Latest Doping Scandal May Spell End For Alex Rodriguez

A South Florida-based alternative weekly has linked many players to a clinic in Miami that is shown to have distributed performance enhancing drugs like human growth hormone, synthetic testosterone, and other substances banned by baseball.

The biggest name involved is Alex Rodriguez and other players named included Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Melky Cabrera, Texas Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz, and San Diego Padres catcher Yasmani Grandal. Other baseball players who appeared in the records include Washington pitcher Gio Gonzalez, who finished third in last year’s NL Cy Young Award voting, besides pro tennis player Wayne Odesnik, and budding Cuban superstar boxer Yuriorkis Gamboa along with UM baseball conditioning guru Jimmy Goins, according to the newspaper.

A disgruntled employee of a Miami-based clinic called Biogenesis gave documents to the Miami New Times that are being evaluated by the New York Yankees. The documents purported to show that A-Rod paid for testosterone cream, human growth hormone, and IGF-1, as recently as last spring. Rodriguez, in the past, said that he stopped making use of performance enhancing drugs after 2003 and issued a statement disavowing any relationship with the man in charge of the clinic, Anthony Bosch. Other players listed in the report like Washington Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez also issued denials.

A release issued by Major League Baseball disclosed that three of the players including Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Melky Cabrera who were linked to the clinic had in fact been suspended by baseball. Cabrera was signed a $18-million (U.S.) free-agent contract for two years with Toronto this winter after he was suspended for 50 games and missed out on the San Francisco Giants’ 2012 World Series run because of a failed drug test indicating elevated testosterone levels.

The name of Cabrera among the list of players supposedly serviced by Bosch and Biogenesis shocked Blue Jays fans and notes given to the New Times referring to Cabrera are dated December 21, 2011 and include a hand-written note from Bosch expressing anger at the baseball star for $9,000 Bosch says he is owed. The paper cites Bosch as complaining that he put his business and all his doctors at risk by fabricating patient charts and phony prescriptions to help him.

But the entire focus in on Alex Rodriguez and many believe this may be his BALCO scandal. With the baseball icon not liked anymore by the Yankees fans, there seems to be no respite for A-Rod as no one would care if he never returns to the game. The baseball’s highest-paid star and the three-time AL MVP refuted claims that he purchased human growth hormone and other performance-enhancing substances during 2009-12 from Biogenesis of America LLC, a now-closed anti-aging clinic in Coral Cables, Fla., near the off-season home of A-Rod while the alternative weekly newspaper 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.

Bosch’s lawyer, Susy Ribero-Ayala, said in a statement that Mr. Bosch vehemently denies the assertions that MLB players such as Alex Rodriguez and Gio Gonzalez were treated by or associated with him and the New Times report “is filled with inaccuracies, innuendo and misstatements of fact.”

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