Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig said Tuesday that he hopes the game will do even more to fight doping by the time spring training starts next month.
Selig spoke at a congressional hearing about the recent Mitchell report on performance-enhancing drugs in baseball. The report's author, former Sen. George Mitchell, also testified — as did Selig's longtime nemesis, player's union head Donald Fehr.
But the tone at the hearing was far less adversarial than in the past, with House oversight committee chairman Henry Waxman thanking Selig and Fehr for their "leadership." Waxman was one of the most vocal critics in March 2005, when lawmakers dressed-down Selig and Fehr for letting steroid use fester in the major leagues, and for taking too long to enforce rules against doping.
After the 2005 cattle-prodding by Congress, Selig and Fehr opened their collective bargaining agreement twice to tighten the sport's anti-doping program. Now it's considered the toughest program of all the major sport leagues in the country.
At Tuesday's hearing, Selig said he has already put in place some of the recommendations for further improvements included in the Mitchell report. Those include creating a drug investigative unit and eliminating advance notice of drug-testing players at the ballparks.