Originally created 12/15/04

Majority of fans support ban



NEW YORK - A majority of fans say players who test positive for steroids or other performance-enhancing drugs should be banned from baseball and think such players should be barred from the Hall of Fame, a poll found.

But there is strong opposition among baseball fans to erasing records held by players who fail drug tests, according to the nationwide poll released Tuesday by Quinnipiac University in Connecticut.

The poll was taken Dec. 7-12, a few days after the San Francisco Chronicle published leaked grand jury testimony in which Yankees slugger Jason Giambi admitted long-term steroid use and seven-time MVP and Giants slugger Barry Bonds said he unknowingly took substances that prosecutors have identified as steroids.

Sixty-one percent of the 865 baseball fans polled said players who test positive should be banned from the game, while 33 percent oppose such a move. The breakdown was fairly consistent across gender - 60 percent of men and 64 percent of women supported such sanctions.

Fifty-two percent of those questioned said major leaguers who test positive for steroids or other drugs should be banned from the Hall of Fame, while 42 percent said there should be no such ban.

On the question of expunging the records of players who fail drug tests, 57 percent were opposed and 36 percent supported such a move.

The poll also found 93 percent of fans believe the use of steroids or other performance-enhancing drugs by baseball players is a problem, including 65 percent who call it "a major problem."

file/associated press