED's effect on statistics. However, there were numerous other factors contributing to a huge rise in offense. [6]

One of the most notable changes was the "juiced" ball–in 1993, the ball-manufacturing process was changed, and in a 2000 study, it was shown that baseballs in 1995 and 2000 bounced an average of 33% higher than balls from previous eras. [6] [9] (heh, 69.)

Using a "spliced" power factor, which accounts for the changes in equipment manufacturing, there is NO "power spike" that supposedly occurred during the Steroid Era, as a result of PEDs. [6] I would highly recommend looking at that site, especially the "spliced" power factor graph. It's very interesting.

3. Due to the most likely very high numbers of players who were using PEDs during the Steroid Era, any advantage gained by a player was usually cancelled out by an advantage gained by an opposing player. [10]

In essence, enough players used PEDs to create an "even playing field." If 95% of the pitchers Barry Bonds faced were also using steroids, then aren't his records still legitimate?

How do we know tons of players used steroids? Obviously, we don't have concrete numbers. We do, however, have player's accounts. [10] Some players have talked about the rampant steroid use in the late 1990s and early 2000s made possible by lenient drug policies, and some have suggested the idea of the level playing field. The allegations of "rampant steroid use" are what prompted the initial congressional investigations into MLB's PED problems. [11]

Conclusion: Steroids in baseball were not a significant enough factor in statistical evidence to influence decisions on which players were the best or worst.

The actual benefits players get from steroids is very questionable, considering the number of bad MLB players who have used PEDs without enough of a benefit to even stay in the Major Leagues, and considering the muscle groups utilized in baseball versus those that are enhanced by PED use.

The increase in offense during the Steroid Era was influenced by other factors, most notably the "ball juicing" of 1993. When adjusting for these power factors that were unrelated to playing ability, there is no apparent jump in offense during the steroid era, again calling into question the effect of steroids in increasing performance.

Finally, regardless of the magnitude of a PED's benefit on player performance, any benefit was cancelled or balanced by someone else's benefit. Because most players were using PEDs, their statistics, when compared to each other's, are unchanged. The widespread use of PEDs created a level playing field for MLB players.

I'd like to thank in advance whoever takes this argument, and I eagerly await his or her arguments.

[1]http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2]http://en.wikipedia.org...
[3]http://bleacherreport.com...
[4]http://thesteroidera.blogspot.com...
[5]http://en.wikipedia.org...
[6]http://steroids-and-baseball.com...
[7]http://baseballtips.com...
[8]http://www.jssm.org...
[9]http://steroids-and-baseball.com...
[10]http://38pitches.weei.com...
[11]http://www.cbc.ca... (check the side bar, towards the bottom.)
mongeese

Con

Thank you, iamadragon, for starting this debate.

"1. A PED's positive effect on baseball playing skills is unknown and likely minimal."
If the effects really were minimal, then players wouldn't be using them.
Furthermore, the effects are known [1]:
"Reports indicate that use of anabolic steroids produces increases in lean muscle mass, strength, and ability to train longer and harder."
An increase in strength and muscle mass helps in just about any sport, and training longer and harder gives a definite boost.

"1a. Many of the players using PEDs were actually bottom-of-the-ladder MLB players and minor leaguers."
There's a simple answer here. The poor players decided that they would use PEDs to give themselves an advantage. Plus, the side effects of steroids may lead people to stop using them, which would lead to a decrease in performance, which would put them out of the major leagues.

"If PEDs gave a huge benefit to those who used them, why did so many who used them end up being bad MLB players anyway?"
1. They were bad, which made them use PEDs.
2. They eventually quit, and therefore could not stay in the MLB.

"1b. The physical gain from steroids, most notably increased muscle mass, is vastly overstated in its importance to playing baseball well."
Increased muscle mass helps increase the strength of the core-abs, which would immediately lead to better performance in baseball.
Obviously, a pitcher would want to stay away from steroids, but a batter would use them.

"2. The increased power numbers in the Steroid Era can be attributed to many other factors."
Yes, but they can also be attributed to steroids.
The PF thing is interesting, but it does not account for any increase at all in pitching strength.

"3. Due to the most likely very high numbers of players who were using PEDs during the Steroid Era, any advantage gained by a player was usually cancelled out by an advantage gained by an opposing player."
Great. Let's just let everybody use steroids. That way, we can have every single MLB player suffer the side effects of steroids [2], which many players would rather not do.
"'..[steroids] they are dangerous drugs, and when used inappropriately, they can cause a host of severe, long-lasting, and often irreversible negative health consequences. These drugs can stunt the height of growing adolescents, masculinize women, and alter sex characteristics of men. Anabolic steroids can lead to premature heart attacks, strokes, liver tumors, kidney failure and serious psychiatric problems. In addition, because steroids are often injected, users risk contracting or transmitting HIV or hepatitis..'"
According to a source that seems to be biased towards PRO [3], there is always a risk of side effects with PEDs. Why not avoid having to take such a risk? Plus, most players don't use steroids. This puts them at a disadvantage against the steroid-abusing players. Should we reward those who break the rules?

"Conclusion: Steroids in baseball were not a significant enough factor in statistical evidence to influence decisions on which players were the best or worst."
1. When the players started to take steroids, they did so because they believed that it would give them greater statistics, more victories, and an overall higher salary in baseball. (Given)
2. These players believed that steroids in baseball were a significant enough factor in statistical evidence to influence decisions on which players were the best or worst. (Re-wording of 1)
A. First, let's look at the path in which we do nothing about it, and the PEDs do nothing.
3a. These players were wrong in their beliefs.
4a. Life continues, as normal.
THE FINAL RESULT: The PED users are wasting their money.
B. Now, if we crack down on them by declaring their statistics to be invalid, and the PEDs do nothing.
3b. These players were wrong in their beliefs.
4b. Nobody ever realizes that the PEDs do nothing.
THE FINAL RESULT: The PED users are wasting their money, and getting punished for something that they believe to be true.
C. If we let them slide and the PEDs actually do something...
3c. These players were right in their beliefs.
4c. They have an advantage over every player that chooses to abide by the rules.
THE FINAL RESULT: The PED users are making more money, and becoming more famous, illegally.
D. This is if we crack down on them, and they're guilty.
3d. These players were right in their beliefs.
4d. The players have incentive not to use PEDs.
THE FINAL RESULT: The PED users have their statistics thrown out for illegal actions that falsified their actions, making the statistics fairer.

So, basically, they think that the PEDs have a significant effect on their stats. Well, let's give them the benefit of the doubt. Let's punish them for what they believe to be true. They took that risk when they took the PEDs. It's really only fair.

"Finally, regardless of the magnitude of a PED's benefit on player performance, any benefit was cancelled or balanced by someone else's benefit. Because most players were using PEDs, their statistics, when compared to each other's, are unchanged. The widespread use of PEDs created a level playing field for MLB players."
This means that anybody who didn't use PEDs ends up looking worse. Do you really think that it's fair to reward the criminals, and make the people who played by the rules look like wimps? A "level playing field" in which the cheaters always win isn't a level playing field at all.

1. http://www.drugfree.org...
2. http://en.wikipedia.org...
3. http://steroids-and-baseball.com...
4. http://www.steroid.com...
Debate Round No. 1
iamadragon

Pro

"If the effects really were minimal, then players wouldn't be using them."

Non-sequitur. This conclusion does not follow. Many players will use whatever they BELIEVE to help, even if it is minimal. In a cutthroat world such as professional sports, athletes will be doing whatever they can to gain any sort of edge.

"Furthermore, the effects are known [1]:"

You just showed me the effects of using steroids. We are arguing the effect of using steroids on baseball playing ability. I have questioned how much this muscle mass and strength helps baseball players, specifically.

"There's a simple answer here. The poor players decided that they would use PEDs to give themselves an advantage. Plus, the side effects of steroids may lead people to stop using them, which would lead to a decrease in performance, which would put them out of the major leagues."

Uh... aren't you making my point? If the side effects of steroids eventually resulted in a decrease in performance, then steroids could have actually resulted in a decrease in performance, which means that those statistics should NOT be thrown out due to supposedly being artificially inflated.

"1. They were bad, which made them use PEDs.
2. They eventually quit, and therefore could not stay in the [sic] MLB."

So they barely got better. That's my point.

"Increased muscle mass helps increase the strength of the core-abs, which would immediately lead to better performance in baseball."

No–the increased muscle mass is largely located in the "thorax, neck, shoulders and upper arm." [1]

"Obviously, a pitcher would want to stay away from steroids, but a batter would use them."

I provided an extra argument to show why pitchers specifically shouldn't use steroids–however, this is unrelated to whether or not a batter should use them, and you have not provided any extra argument here why batters should use them. Just pointing that out.

"Yes, but they can also be attributed to steroids."

You have not shown why.

"The PF thing is interesting, but it does not account for any increase at all in pitching strength."

I don't know what you're trying to say here. Accounting for the ball change, offense was level–therefore, PED benefit was minimal.

The only argument you could be trying to make that seems relevant would be to say that since it doesn't account for pitching strength, if the trend is level, then the pitching strength was balanced would be balanced by the hitting strength. To this, I would say that you have not shown evidence of any supposed increase, and even if there were an increase, it would support my balanced playing field argument.

"Great. Let's just let everybody use steroids. That way, we can have every single MLB player suffer the side effects of steroids [2], which many players would rather not do."

Straw man. This is completely irrelevant. We are arguing about the validity of statistics.

"According to a source that seems to be biased towards PRO [3], there is always a risk of side effects with PEDs. Why not avoid having to take such a risk? Plus, most players don't use steroids. This puts them at a disadvantage against the steroid-abusing players."

If by biased, you mean it agrees with me, then yeah. I don't see why that's important though, especially when the things I cite are based in fact.

You have not at all qualified the claim that "most players don't use steroids." You have not shown why that puts them at a disadvantage–in fact, you seem to have argued that it would put them at an advantage, due to the numerous side effects.

"2. These players believed that steroids in baseball were a significant enough factor in statistical evidence to influence decisions on which players were the best or worst. (Re-wording of 1)"

This is not a rewording. You are operating under the assumption that players who used steroids expected massive gain, when it is clear that many athletes would do anything to gain any sort of edge, no matter how small.

"So, basically, they think that the PEDs have a significant effect on their stats. Well, let's give them the benefit of the doubt. Let's punish them for what they believe to be true. They took that risk when they took the PEDs. It's really only fair."

No, they do not necessarily expect a significant effect. You have not shown that.

Your benefit of the doubt argument is unreasonable. Statistics are meant to accurately show who played well and who did not. We who use statistics for this purpose are not concerned with the morality of throwing out certain stats just to punish players, because that distorts the truth, that distorts what actually happened.

"A "level playing field" in which the cheaters always win isn't a level playing field at all."

PED users don't always win because basically everyone's a PED user. That's the point.

In conclusion: My opponent has not really provided evidence for why a PED user would necessarily benefit in terms of his baseball skills. Many of his arguments seem to prove my point, especially the ones about the negative effects of steroids–in these, he seems to show that the statistics of PED users were adversely affected, which would make it absolutely absurd to throw them out due to artificial inflation. Some of his other arguments don't really seem to make much sense, and hopefully he'll expand on them in the next round. Overall, however, my opponent does not seem to have refuted any of my arguments, relying mainly on non-sequiturs or straw men. I eagerly await my opponent's response.

Vote PRO.

[1]http://en.wikipedia.org... (the part I'm citing cites source 25)
mongeese

Con

"Many players will use whatever they BELIEVE to help, even if it is minimal."
Well, at least we acknowledge that the effects exist.

"I have questioned how much this muscle mass and strength helps baseball players, specifically."
It allows them to have longer workouts with less required effort. This in turn leads to an increase in the strength of any muscle in the human body. A baseball player who uses steroids allows himself to attain physical greatness more easily than a moral player.

"If the side effects of steroids eventually resulted in a decrease in performance..."
The side effects aren't impacting their performance. The side effects just impact the rest of their life. Steroids lead to a better MLB career, but it makes the rest of life worse. Therefore, it still is an increase in performance, but players eventually decide that it isn't worth it, so they quit steroids, and therefore quit baseball.

"So they barely got better. That's my point."
No, they got better. But it was at an expense that they weren't willing to continue to pay.

"No–the increased muscle mass is largely located in the 'thorax, neck, shoulders and upper arm.'"
"Largely"? That means that increased muscle mass is also located elsewhere, such as the core-abs.

"...you have not provided any extra argument here why batters should use them."
They can use them to strengthen their core-abs, and they can use them to have easier workouts.

"You have not shown why."
Clarification above.

"I don't know what you're trying to say here...."
I'm restating your "level playing field" hypothesis.

"To this, I would say that you have not shown evidence of any supposed increase, and even if there were an increase, it would support my balanced playing field argument."
Any increase wouldn't appear because of the balanced playing field argument. However, I can attack your balanced playing field argument from a different, moral standpoint.

"Straw man. This is completely irrelevant. We are arguing about the validity of statistics."
Letting everybody become famous for illegal statistics makes more people want to use PEDs, which makes the people who originally chose not to use PEDs have to use PEDs in order to keep up, which in turn gives them undesired side effects [1].
"If we condone some players taking steroids, that puts pressure on other players to do the same if they want to be competitive. No one should have to risk his health in that way to play in MLB."

"You have not shown why that puts them at a disadvantage–in fact, you seem to have argued that it would put them at an advantage, due to the numerous side effects."
Again, the side effects do not affect performance. They affect the rest of the player's life. And even if most players use PEDs, we should just throw them out, rather than force the only remaining moral people to turn to the dark side.

"This is not a rewording. You are operating under the assumption that players who used steroids expected massive gain, when it is clear that many athletes would do anything to gain any sort of edge, no matter how small."
They were expecting a significant gain, which doesn't imply a massive gain.

"No, they do not necessarily expect a significant effect. You have not shown that."
Well, that's the only reason they'd take the PEDs.

"Statistics are meant to accurately show who played well and who did not. We who use statistics for this purpose are not concerned with the morality of throwing out certain stats just to punish players, because that distorts the truth, that distorts what actually happened."
However, if a player broke the rules to attain such statistics, then should they really be glorified for it? If you know that a student cheated, should you grade his test as normal, or should you throw it out and give him a zero? They are illegitimate, just as the student's test was illegitimate.
Here's an argument against putting PED-using players in the Hall of Fame, which can be extended to allowing their statistics to be considered legitimate [2]:
"It is because if they were that good, they would not have had to cheat and if they could have made it into the Hall of Fame without cheating, then they really blew it, but to congratulate these players for cheating is preposterous."

"PED users don't always win because basically everyone's a PED user. That's the point."
You assume this at the expense of the few MLB players out there who don't use PEDs, who continue to keep up what little integrity there is left in the once-great game of baseball. Harsh.

"My opponent has not really provided evidence for why a PED user would necessarily benefit in terms of his baseball skills."
It increases general muscle strength and allows for easier workouts.

"Many of his arguments seem to prove my point, especially the ones about the negative effects of steroids–in these, he seems to show that the statistics of PED users were adversely affected, which would make it absolutely absurd to throw them out due to artificial inflation."
He thinks that the side effects affected their performance. However, that's the only part where the steroids had a positive effect.

"Some of his other arguments don't really seem to make much sense, and hopefully he'll expand on them in the next round."
What, the benefit of the doubt? Clarifications above.

Because the word "legitimate" appears in the resolution, I think that it's about time we gave it a definition [3]:
Legitimate - conforming to recognized principles or accepted rules and standards

Well, this makes it a no-brainer. The PED users did not conform to the accepted anti-PED rules. Thus, they were illegitimate, and their statistics are therefore illegitimate. The resolution is negated.

With all of that aside, I eagerly await my opponent's response, as well. Vote CON.

1. http://www.sports-central.org...
2. http://bleacherreport.com...
Debate Round No. 2
iamadragon

Pro

"Well, at least we acknowledge that the effects exist."

My statement did not imply that.

"It allows them to have longer workouts with less required effort. This in turn leads to an increase in the strength of any muscle in the human body. A baseball player who uses steroids allows himself to attain physical greatness more easily than a moral player."

How much longer? How much effort? The added stamina part of PEDs is minor, especially compared to the muscle mass benefits. How does the added stamina work? Does it add stamina when working the muscle groups important to baseball? If so, please provide a source saying that.

"The side effects aren't impacting their performance... therefore quit baseball."

How do they impact life after baseball, but not impact life during baseball? You pointed out the debilitating effects of steroids. You cannot choose to apply them to one argument but not to another by saying that they only exist after baseball. All of the sources I have cited that mention the harmful side effects of steroids do not differentiate between during a player's career and after the career, because the side effects obviously come during the steroid use–i.e., during the player's career.

"No, they got better. But it was at an expense that they weren't willing to continue to pay."

See above. If it was at an expense they couldn't pay, then steroids ultimately didn't help them.

""Largely"? That means that increased muscle mass is also located elsewhere, such as the core-abs."

This, to me, seems like nit-picking. If 99% of the increase is in the not-important-to-baseball upper body, and 1% of the increase is elsewhere, then it's still largely in the upper body. The benefit to muscles important in baseball is insignificant.

Second, even if it is located elsewhere, you cannot definitively single out the core as the elsewhere. There are still many other muscle groups besides those I named which aren't important to baseball which could be benefitted by PEDs, just less so than the upper body.

"Any increase wouldn't appear because of the balanced playing field argument."

So you agree. Good for me.

"However, I can attack your balanced playing field argument from a different, moral standpoint."

No, you cannot. Morals are irrelevant in the validity of the statistics when used to compare player performances.

"Letting everybody become famous for illegal statistics makes more people want to use PEDs, which makes the people who originally chose not to use PEDs have to use PEDs in order to keep up, which in turn gives them undesired side effects [1]."

Sorry, but this is irrelevant. Read the resolution, specifically, "should still be held as legitimate in assessing those players' talent relative to other MLB players." We are only discussing the merit of the statistics in assessing performance. Risking health and morality don't pertain to this debate, making all of your arguments about them straw men.

"Again, the side effects do not affect performance. They affect the rest of the player's life."

Like I said, this is a ridiculous distinction.

"And even if most players use PEDs, we should just throw them out, rather than force the only remaining moral people to turn to the dark side."

Yep, irrelevant to the statistics.

"They were expecting a significant gain, which doesn't imply a massive gain."

What? Significant is basically the same thing as massive. This is just semantics.

"Well, that's the only reason they'd take the PEDs."

No, it's not, and you have not provided any logical explanation why. I said that in such a high level of competition, athletes will do anything to gain any edge, no matter how small. I think this is quite logical. Players have millions of dollars at stake, especially when they are on the cusp of playing in the minor leagues and playing in the Major Leagues.

"However, if a player broke the rules to attain such statistics, then should they really be glorified for it? If you know that a student cheated, should you grade his test as normal, or should you throw it out and give him a zero? They are illegitimate, just as the student's test was illegitimate."

Glorification is irrelevant to the debate. Your analogy basically ignores all of my arguments. Analogies for my arguments would say that all of the students cheated, and that the student's cheating basically didn't help them, and using your own arguments about the negative effects of steroids, that the student's cheating inadequately prepared him for the types of questions on the tests, and thus actually inhibited his performance.

"Here's an argument against putting PED-using players in the Hall of Fame..."

There's no reason for that moral logic to be extended to the legitimacy of statistics. The argument itself is foolish–there are various magnitudes of "good." A player can be extremely good, HOF caliber, and still wish to get better. Heck, I think almost all athletes want that. It's basically the definition of athletic drive.

"You assume this at the expense of the few MLB players out there who don't use PEDs, who continue to keep up what little integrity there is left in the once-great game of baseball. Harsh."

Wow, appeal to emotion. These few MLB players are, at this point, outliers. We are only discussing statistics.

"It increases general muscle strength and allows for easier workouts."

General muscle strength doesn't necessarily help baseball. You haven't even shown that it's general muscle strength. The benefit is concentrated in the upper body. I addressed the workout argument earlier.

"He thinks that the side effects affected their performance. However, that's the only part where the steroids had a positive effect."

By "he," I meant you. The rest of your statement doesn't make any sense to me, unless you're basically just outright saying that you only think a PED's positive effects affected performance, which seems to clearly show me and the audience that you're just selectively applying your arguments.

"What, the benefit of the doubt? Clarifications above."

Yep. Thanks. Refutations and straw man labels above.

"Because the word "legitimate" appears in the resolution, I think that it's about time we gave it a definition [3]:
Legitimate - conforming to recognized principles or accepted rules and standards"

In the world of statistics, this would mean that the statistics are not skewed by factors outside of the player's own natural ability.

Also, you did not provide a source for this definition.

"Well, this makes it a no-brainer... The resolution is negated."

You're completely, completely flying over the point of the debate. The whole reason I started this was to argue that even though they broke the rules, their statistics were legitimate. You're simply saying that the fact that they broke the rules makes their statistics legitimate. You can't just say that. You're supposed to argue that. You have not negated the resolution.

Conclusion: Most of my opponent's argument revolve around the morality of using steroids, and morality of retaining these statistics. These arguments are all straw men. Whether or not it is moral to keep the records of those who broke the rules is completely irrelevant to whether or not the records accurately show the players' performances. The only other relevant argument my opponent gave regarded workouts, which I refuted earlier. My opponent's other argument was basically just stating that my resolution was wrong, and unfortunately, he did not support this argument at all, instead focusing on his straw men. Finally, my opponent seemed to actually agree with my level playing field argument, and often supported me when he mentioned the negative effects of steroids, and then tried to selectively apply his arguments about the negative effects of steroids.

To conclude the conclusion, I refuted all of my opponents relevant arguments, and the re
mongeese

Con

I apologize. I forgot to source my definition. Here it is:
3. http://www.merriam-webster.com...

Now, for starters, I'd like to point out that my opponent has never actually affirmed the resolution. His entire conclusion was about how he refuted my arguments, which would only stop the negation of the resolution. The burden of proof is on him, as PRO and the Instigator. Because he doesn't address any affirmation in his conclusion, he can't affirm the resolution. Therefore, you can't vote PRO, but you can vote CON, as I'm about to show you.

"My statement did not imply that."
You said that it would help minimally. That implies help.

"How much longer? How much effort?..."
I sourced this in Round 1:
"Reports indicate that use of anabolic steroids produces increases in lean muscle mass, strength, and ability to train longer and harder."
It seems that any training would be eased, including baseball training and sit-ups, which strengthen the core-abs.

"How do they impact life after baseball..."
No, not life after baseball. Life during their baseball career, but off of the field. For example, liver tumors that are caused by steroids don't appear until a while after the steroids were taken, at which point the player can no longer play baseball. Additionally, baldness and infertility don't affect one's baseball-playing skills, but they do affect one's social life. So, the baseball players on PEDs decide that it isn't worth it after using them for a while.

"If it was at an expense they couldn't pay..."
It helped them for a short time, but then they quit steroids and baseball. You don't see any drop in performance until then.

"This, to me, seems like nit-picking..."
You're the one who is claiming that it doesn't help the core-abs. The burden of proof is on you. It has an effect on core-abs. You're the one who's making up statistics.

"So you agree..."
However, I don't want to see everybody using PEDs, because then it forces everybody to suffer the side-effects.

"No, you cannot..."
You argue that everybody could use PEDs to balance everything out. I argue that forcing people to take PEDs to play in MLB is immoral.

"Sorry, but this is irrelevant..."
Calling their statistics illegitimate discourages usage of PEDs, which is largely a good thing.

"Like I said, this is a ridiculous distinction."
That is because you misunderstood.

"Yep, irrelevant to the statistics."
If something is immoral, it should not be done.

"Significant is basically the same thing as massive..."
Significant [1] - having or likely to have influence or effect
That isn't even close to meaning "massive."

"I said that in such a high level of competition, athletes will do anything to gain any edge, no matter how small..."
Exactly. They're using PEDs to get a significant edge, which is why the statistics become flawed.

"Glorification is irrelevant to the debate..."
You didn't answer the question. Plus, if you think that all of the students are cheating, do you let them continue, or do you crack down on them and teach them discipline? You teach them discipline. That's the only way to help discourage cheating.

"There's no reason for that moral logic to be extended to the legitimacy of statistics..."
I always thought that the athletic drive involved sportsmanship and playing by the rules.

"Wow, appeal to emotion. These few MLB players are, at this point, outliers..."
That's nice. Kill the outliers. Squash them, because they're doing the right thing. Somehow, that doesn't make sense.

"General muscle strength doesn't necessarily help baseball. You haven't even shown that it's general muscle strength..."
You haven't shown that it isn't. Plus, you didn't address the workout argument. You asked more questions.

"The rest of your statement doesn't make any sense to me, unless you're basically just outright saying that you only think a PED's positive effects affected performance..."
That's the only factor of life in which they have a positive impact. Do you think using steroids helps you when you go to the doctor? When you're trying to be a responsible parent? 'Roid rage really doesn't help there, in addition to the infertility and all.

"Yep. Thanks. Refutations and straw man labels above."
Refutations and straw man labels removed.

"In the world of statistics, this would mean that the statistics are not skewed by factors outside of the player's own natural ability."
Well, PEDs are far from a player's natural ability, given that they enhance perfornamce beyond normal [2]. Thus, if a player uses PEDs, then his statistics are skewed, and therefore illegitimate.

"The whole reason I started this was to argue that even though they broke the rules, their statistics were legitimate."
That's kind of hard to do, given that to be legitimate, they have to have not broken the rules in the first place.

"You're simply saying that the fact that they broke the rules makes their statistics legitimate. You can't just say that. You're supposed to argue that. You have not negated the resolution."
Alright then, I will.

Again, the resolution:
"The statistics of those Major League Baseball players who... were known users of PEDs or who were almost certainly using PEDs, should still be held as legitimate..."
And again, with the definition of "legitimate" [3]:
"The statistics of those Major League Baseball players who... were known users of PEDs or who were almost certainly using PEDs, should still be held as [conforming to accepted rules]..."
And now, given that PEDs are illegal in Major League Baseball [4]:
"The statistics of those Major League Baseball players who... were known [breakers of the rules], should still be held as [conforming to accepted rules]..."

This is obviously contradictory. The statistics of players who broke the rules should he held as if they didn't break the rules. The resolution contradicts with itself [5]. Thus, it is negated.

"You have not negated the resolution."
Now I have.
Happy now?

My opponent's conclusion seems to ignore the most important argument about legitimacy making the resolution impossible to affirm. It only deals with rebuttals of other arguments.

In conclusion, because the use of the word "legitimate" in the resolution, the resolution becomes self-contradictory, and therefore cannot be affirmed. The resolution is negated. Vote CON.

1. http://www.merriam-webster.com...
2. http://en.wikipedia.org...
3. http://www.merriam-webster.com...
4. http://en.wikipedia.org...
5. http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 3
65 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 61 through 65 records.
Posted by mongeese 5 years ago
mongeese
"Resolution: The statistics of those Major League Baseball players who, in the late 1990s until 2004, otherwise considered the height of the "Steroid Era" by MLB fan, [were known users of PEDs,] should still be held as legitimate in assessing those players' talent relative to other MLB players."
Posted by mongeese 5 years ago
mongeese
I just want to let you know, your resolution doesn't make complete sense. I think that you're missing a phrase in there somewhere.
Posted by Danielle 5 years ago
Danielle
Not because I disagree with the instigator, but just for fun. Heh.
Posted by Danielle 5 years ago
Danielle
I may take this...
Posted by patsox834 5 years ago
patsox834
CBC used as a reference? I like it.
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by tribefan011 5 years ago
tribefan011
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Vote Placed by patsox834 5 years ago
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Vote Placed by untitled_entity 5 years ago
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Vote Placed by sherlockmethod 5 years ago
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Vote Placed by ToastOfDestiny 5 years ago
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Vote Placed by mongoose 5 years ago
mongoose
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Vote Placed by mongeese 5 years ago
mongeese
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Vote Placed by Xer 5 years ago
Xer
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