There were two big stories in the world of performance-enhancing drugs, both released on Tuesday. One involved Alex Rodriguez, Nelson Cruz, Melky Cabrera, and other baseball players being listed in the records of a shady clinic in Miami, Fla. The other involved Ray Lewis receiving a deer antler spray containing a banned substance from a shady clinic outside Birmingham, Ala. Maybe you haven't closely followed either story, maybe you don't know the exact evidence, or the timeline of the allegations, but I'm fairly certain you at least realize these were two separate scandals.
There's at least one full-time sportswriter in America who's still confused.
Nate Rider, of The Daily News in Batavia, N.Y., wrote a column on Alex Rodriguez. (Lede sentence, so you know what you're getting into: "Once a cheater, always a cheater and Alex Rodriguez has evidently made it clear that he fits this persona with the utmost grandeur.")
He can deny it all he wants - even hire a lawyer in an attempt to save face, which he has - but his name is being associated with a number of know users, Melky Cabrera and Bartolo Colon to name two, which are allegedly mentioned numerous times in ledgers from the Miami-based anti-aging clinic Biogenesis that supposedly supplied athletes with PEDs.
Fine so far...
Even the Baltimore Ravens' Ray Lewis has been accused of being associated with this clinic and its chief front man Anthony Bosch, as well as professional golfer Vijay Singh.
Ray Lewis and Vijay Singh have not been associated with Biogenesis and Anthony Bosch. They've been associated with S.W.A.T.S. and Mitch Ross. The baseball players in Biogenesis's records received numerous banned substances, including HGH and synthetic testosterone, over the course of many years. The athletes tied to S.W.A.T.S. received the "Ultimate Spray," containing the growth hormone IGF-1, and in Lewis's case, he ordered it this past October.
And lest you think this was a typo or a single oversight, Rider continues to go all in on Rodriguez's PED use.
Noticeably past his prime and overpowered at the plate by average pitchers, Rodriguez batted .272 with 18 HRs and 57 RBI in 122 games. And he made $29 million for that ‘performance.' All the while he batted .116 in the playoffs with no round-trippers and three batted in. And we all remember his repeated benching in last year's postseason, when all Yankee fans were clamoring for, yes, Eric Chavez.
So, somewhere along the line A-Rod turned to deer antler spray, which is exactly as it sounds.
It seems almost cruel to point out that those weren't Rodriguez's playoff stats at all.
RIDER: A-Rod still a cheater [The Daily News]