Saturday, February 7, 2009

A-Rod Outed For Positive Roid Test

A bombshell was dropped on the world today. A-Rod apparently tested positive for steroids back in 2003. This report comes from Selena Roberts and David Epstein @ According to the article, 4 sources, all of whom want to remain anonymous, allege that A-Rod's name appears on a list of 104 players who tested positive for steroid use back in 2003, when Alex was a member of the Texas Rangers. Boom.

The article also mentions that an SI reporter approached Alex in a Miami gym to discuss these allegations. A-Rod of course didn't answer their questions, saying, "You'll have to talk to the union. I'm not saying anything." I wonder what response the reporter thought he or she was going to get? Alex, as he should have, deflected the question and put it on the union. No athlete in their right mind would answer that question. Calls from SI to the MLB player's union director, Donald Fehr, were as you'd imagine, unreturned.

For starters, if true, it would be a little depressing that Alex used steroids. I always thought he was one of the clean ones. But, this doesn't make me like him any less. He hasn't tested positive as a member of the Yankees, and unfortunately, people are going to overlook that. He's been MVP twice since donning the Pinstripes, both campaigns done without the use of steroids, according to the random drug tests.

I also find it extremely odd that only 1 of the 104 names on the list was made public. I think the story would be much much huger had the crackerjack staff at SI uncovered all 104 names and made them public. This now just looks like a personal vendetta against A-Rod. As I was perusing through the comments at the blog post about this subject over at Pete Abraham's blog, I noticed some people started discussing one of the article's authors, Selena Roberts. They made mention that Roberts used to work for the NY Times and was pretty much there to stalk Rodriguez. This link is to an article of hers where she basically makes Alex out to be a slumlord. Roberts was also mentioned to be very outspoken when it came to the rape allegations that were made against the Duke lacrosse team. Sounds to me like Selena Roberts might not exactly be a reporter who is on the up-and-up and is looking more for the juicy story, which may or may not be written with all the facts. I don't know much about her or her work, but that's my first impression of her. And that's not to say I don't believer the A-Rod article. I just question the motives. Where are the other 103 names? This is definitely going to become a "Yankee" thing when in fact it's much bigger. 104 players represent a little less than 15% of the league. If anyone thinks their team is in the free-and-clear, they're sadly mistaken. It probably won't be long before other names start getting leaked.

According to this article written on, back in April 2004, "agents seized data that could determine the identities of 104 Major League players who tested positive during the 2003 "survey testing" -- tests which were intended to remain strictly confidential, with names known only to the lab that conducted them. " The key words in that passage are "remain strictly confidential." It looks like that was thrown right out the window when these 4 sources opened up their yaps. I question what their motivation was for breaking the confidentiality agreement and why only one name was mentioned as being on the list. It's just a head scratcher and another reason why I question if all of this is on the up and up.

If you were to put me on the spot and ask me if I believe the article, I'd say yes. The game was definitely dirtier back then and I don't doubt that Alex was in fact mixed up in it. But, this has nothing to do with him being a Yankee. There are probably going to be hundreds of blog posts or news articles posted in the next few days/weeks that somehow spin an anti-Yankee yarn around this when in fact it's not. Sure, Alex plays for the Yankees now, but didn't back in 2003 and hasn't tested positive since joining the Yanks in 2004. I don't think anyone should jump all over him without mentioning that 103 others tested positive, several of which are probably high profile players, and coming from every roster in MLB. If the biggest name in the sport is on the list, odds are that many other big names are on there as well. 15% of the league is a lot of people. If you're a fan of another team and think your team is clean, I'd love to hear why.

I'm really curious to see what comes of this story in the coming weeks with Spring Training kicking off in less than a week. Between Joe Torre's book and this new A-Rod controversy, it's a pretty interesting time in the Yankee Universe. It'll get worse before it gets better.

Peace, love and Pinstripes,