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Report accuses Rodriguez of doping in recent seasons

Updated: 2013-01-31 07:44
By Associated Press in New York (China Daily)

Report accuses Rodriguez of doping in recent seasons

Major League Baseball said it was "extremely disappointed" about a newspaper report on Tuesday that claims records from an anti-aging clinic in the Miami area link Alex Rodriguez (above) and others to the purchase of performance-enhancing drugs. Rodriguez admitted four years ago to PED use from 2001 to 2003, though he was never punished.  [Photo/Agencies]

If allegations are true, Yankees might seek to void star's contract

Alex Rodriguez was ensnared in a doping investigation once again on Tuesday when an alternative weekly newspaper reported baseball's highest-paid star was among a half-dozen players listed in records of a Florida clinic the paper said sold performance-enhancing drugs.

The Miami New Times said the three-time AL MVP bought human growth hormone and other performance-enhancing substances during 2009-12 from Biogenesis of America LLC, a now-closed anti-aging clinic in Coral Gables, Fla, near Rodriguez's offseason home.

The new public relations firm for the New York Yankees third baseman issued a statement denying the allegations.

ESPN.com, though, reported the Yankees will look into voiding Rodriguez's contract if MLB ends up punishing him for the allegations, an action that would be unprecented.

The New Times said it obtained records detailing purchases by Rodriguez, 2012 All-Star Game MVP Melky Cabrera, 2005 AL Cy Young Award winner Bartolo Colon and 2011 AL Championship Series MVP Nelson Cruz of Texas.

Cabrera left San Francisco after the season to sign with Toronto, while Oakland re-signed Colon.

Other players the newspaper said appeared in the records include Washington pitcher Gio Gonzalez, who finished third in last year's NL Cy Young Award voting, and San Diego catcher Yasmani Grandal.

Biogenesis, which the New Times said was run by Anthony Bosch, was located in a beige, nondescript office park. The former clinic is no longer listed as a business in its directory,

"There was a flier put out by the building management a couple weeks ago. It was put on all the doors and windows of all the offices," said Brad Nickel, who works in a group cruise planning company on the floor above where the clinic was located. "It just said this guy's not really a doctor, he doesn't belong here, he's no longer allowed here, call the police or the building management if you see him."

Report accuses Rodriguez of doping in recent seasons

David Sierra, who works in his aunt's real estate office in the same building, kept a picture of the flier on his iPhone. He recognized the doctor in the picture from passing him in the hallway.

Sierra said while he never recognized any of the clients at the clinic, "there were always really nice cars in front - I'm not talking just Mercedes. Range Rovers, Bentleys".

The New Times posted copies of what it said were Bosch's handwritten records, obtained through a former Biogenesis employee it did not identify.

Bosch's lawyer, Susy Ribero-Ayala, said in a statement the New Times report "is filled with inaccuracies, innuendo and misstatements of fact".

"Mr Bosch vehemently denies the assertions that MLB players such as Alex Rodriguez and Gio Gonzalez were treated by or associated with him," she said.

Rodriguez appears 16 times in the documents New Times received, the paper said, either as "Alex Rodriguez", "Alex Rod" or the nickname "Cacique", a pre-Columbian Caribbean chief.

Rodriguez admitted four years ago he used PEDs from 2001 to 2003. Cabrera, Colon and Grandal were suspended for 50 games each last year by MLB following tests for elevated testosterone. Responding to the testosterone use, MLB and the players' union said on Jan 10 they were authorizing the World Anti-Doping Agency laboratory outside Montreal to store each major leaguer's baseline testosterone/epitestosterone (T/E) ratio in order to detect abnormalities.

"We are always extremely disappointed to learn of potential links between players and the use of performance-enhancing substances," MLB said in a statement. "Only law enforcement officials have the capacity to reach those outside the game who are involved in the distribution of illegal performance-enhancing drugs ... We are in the midst of an active investigation and are gathering and reviewing information."

A baseball official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make public statements, said on Monday that MLB did not have any documentation regarding the allegations. If MLB does obtain evidence, the players could be subject to discipline.

 

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