MLB plans to implement blood testing for HGH in the minors, and the NFL wants to start drawing blood, too, and somehow this is being framed as an exciting development instead of yet more tilting and yet another windmill.
Here's what The New York Times's eager-beaver anti-drug Boy Scout Michael S. Schmidt has to say:
Major League Baseball, which had long been skeptical about a viable test for human growth hormone, now plans to implement blood testing for the substance in the minor leagues later this year, according to an official in baseball with direct knowledge of the matter.
The decision to move ahead with blood testing comes one day after a British rugby player was suspended for testing positive for H.G.H. It was the first time that an athlete had been publicly identified for testing positive for the substance and was seen as overdue proof that the blood test, which has been in limited use for six years, actually works.
Forget for a second the very real possibility that HGH no more enhances anyone's performance than the tonics sold off the back of a medicine-show wagon made anyone healthier. And forget how you would personally feel about mandatory workplace blood testing for substances that may have little to no bearing on the quality of your work. Merely consider this: Sports leagues are suddenly falling all over themselves to implement a test that has led to one suspension in six years. One. An NFL spokesman says this is "just further evidence that the testing has become reliable." No, this is just further evidence that we will never, ever stop being stupid about drugs.
Baseball Plans to Test for H.G.H. in Minors [The New York Times]
NFL proposes drug testing players for human growth hormone [Washington Post]