To the surprise of just about no one, Mark McGwire admitted to using steroids during his home run record breaking season of 1998. During that year, he and Sammy Sosa had one of the greatest record-breaking battles of all time. That year McGwire ended the season with 70 home runs and Sosa with 66, both smashing Roger Maris' record of 61 home runs set back in 1961. During the 1998 season, the baseball's steroid era was in full swing and no one knew who was using and who wasn't. And the people who are saying that McGwire shouldn't be in the Hall of Fame or that he should have an asterisk next to his name in the record books or that his numbers should be stricken from history completely, need to look at the bigger picture.
During the 1990s and early 2000s, a large number of Major Leaguers were using performance enhancing substances of some kind. And who is to say that the pitcher Mark McGwire hit a home run off of wasn't using roids? It's going to be damn near impossible to get the name of every steroid user during that time period, it just won't happen. So Major League Baseball should treat the steroid era in baseball just like any other era. The steroid era is no different from the dead-ball era, it's just a period in baseball where numbers were skewed. Baseball shouldn't go on pretending that steroids didn't happen in baseball. They did and it's a shame. But there should be no asterisk or stats stricken from the record books because a certain player was found to have used steroids. It should be treated as if it were a level playing field and MLB can finally put this dark period behind itself.