If you lived in St. Louis during the late 1990s, it is difficult to capture the hysteria that surrounded Mark McGwire after his trade from the Oakland Athletics at the 1997 trade deadline. In just 51 games as a Cardinal that year, McGwire managed to hit 24 home runs, a precursor to the home run record he would set the following year at 70 and the 65 to come the year after.
I was too young at the time to appreciate the ominous impending cloud of the steroid and performance-enhancing drug scandal, though my sense of the era was that hometown fans overlooked any speculation about steroid use concerning the players on their team but were quick to accuse the sluggers on rival teams.
And back then, no one could change a game faster than McGwire. I have a strong memory of people asking the question “Did McGwire hit a … Read the rest of this article!