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Tuesday 06, Aug 2013

  Alex Rodriguez Suspended Through 2014

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Alex Rodriguez Suspended Through 2014

New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez will be suspended through the 2014 season after he was found involved in baseball’s latest scandal of performance enhancing drugs. However, Rodriguez will be allowed to play as he pursues an appeal of the decision.

Rodriguez, who has missed this entire season after a hip surgery, is scheduled to make his 2013 debut with the Yankees scheduled to play the White Sox. His rehabilitation efforts have been shrouded by the investigation of Major League Baseball into Biogenesis, a now-defunct South Florida anti-aging clinic. Yankees Manager Joe Girardi said he is keen to play Rodriguez.

Major League Baseball is all set to suspend as many as a dozen players, including outfielder Nelson Cruz of Texas and Detroit shortstop Jhonny Peralta, whose names figured in documents obtained from Biogenesis and its owner, Tony Bosch. The suspensions are expected to be of 50 games each, the number agreed upon for first-time offenders in the collective bargaining agreement between baseball and the players’ union.

The 38-year-old Rodriguez is a three-time MVP and 14-time all-star. The American baseball third baseman for the New York Yankees of Major League Baseball (MLB) previously played shortstop for the Seattle Mariners and the Texas Rangers. Considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time, Alex Rodriguez is the youngest player ever to hit 500 home runs, breaking the record Jimmie Foxx set in 1939, and the youngest to hit 600, besting the record of Babe Ruth by over a year. On September 24, 2010, A-Rod hit two home runs to surpass the mark of Sammy Sosa — 609 home runs, and became the all-time leader in home runs by a player of Hispanic descent. Rodriguez and the Yankees in December 2007 agreed to a 10-year, $275 million contract that was the richest contract in baseball history (breaking his previous record of $252 million). In February 2009, the New York Yankees slugger admitted to using steroids and said he used them from 2001 to 2003 when playing for the Texas Rangers because of “an enormous amount of pressure” to perform.

In 1993, Alex Rodriguez was drafted first overall by the Seattle Mariners and made his major league debut as the starting shortstop on July 8, 1994, in Boston at 18 years, 11 months, and 11 days of age. In 1996, Alex Rodriguez was selected by both Sporting News and Associated Press as the Major League Player of the Year, and came close to becoming the youngest MVP (Most Valuable Player) in baseball history, finishing second to Juan González. A-Rod, in 1998 season, was selected as Players Choice AL Player of the Year, won his 2nd Silver Slugger Award and finished in the top 10 in the MVP voting. In his final season with Seattle in 2000, Rodriguez was selected as the Major League Player of the Year by Baseball America and finished 3rd in the BBWAA AL MVP voting. He was associated by Sports Illustrated on February 7, 2009 of testing positive for anabolic steroids, testosterone and Primobolan, in 2003. Two days after the allegations, the baseball slugger admitted to steroid use from 2001 until 2003, claiming that he ceased using such substances after spring training that year.

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Sunday 28, Jul 2013

  Baseball Players Outraged At Doping Scandal

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Baseball Players Outraged At Doping Scandal

Baseball players, protective no more, are demanding harsher suspensions for those caught cheating. This was as soon as Ryan Braun accepted a season-ending 65-game suspension rather than fight Major League Baseball over evidence that he made use of performance enhancing drugs.

With this silent admission, Braun has lost a great deal of his credibility as well as more than one-third of a season. The worst thing that came up was Braun still considers himself to be above the rest as there are no details about all the performance-enhancing drugs the league knew he had used and there have been no straightforward admissions of guilt. The 29-year-old outfielder has never registered less than 25 home runs and 97 RBI in a full season, and he also sports a .312 career batting average and won the 2011 NL MVP award. His 2013 season was riddled by injuries, but he still managed to hit .298 with nine homers and 38 RBI through 61 contests.

Braun lost his deal with a chain of convenience stores as soon as he was suspended. Gary Gonczy, director of marketing and advertising for Kwik Trip, Inc., was quick to remark that his company will no longer use Braun as a spokesman.

Los Angeles Angels pitcher CJ Wilson said drug cheaters are lying to their fans, teammates, GMs, and owners and will get caught. Skip Schumaker of the Los Angeles Dodgers remarked that he is let down by Braun and said watching him talk right now makes me sick. He went on to add that he has autographed Braun jersey in his baseball room that he’ll be taking down and said he doesn’t want his son identifying what h he have worked so hard to get to and work so hard to have – he don’t want him comparing Braun to him. Matt Kemp of the Los Angeles Dodgers, who finished second to Braun in the 2011 MVP vote, remarked Braun should be stripped of the honor and said he doesn’t think anybody likes to be lied to, and he feels like a lot of people have felt betrayed. New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi said the 2011 MVP Braun was guilty as one doesn’t accept a deal unless he is guilty.

The Major League Baseball’s recent investigation into the closed anti-aging clinic Biogenesis brought suspicious eyes to more than a dozen players, including three-time AL MVP Alex Rodriguez of the Yankees, Melky Cabrera, now with the Toronto Blue Jays, Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli, and Seattle catcher Jesus Montero. Many believe that A-Rod can expect a much harsher penalty than the one Braun agreed to while his team expect Rodriguez could be accused of using PEDs over multiple seasons and of recruiting other athletes for the clinic. Alex Rodriguez may also be accused of attempting to obstruct the investigation of MLB and of not being truthful in the past with MLB when he discussed his relationship with Dr Anthony Galea, who pleaded guilty two years ago to a US federal charge of bringing unapproved drugs from Canada into the United States.

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Saturday 27, Jul 2013

  Ryan Braun Suspended Without Pay

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Ryan Braun Suspended Without Pay

Milwaukee Brewers Ryan Braun, a former National League MVP, has been suspended without pay for the rest of the season. The player later admitted that he “made mistakes” in violating Major League Baseball’s drug policies.

The 2011 National League MVP was suspended without pay for the rest of the season and the post-season after being tied to a Florida clinic accused of distributing performance enhancing drugs. A 65-game ban, 15 games more than the one he avoided last year was accepted by Braun. Last year, an arbitrator overturned his positive test for elevated testosterone because the urine sample had been improperly handled.

In another development, Matt Kemp who finished second behind Braun in the race for the 2011 National League MVP Award wants Ryan Braun stripped of NL MVP award following drug suspension. The Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder said the suspended Milwaukee Brewers slugger should be stripped of the honor and said people feel “betrayed” by Braun.

After the suspension news broke out, Braun said he is not perfect and realize now he has made some mistakes. He also remarked that he is willing to accept the consequences of those actions. Miami Marlins manager Mike Redmond said for these guys still to be involved with this stuff just baffles him and added that the education is there and everybody knows what you can and can’t take. Redmond said it baffles him that this continues to be a black cloud over the game and said he knows that Major League Baseball has done a great job of cleaning up the game and the testing policy and all that and it’s working. But he added that at the same time, too, it seems like we’ll go through a lull and then, bam, here comes another guy that gets suspended and it’s got to stop.

In January this year, Miami New Times reported that Braun, injured Yankees star Alex Rodriguez, and more than a dozen players were connected with Biogenesis of America, a now-closed anti-aging clinic.

MLB Commissioner Bud Selig announced the penalty for Braun citing the outfielder for unspecified “violations” of both baseball’s drug program and labor contract. The 29-year-old Braun was hitting .298 with nine homers and 38 RBIs this year and will miss the Milwaukee Brewers’ final 65 games without pay, costing him about $3 million of his $8.5 million salary. Brewers’ general manager Doug Melvin said he is disappointed as Braun is a very important player to our organization and to the ballclub and to our performance on the field. Rob Manfred, MLB’s executive vice-president for economics and league affairs, said in a statement, we commend Ryan Braun for taking responsibility for his past actions and added that we all agree that it is in the best interests of the game to resolve this matter. He added we look forward when Ryan returns to him making positive contributions to Major League Baseball, both on and off the field.

Other players tied to Biogenesis in media reports include Melky Cabrera, now with the Toronto Blue Jays, Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli, and Seattle catcher Jesus Montero.

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Friday 26, Jul 2013

  Hefty Doping Ban Expected For Alex Rodriguez

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Hefty Doping Ban Expected For Alex Rodriguez

Former Major League Baseball (MLB) Commissioner Fay Vincent says he has a feeling that Alex Rodriguez could be in for some harsh treatment. Vincent, though privy to details of the latest doping sweep overshadowing the sport, said his current MLB chief Bud Selig may decide to make an example of the famed New York Yankees slugger.

MLB’s active home run leader and highest-paid player, Rodriguez, has been implicated in a scandal that has already resulted in former National League MVP Ryan Braun being suspended Monday for the rest of the 2013 season. Braun decided not to contest the case made against him by MLB investigators and accepted a 65-game ban, plus any potential playoff games.

The 75-year Vincent remarked it seems to him that A-Rod is trying to make a deal like Braun and he thinks he’s trying to make a good deal and added that he doesn’t think a good deal is do-able. The ex-MLB chief said his guess is that A-Rod is going to be out for a very long period of time and it may be that his case is worse (than Braun) and if it is, they may be telling him he may be out for good and that’s a deal he can’t make. Resolution of the cases tied to the now-shut Biogenesis clinic in South Florida was an important step in the fight against doping, says Vincent and added that the performance enhancing drug problem is a threat to all of competitive athletics, from the Olympics to cycling to all sorts of sporting events that are threatened to the extent we let people use performance enhancing drugs. The former commissioner praised the cooperation of the players’ association and its chief Michael Weiner in the current doping case and said stamping out doping would have a fighting chance if the players joined team owners as partners in MLB, in contrast of their approach to the way the player’s association fought him in 1990 when he wrote a commissioner’s memo about the dangers of steroids to the game.

Rodriguez admitted before the 2009 season with the Yankees that he had used anabolic steroids earlier in his career and he according to media reports may have more evidence stacked against him than the MLB probe unearthed on Braun. The 38-year-old Rodriguez is guaranteed about $100 million on a deal that runs through 2017, with an additional $30 million in a series of home-run milestone bonuses due, if he reaches them. Vincent said he can see a very, very tough result for A-Rod that may be cushioned a little bit by a deal on the money side but he doesn’t see Bud giving A-Rod much of a deal and that will send a message that one of these days I’m going to throw someone out for life and we’re not going to have this anymore. Vincent added that would be a very popular move and he thinks it would really go a long way to putting his legacy in very strong shape.

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Monday 15, Apr 2013

  Major League Baseball Pays For Clinic Documents

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Major League Baseball Pays For Clinic Documents

The investigation by Major League Baseball of an anti-aging clinic that was linked with the supply of performance enhancing drugs to baseball players has taken a new turn with the office of the commissioner paying a former employee of the facility for documents related to the case.

Reports also suggested that at least one player, possibly Alex Rodriguez (A-Rod) linked to the clinic has purchased documents from a former clinic employee in order to destroy them. Many other players have also made attempts to buy the potentially incriminating documents related to the baseball doping scandal to keep them out of the hands of baseball’s investigators. The New York Times first reported the purchase by MLB and added that MLB investigators have ”what they believe is evidence” that a representative of Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez purchased medical records. Although the information received by MLB regarding Rodriguez seems credible, it has no hard evidence to connect the Yankees star to such a purchase, according to ESPN. But A-Rod’s problems can resurface if the Major League Baseball can obtain either physical evidence or sworn statements, in which case the baseball player could face suspension from baseball, and could also face possible criminal charges.

The American baseball third baseman for the New York Yankees of Major League Baseball (MLB) is considered one of the best baseball players of all time and is the youngest player ever to hit 500 home runs, breaking the record Jimmie Foxx set in 1939, and the youngest to hit 600, besting Babe Ruth’s record by over a year. The star baseball player has fourteen 100-RBI seasons in his career, more than any other player in history.

Since baseball has no subpoena power, its officials were compelled to pay money for documents as its officials had been concerned that more than one player was trying to do the same. The payments are not expected to exceed several thousand dollars.

The now-closed South Florida clinic that operated under the name Biogenesis of America is suspected of providing performance enhancing drugs to a number of major leaguers, including Alex Rodriguez, Melky Cabrera, Gio Gonzalez, Bartolo Colon, Nelson Cruz, and Yasmani Grandal and even Ryan Braun.

Previously, a request by Commissioner Bud Selig through two of his top deputies — Rob Manfred and Pat Courtney – was declined by the Miami New Times that was first reported the case after which the MLB filed a lawsuit against six people with connections to the Biogenesis clinic. In the lawsuit, MLB accused the clinic of damaging the sport by providing players with banned substances and the banned drugs supplied included testosterone, human growth hormone, and human chorionic gonadotropin.

In the past, Alex Rodriguez was linked to a Canadian doctor who pleaded guilty in the United States to offering banned substances to players. The Yankees player met with baseball investigators on the matter and denied taking any banned substances from the doctor but his claims were somehow insufficient for the authorities though the federal authorities did not provide all the facts of the case.

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Monday 25, Mar 2013

  Florida Clinic Sued By MLB For Doping Players

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Florida Clinic Sued By MLB For Doping Players

On Friday, Major League Baseball has sued a now-shuttered South Florida clinic and its operators and accused them of scheming to offer banned performance enhancing drugs to its players in violation of their MLB contracts.

Unspecified damages from Coral Gables anti-aging clinic Biogenesis of America and its operator, Anthony Bosch, were sought by the lawsuit in Miami-Dade Circuit Court. The lawsuit also named several other associates of Bosch, who is believed to be out of the country. It was contended by the Major League Baseball that the operators of the clinic solicited players to make use of banned drugs knowing that such use would violate their contracts, specifically the drug prevention and treatment program that became effective in 2003 and is a part of baseball’s collective bargaining agreement with the players, includes a list of banned substances and lays out penalties for violations and imposes testing requirements.

It was also contended by the lawsuit that former star Manny Ramirez, who is now signed to play for a team in Taiwan, obtained a prohibited substance from Bosch in 2009 that ultimately resulted in a suspension of 50 games for Ramirez by MLB when he was with the Los Angeles Dodgers, which marks the first time that the MLB has gone on the record saying Ramirez tested positive for the female fertility drug HCG, or human chorionic gonadotropin.

According to the lawsuit, the elements of the scheme included the use of fake or partial names on drug packages sent to players, visits to players at home or at hotels to personally administer the banned substances and claims made to the players that if used properly the drugs “would not result in a positive test” under the MLB drug program. The lawsuit said testosterone, human growth hormone, and human chorionic gonadotropin were among the banned drugs supplied and MLB players were told that the drugs would increase their strength and help them recover from injuries more quickly.

Attorneys Allen Weitzman and Matthew Menchel wrote in the complaint that MLB has suffered “costs of investigation, loss of goodwill, loss of revenue and profits and injury to its reputation, image, strategic advantage and fan relationships,” because of the alleged conspiracy. The lawsuit may offer a way for the Major League Baseball to more deeply investigate Biogenesis and Bosch through depositions of witnesses and subpoenas to obtain documents, although it seeks money damages. The MLB was rebuffed in an effort to get access to clinical records from the alternative Miami New Times newspaper, which has published detailed accounts of the alleged player drug use. The newspaper implicated New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, outfielder Melky Cabrera of the Toronto Blue Jays, Washington pitcher Gio Gonzalez, Oakland pitcher Bartolo Colon, Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz, and San Diego catcher Yasmani Grandal though most of them denied a link with Biogenesis. In the past, Rodriguez has admitted to using performance enhancing drugs and Colon, Cabrera, and Grandal were each suspended for 50 games last year for testing positive for elevated testosterone levels.

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Wednesday 06, Mar 2013

  Increasing Drug Penalties Possible In Baseball

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Increasing Drug Penalties Possible In Baseball

Baseball union head Michael Weiner has announced that there have been talks about increasing the penalties for violating the drug testing program of baseball.

Weiner said baseball already has the toughest penalties of any team sport and a ban of fifty games is more than one can see for the first time in hockey, basketball, and football. The baseball chief also said many players have expressed their desire to increase the penalties for sport cheaters and that may happen in 2014. However, any changes to the drug program must get the approval of both Major League Baseball and the players’ union.

The 51-year-old Weiner succeeded Donald Fehr as union head in 2009 and announced in August he is being treated for a brain tumor.

The Baseball union head added that one area where increased attention helped encourage change was in testing for human growth hormone and remarked that the players approved this change to improve the possibility of detection for the use of HGH and the players at this point have very little patience for players that are trying to cheat the system, and understand that year around HGH testing is an important component. Testing for human growth hormone began last year but was limited to spring training. Weiner also added that he will have discussions with the players who were named in a report by The Miami New Times as having allegedly purchased performance-enhancing drugs from a defunct Florida anti-aging clinic.

He, however, said reporters should refrain from jumping to conclusions about media reports linking players to the clinic accused of distributing banned performance enhancing drugs and said Major League Baseball is still investigating Biogenesis of America, the defunct anti-aging clinic in Coral Gables, Florida. Meanwhile, Washington Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez says tests for performance enhancing drugs that he provided have come back negative. He and other players were listed in a Miami New Times report as receiving performance-enhancing drugs in purported records of Biogenesis of America. Gonzalez said in a brief statement he expected the negative results and reiterated he has never taken any performance enhancing drugs.

Weiner also discussed the agreement with management last month to extend blood testing for human growth hormone into the regular season and the World Anti-Doping Agency laboratory in Laval, Quebec, as part of the change to the joint drug agreement will keep records of each player, including his baseline ratio of testosterone to epitestosterone. He also went on to remark that players understand it is important to have the strongest program possible, and given both the testosterone changes and the HGH changes, they are very much for it.

In a statement, Rob Manfred, baseball’s executive vice president for economics and league affairs, said one of the strengths of baseball’s Joint Drug Testing Program is that the bargaining parties have an ongoing dialogue about the program and potential changes that can make it even more effective. Manfred remarked that we are looking forward to discussions with the Major League Baseball Player Association about changes that may be needed to respond to recent developments.

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Saturday 16, Feb 2013

  Football Not Doing Enough To Fight Against Doping, Says WADA Chief

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Football Not Doing Enough To Fight Against Doping, Says WADA Chief

Speaking at the WADA Media Symposium in London, the president of the World Anti-Doping Agency said football authorities are still not doing enough testing for the banned blood booster EPO.

John Fahey said football should make more efforts in its fight against doping and his organization would be on hand to support that cause. He added that football authorities are not testing enough for Erythropoietin and WADA encourage them to do more and they should also be using intelligence and not just more tests to prevent doping in football.

The WADA president expressed his dismay at the refusal of the sport to adopt the Athlete’s biological passport as part of its weaponry in the fight against doping and went on to question the effectiveness of the current protocols of the game. He continued that more tests are a good deterrent factor and could be an effective way to catch but argues that the Athlete`s Biological Passport is a very effective tool and adding that would make them more effective.

A few days, former Real Sociedad president Inaki Badiola claimed the Spanish club made payments for banned substances between 2001-2007 although this has been denied.

The director-general of Wada, David Howman, cited the example of Major League Baseball for football to follow. The MB conducts more tests than many national anti-doping agencies and baseball players are subjected to four substance tests every year. On the other hand, top-level footballers and other players of team sports can go an entire career without encountering a single blood test.

Last month, the German newspaper Suddeutsche Zeitung claimed that the Bundesliga could not afford blood testing for its players despite annual turnover topping €2 billion last year. Fahey remarked that he can understand that anti-doping tests cost money and some sports have the capacity to pay much easier than other sports and he can only encourage all of them to see why this must be a priority to ensure the integrity of their game.

The president of the world anti-doping agency also emphasized the importance of non-analytical evidence in the global doping fight and said high-profile cases involving Marion Jones and Lance Armstrong were not primarily dependent on blood and urine analysis but on testimonies and investigations. He said we are not in the business of reacting to rumor and nor is any other anti-doping agency and one has to be obviously careful with the information received. Fahey also remarked that WADA gets anonymous information frequently at its headquarters on a daily basis and it ensures that the appropriate body is given that information to follow up, and one has to act on facts. The WADA chief some senior tennis players have remarked they were not tested terribly on a regular basis and tennis and football can do more.

Fahey’s mandatory maximum six-year term as the president of WADA ends this year and the former premier of New South Wales who also played a key role in Sydney’s successful bid for the 2000 Olympic Games says he had no intention of returning to front-line Australian politics.

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Wednesday 30, Jan 2013

  Latest Doping Scandal May Spell End For Alex Rodriguez

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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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Wednesday 05, Sep 2012

  Support Pouring In From All Quarters For Lance Armstrong

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Support Pouring In From All Quarters For Lance Armstrong – Cliff Notes
 

lance armstronAfter seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong was banned for life and stripped of all his titles, support for the cyclist and his cancer foundation increased in numbers.

In Montreal, hundreds of people came out in support of Lance Armstrong and chugged up Mont Royal with the cyclist in a fast-paced training run. Many of the runners said they support him, regardless of the controversies, and added that Armstrong is an inspiration for those fighting against cancer and they truly lauded him for his successful charitable foundation.

Oakley, a longtime supporter and partner of the cyclist, said the decision of Lance is taken in high esteem. He has been an inspiration to many and Oakley will continue to support The Lance Armstrong Foundation. A company that makes natural supplements with quercetin, FRS, said it supports the cyclist and his commitment in increasing awareness and his fight against cancer and the company is proud to be associated with his Livestrong Foundation.

Lance Armstrong cancer speech days after titles stripped – Video

Shoe-giant Nike said the company is disappointed that Lance Armstrong would not be participating in competitions but said it would continue to support the cyclist and his foundation that serves cancer survivors. Sporting KC soccer club CEO Robb Heineman said the club believes strongly in mission of the Livestrong Foundation and it truly appreciates the statement from the Lance Armstrong Foundation for continuing the fight against cancer. Johnson Health Tech that makes a line of fitness equipment with name of Armstrong’s foundation on it said the company reaffirms its support of Armstrong and the Lance Armstrong Foundation as they work tirelessly for supporting people and families affected by cancer, especially those in undeserved communities.

Former Major League Baseball player Barry Bonds also came to the defense of Armstrong and said he has great respect for the cyclist and what all he has done for the sport. “I think if it wasn’t for him, U.S. cycling wouldn’t even be here,” Bonds said. “He was the greatest cyclist of all.”

In another development, twenty-three California state senators are asking two U.S. senators from the state to request a Congressional review of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency in the wake of Armstrong sanctions. In a letter sent to U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D) and U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D), it was written that the U.S. Anti-doping Agency receives a majority of funds from taxpayer dollars through the Office of National Drug Control Policy at the White House. The lawmakers demanded that the two senators should call upon the appropriate oversight committees of the United States Congress for developing appropriate constitutional protections and conducting a comprehensive review of USADA’s operations and finances. It was also demanded that special attention must be paid to unilateral changes by USADA in rules for dealing with athletes who have never failed a drug test.

Armstrong is the only athlete to face doping charges by the anti-doping agency despite the lack of a confirmed positive drug test and the cyclist recently declined to go to arbitration to fight charges made by USADA against him saying the process followed by it was unconstitutional.

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