The Effect Of Steroids On Home Runs


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A statistics study on the effect of steroids on home runs demonstrating my comprehension of statistical analysis.

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The Effect Of Steroids On Home Runs

  1. 1. The Effect of Steroids on Home RunsJohn PabustanStatistics Final ProjectDr. CruiseDecember 1, 2011La Sierra University
  2. 2. Statement of the problem: One’s livelihood is often dependent on what their employer believes their worth to be inthe workplace. Employees with higher values often get higher salaries and because of it peopleoften attempt to get an edge over their counterparts by finding some way to increase theirperformance. Things like taking energy drinks to stay alert, attending secondary school toincrease intelligence, or even taking some form of stimulant to increase performance often atleast helps a person believe their worth has increased. The question becomes how far will aperson go to receive a perceived “edge” and does this “edge” come at a price? Secondly, is the“edge” worth the risk and really does it affect a person’s performance? These questions are one’swe all deal with on a daily basis when attempting to decide whether or not to do something toincrease our own performance. A cup of coffee, for example, may make you more alert in themornings but overtime can be harmful to your health. These types of decisions have long timeeffects that we may not often see but, what if there was some product that could increase ourproductivity immensely? The product is readily available but is illegal in your profession whileat the same time not illegal in some cases to the general public. In a more confusing sense theproduct in your profession has now been made illegal by the United States Government becauseof the importance of your profession to the general public and what people perceive to be a jobthat requires “integrity”. The job has no real impact on politics, science, or even general health ofthe public yet because of the perception of the profession it leads others to demand a higher formof self-evaluation from its employees. This profession is a game, but the game is Baseball. Baseball is a game that is often called “America’s Game”. A game that many childrengrow up playing and many adults continue to romanticize about because it seems to show thefreedoms Americans have to do something unheard of in other countries. It puts ideas such ascapitalism and a blurring of color lines on to an even playing field where anyone can prove theirworth to the world. The problem has become that players now who are living the ultimate dream,now may be doing things to get an edge to stay relevant in the game. Baseball contracts, as wellas sports contracts in general, are all a perception of worth of a player. If a player can prove he isworth 8 million dollars he can command 8 million dollars. The inherent problem with baseball isit is an evaluation of players vs. other available players that can possibly do a job better thanothers or do the same job at a lesser wage. A game that started out very simply from a bat andball has now become one where different drugs known as “steroids” cloud the wholesome ideaof playing a kid’s game professionally. Baseball and Bud Selig (current Major League baseballcommissioner) often turned a blind eye to “steroids” but due to recent government mandates ithas become a hot button issue. The effect of “steroids” is often under debate but many who haveused them swear by the idea that it makes a player hit more home runs. The question thenbecomes: 2
  3. 3. Do Steroids Significantly Increase the Amount of Home Runs for professional baseballplayers?If there is a significant correlation in the study, then the ban on them would make sense or wouldcall for all steroids to be legalized to even the playing field. It also calls into place several otherideas that will be explained later in this study.Hypothesis: The rampant explosion of books and tell alls about steroid use points to several playerswho have hit incredible amounts of home runs and more importantly some admittedly usingthem to increase performance. During the 1998 season in which there was a homerun racebetween Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa it was widely known that Mark McGwire who wenton to break Roger Maris’ record of 61 home runs, was on Andro a steroid that one year laterwould be a banned substance (Hoberman 1) . Sammy Sosa who hit 66 homeruns that year wouldlater test positive for steroids in 2003 and many have called for him to admit his use in 1998. Thetell all books Game of Shadows and Juiced by Jose Canseco a former Mark McGwire teammate,exposed that several players were taking steroids from Balco a bay area steroid company or othersources. Many players deny their use of steroids although being found in both the MitchellReport (a report by Senator George J. Mitchell from Maine that looked into anabolic steroid usein baseball) and in the Balco seized documents that named several players as clients. The list ofnames includes players such as Mark McGwire, Alex Rodriguez, Jose Canseco, Gary Sheffieldand Jason Giambi who have commanded some of the biggest contracts in baseball as a result ofincredible home run production. In fact, the highest paid player in baseball today is AlexRodriguez who has admittedly taken steroids(Goldman 1 ).My hypothesis based on the success of many alleged players is that the use of steroids leadsto more home runs.In fact, this year’s current NL Most Valuable Player Ryan Braun has recently been shown tohave failed a drug test late this season and may have his MVP award revoked. (Weir 1)Definition of Terms:One of the major concepts of this study is understanding what statistically is considered a homerun.In baseball, a home run (abbreviated HR) is scored when the ball is hit in such a way that thebatter is able to reach home safely in one play without any errors being committed by thedefensive team in the process (Merriam-Webster). This would include all types of home runssuch as inside the park (where a player reaches home safely without hitting it out of the field of 3
  4. 4. play), a grand slam (a homerun with the bases loaded), and the most common homerun of hittingthe ball out of the field of play(Merriam-Webster).Any homerun listed that is scored a homerun by Major League Baseball will be taken intoaccount no matter the variety.Population and sample:Statistically the only way to create the right type of significance as well as use players whodefinitely used steroids is to sample every player who since the Mitchell Report and the two tellall books that many people cite as the basis for steroids testing (Juiced and Game of Shadows)admitted to taking steroids. These players will be sifted by excluding pitchers who are not usedto hit homeruns and will only use players who gave a definite season in which they began steroiduse. Players who have subsequently failed drug tests while not admitting to steroid use or playerswho deny steroid use will not be used as there is a chance that they have never used them evenwith several implications that they were known by steroid suppliers.The testimonies of many of the players listed come from the book Game of Shadows and areverified by the players themselves.Research Tools:-The Mitchell Report (explained above)-Official Statistics Collected by Major League Baseball-Game of Shadows by Mark Fainaru-Wada-Juiced by Jose Canseco-Verified Testimonies collected in Game of ShadowsMethod of AnalysisThe method of analysis chosen is a paired t test for dependent variables as we are studying aplayer before the use of steroids and after then comparing the results. 4
  5. 5. ProcedureAfter gathering the information from the above listed sources, a paired t test was run with theprevious season before steroid use and the admitted steroid use season. The Results are listedbelow.Results Admitted Previous Season Admitted Steroid User Before Steroids Steroid Season Ken Caminiti 26 40 Bobby Estalella 0 14 Jason Giambi 38 41 Jeremy Giambi 26 34 Armando Rios 7 10 Benito Santiago 6 16 Gary Sheffield 25 39 Jose Canseco 37 44 Shane Monahan 0 4 Wally Joyner 8 13 Ryan Jorgensen 0 2 David Segui 5 48 Jason Grimsley 6 8 Manny Ramirez 20 37 Jorge Piedra 3 6 Matt Lawton 20 39 Mike Morse 0 3 David Ortiz 20 31Hypothesis test results:μ1 - μ2 : mean of the paired difference between Admitted Steroid Season and Previous SeasonBefore SteroidsH0 : μ1 - μ2 = 0HA : μ1 - μ2 ≠ 0 Difference Sample Diff. Std. Err. DF T-Stat P-valueAdmitted Steroid Season - Previous 10.111111 2.3331778 17 4.3336225 0.0005Season Before Steroids 5
  6. 6. Conclusion:After going through the available data on this study on the use of steroids in professionalbaseball I have found my study to be statistically significant (0.0005). My p < than alpha so Ireject the null hypothesis and this means therefore, there is no greater than a five percent chancethat this is due to chance. The magnitude of the study using a paired T-test shows that there is adifference of 10 more home runs being hit if steroids are being used. The direction shows thatthose using steroids are more likely to hit more home runs than in the previous season. Theimportance of this finding is that professional baseball is determined on how valuable a teamowner finds your own particular value. Home runs often are a stat that many owners see as onewhere more compensation is due to a player in comparison to another who hits less home runs. Aplayer can command upwards of millions of dollars for as little as ten more home runs thananother player. The difference can be staggering as a player with 10 more home runs could makemillions more than a player who has hit only 10 less. Players who want to increase their worthmay see taking steroids as a difference between 100,000 dollars and 100 million dollars which isa difference that may sway one player or another to take steroids.The worth of this study is that players who are willing to endure the consequences of health andgovernmental bodies can possibly use steroids to increase their home run totals. It is to their owndiscretion but steroids seem to increase home run production. 6
  7. 7. Works CitedCanseco, Jose. Juiced: Wild Times, Rampant Roids, Smash Hits, and How Baseball Got Big. New York: It Books, 2006.Fainaru-Wada, Mark. Game of Shadows: Barry Bonds, BALCO, and the Steroids Scandal that Rocked Professional Sports. New York: Gotham, 2006.Goldman, Russell. A-Rod Alex Rodriguez Admits to Banned Substance Use: I Was Stupid, I Was Naive. 9 Feb 2009. ABC News 8 Dec 2011. <>"home run." Merriam-Webster, 2011. Web. 12 Dec 2011.Hoberman, John. Mark McGwires Little Helper: The Androstenedione Debate. 8 Dec 2011. <>Mitchell, Senator George J. Report to the Commissioner of Baseball of an Independent Investigation into the Illegal Use of Steroids and Other Performance Enhancing Substances by Players in Major League Baseball. A study prepared for The U.S. Congress. Press, 2006.Weir, Tom. Should Ryan Braun lose MVP if hes guilty of using PEDs? 12 Dec 2011 USA Today 12 Dec 2011. 7