David Ortiz

You don’t care about steroids, right?

Drip, drip, drip … two more names from the infamous 2003 positive drug-test list — Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz. Given Ramirez’s suspension this year, his appearance in The New York Times report can’t be too much of a surprise. Ortiz, on the other hand, had said in February that players testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs should get a one-year ban from baseball.

But I mention today’s report not to open a debate on whether the Red Sox’s 2004 world championship was tainted, but rather to point out something you hear quite a bit whenever a new steroid-related report hits. The argument, particularly on sports radio, is how the media are obsessed with steroids in baseball while hardly any fans care. The media continue to report on steroids only because, the argument goes, it attracts attention and thus sells papers, adds to the broadcast audience or drives up page views.

What I don’t quite understand about that take is how, on one hand, you can say nobody cares about steroids, then, on the other, say the media report about performance-enhancing drugs only to draw more attention. If nobody cares, then how can the media be benefiting by running stories about the issue?

See, this is yet another reason why I could never be any good on radio.