Padres star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. tested positive for Clostebol, an anabolic steroid. Major League Baseball suspended him for 80 games.
Tatis hasn’t played at the major league level all season. He broke his wrist, and it took a while to heal. The Padres organization expected him to rejoin the team in a few days. That won’t happen now. Tatis will miss the remaining 48 regular-season games this season. If the Padres make the playoffs, those games will count towards his 80 game suspension. If the Padres do not make the playoffs, Tatis will miss the first 32 games of the 2023 season.
My takeaway from this story is I don’t know as much about anabolic steroids as I thought I did.
Once upon a time, I was in the U.S. Air Force
Way back in the late 80s I was in the U.S. Air Force and stationed at Andersen Air Force Base on the island of Guam. During my time there, I knew of two guys who practically lived in the base gym. They were massively huge guys. The rumor on base was that they were using steroids.
Normally, when you lift, you concentrate every day on a specific body part. In my personal experience with lifting weights, I broken things down into the groups. One day I’d concentrate on the chest and back. The next day, I’d concentrate on legs. The day after that, I’d concentrate on arms. I would then take every fourth day off.
The reason you try to spread working specific body parts out is to give your muscles time to heal from the workouts you subjected them to. This time to heal is called recovery time.
When you use anabolic steroids, you don’t require as much recovery time. Anabolic steroids allow you to lift a lot of weight more frequently. The two guys I mentioned earlier? It didn’t look like they needed recovery time. It looked like they were lifting heavy every single day, even working the same body parts every day.
It was like they didn’t even know what recovery time was.
When the Air Force added anabolic steroids to the recreational drugs it tested us for, those two meat heads got chosen to report for a “random” drug test. To the surprise of no one, they tested positive for anabolic steroids.
I’ve always associated anabolic steroid use with the ability to aggressively lift a lot of weight in a short amount of time, with little to no recovery time.
Now I’m not sure that’s correct.
Fernando Tatis Jr. doesn’t look like he abuses anabolic steroids
Fernando Tatis Jr. is not a big guy. I wouldn’t describe him as overly muscular. Although he looks fit, he doesn’t look huge. He doesn’t strike me as a guy who goes to the gym and works out for five hours a day.
Tatis had a broken wrist for most of the season. How can anyone lift weights with a broken wrist?
With Tatis testing positive for Clostebol, I wonder if anabolic steroids might give you an advantage other than a decrease in recovery time. Can you take anabolic steroids, not work out, and still add muscle mass? Could Tatis have taken Clostebol because he mistakenly believed it would make him stronger without lifting weights?
I don’t know the answers to these questions. I’m just a simple caveman.