Alex Rodriguez is expected to follow the path reportedly taken by Ryan Braun and refuse to answer questions when he meets Friday with Major League Baseball officials investigating players’ alleged ties to the Biogenesis clinic and performance-enhancing drugs.
MLB officials, according to ESPN’s “Outside the Lines,” have met with 10 players whose names have been linked to the Miami clinic. They also refused to answer questions, according to ESPN New York.
MLB officials began building a case against the players after Tony Bosch, the clinic’s founder, agreed to cooperate with the investigation. Bosch was expected to turn over phone, text, email and other records tying players to performance-enhancing drugs.
Significant suspensions are expected — and they may be impending. ESPN reports that MLB is expected to suspend Braun, Rodriguez and as many as 20 players after next week’s All-Star break. At issue is the length of the suspensions. From ESPN’s report:
Sources said the commissioner’s office was considering 100-game bans for Braun and Rodriguez, the punishment for a second offense, even though neither player was previously suspended for violating MLB’s drug policy.
The argument, one source said, would be that they — and possibly other players — committed multiple offenses by receiving performance-enhancing drugs from Bosch and by lying about it.
Braun, the 2011 National League MVP, won his appeal of a 50-game suspension triggered by a positive drug test in February 2012. According to the New York Daily News, he met with baseball investigators on the Biogenesis matter on June 29.
MLB spokesman Patrick Courtney told USA Today that MLB remains “in the midst of an active investigation” and that, as far as suspensions go, “no decisions have been made.”
A-Rod, who is continuing a minor-league assignment with the Yankees’ Class A Tampa affiliate, told reporters Tuesday that he knew nothing about a meeting with MLB. “Not that I know of, and if I knew, I couldn’t share with you guys,” Rodriguez said (via the New York Daily News). “We’ve been fully instructed to not comment on that case.”
A-Rod and Braun may be the biggest names in the Biogenesis investigation, but they’re far from the only ones. That much A-Rod would say.
“There’s a lot of players involved,” he said. “I know that.”