Gio Gonzalez trained at the University of Miami this offseason and, according to a photo the Nationals pitcher posted to his Instagram account 12 weeks ago, he worked out with a strength and conditioning coach at the university named Jimmy Goins. In the photo, Goins is described as Gonzalez’s offseason strength coach.
Both men were linked to a Miami anti-aging clinic that is being investigated by Major League Baseball for, according to a published report Tuesday in the Miami New Times, supplying performance-enhancing drugs and other supplements to a handful of active major league players, among others.
Anthony Bosch, the chief of clinic Biogenesis, listed Gonzalez and Goins as clients, according to the New Times report.
“Goins is recorded in multiple client lists; in one detailed page dated December 14, 2011, Bosch writes he’s selling him Anavar, testosterone, and a Winstrol/B-12 mix and charging him $400 a month,” the New Times report said. “Another, from this past December, includes sales of HGH and testosterone.”
In the photo posted to Gonzalez’s Instagram account on Nov. 6, Gonzalez and Goins are standing, smiling in front of what appears to be an office. Goins is wearing a grey University of Miami shirt and Gonzalez is wearing a red Jordan brand T-shirt. The caption for the photo reads: “My offseason strength coach Jimmy Goins.”
Gonzalez, third in National League Cy Young voting in 2012, was not directly connected n the report to banned substances such as human growth hormone and IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor), unlike Alex Rodriguez or Melky Cabrera. The report linked Gonzalez to three substances listed as zinc, MIC and Aminorip. Without independent verification, it’s not clear what MIC and Aminorip are, or if they appear on MLB’s list of banned substances.
Gonzalez on Tuesday denied he used performance-enhancing drugs, saying he had “never met or spoken with” Bosch.
Gonzalez’s father, Max, denied his son’s use of any banned substances to the New Times and said that it was he, not his son, who had consulted with Bosch to lose weight.
“My son works very, very hard, and he’s as clean as apple pie,” Max Gonzalez told the alternative weekly. “I went to Tony because I needed to lose weight. A friend recommended him, and he did great work for me. But that’s it. He never met my son. Never. And if I knew he was doing these things with steroids, do you think I’d be dumb enough to go there?”
Goins, according to his biography on Miami’s athletic department website, is in his ninth year at the university, working primarily with the baseball teams and track & field teams.
Goins’s attorney, Gordon Fenderson, told the Sun Sentinel that his client “hasn’t done anything wrong either personally or as a representative of the University of Miami. And as far as being on a client list of a certain doctor, any connection of the University of Miami or their baseball program would be purely coincidental.”
Reached by phone Wednesday afternoon and asked of Goins’s relationship with Gonzalez, Fenderson responded: “I had no idea.”
A voicemail on Max Gonzalez’s cellphone was not immediately returned. A request to speak with Gio Gonzalez was made Wednesday morning, through a representative of his agents.
Gonzalez has not tested positive for any performance-enhancing drugs and no suspensions have been issued. Baseball officials are investigating Bosch’s clinic — as are federal and Florida authorities, according to reports.
It’s worth noting, however, that baseball rules stipulate that a player can be suspended for possession and use of performance-enhancing drugs, known “a non-analytical positive,” even without a positive drug test. Those suspensions are less frequent and harder to prove because they require evidence, records or documents. And in this case, it appears MLB investigators would need more than just Bosch’s notebook to hand out any suspensions.
UPDATE, 4:16 p.m.: The New Times released six images of the documents used in its report, which mentions both Gio and Max Gonzalez.
Max Gonzalez is listed as Biogenesis client, dated June 2012, on what appears to be an invoice of payments, deliveries and pickups. He told the New Times he was a client of Bosch, was referred to him by a friend and wanted to lose weight because he had “high cholesterol and high blood sugar.”
According to the report, Max Gonzalez couldn’t offer an explanation why his son’s name appeared on other documents.
Gio Gonzalez’s name appears on another image of a document posted by the New Times that also has the names of Cabrera, Rangers slugger Nelson Cruz and former Miami pitcher Cesar Carrillo. There were annotations next to the players’ names of home runs hit and runs driven in. The words “Gio Gonzalez (pitcher)” are crossed out, along with the other names.
In three images of a document, Max Gonzalez and Gio Gonzalez’s names appear together, both crossed out. On one page, under Gio Gonzalez’s name, handwritten notes say “order” and “zinc/MIC … & Aminorip for Gio.” There also appears to be a dollar amount, potentially over $1,000, and other illegible words.
In the final released image of a document, Gio Gonzalez’s name appears on a page with the words “pink cream,” “zinc,” “l-glut,” “l-argin” and other words. Below his name, pitching statistics are scribbled out.
Elsewhere in Bosch’s notebook, according to the report, ”pink cream” is a “a complex formula that also includes testosterone.”
UPDATE, 5:17 p.m.: Bosch’s attorney, Susy Ribero-Ayala refuted the New Times report in a statement Tuesday, saying it was “filled with inaccuracies, innuendo and misstatements” and Bosch “vehemently denies the assertions that MLB players such as Alex Rodriguez and Gio Gonzalez were treated by or associated with him.”
Reached by phone on Wednesday and asked about Max Gonzalez’s relationship with Bosch, Ribero-Ayala wouldn’t comment or elaborate.
“I’m sticking to the statement I released and I’m not releasing any other statements at this time,” she said.
UPDATE, 7:37 p.m.: League officials plan on interviewing all of the players connected to Biogenesis, according to a Yahoo! Sports report, and hope to meet with New Times editors and lawyers in Florida in the coming days to discuss the documents used in Tuesday’s report and whether they will be provided to MLB to aid its investigation.