Baseball nuclear Armageddon exploded at Sports Illustrated today when the magazine/web site dropped an A-Bomb on R-Rod. The website reports that Yankee slugger Alex Rodriquez tested positive in 2003 for two steroids: testosterone and primobolan (not legal in the US).
As background, A-Rod delivered fantastic 2001-2-3 seasons for the Texas Rangers. The steroid slugging era was chugging on full-steam with accusations flying everywhere. The MLB Players Association agreed to PED testing with the MLB; if a certain percent of players tested positive, then a full blow elaborate PED testing system would be set up for MLB players. As we all know now, the minimum criteria (5%) of positive tests was met which meant steroid testing for steroid sluggers.
Steroid testing started in spring training 2003, and apparently continued throughout the year. Wonder when A-Rod dropped his positive urine? Wonder how long Rodriguez juiced?
In 2001 for the Ranger A-Rod put up monstrous numbers: 52, 135, .318. A-Rod's 2002 was even better: 57, 142, .300. Slugging was .622 and .623 respectively.
In 2003, A-Rod launched a 47, 118, .298 year, which was good for the MVP, even though the numbers were down from previous years. Considering A-Rod's positive tests, one wonders why production decreased in 2003. To Sports Illustrated:
In 2003, when he won the American League home run title and the AL Most Valuable Player award as a shortstop for the Texas Rangers, Alex Rodriguez tested positive for two anabolic steroids, four sources have independently told Sports Illustrated.
Rodriguez's name appears on a list of 104 players who tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball's '03 survey testing, SI's sources say. As part of a joint agreement with the MLB Players Association, the testing was conducted to determine if it was necessary to impose mandatory random drug testing across the major leagues in 2004.
When approached by an SI reporter on Thursday at a gym in Miami, Rodriguez declined to discuss his 2003 test results. "You'll have to talk to the union," said Rodriguez, the Yankees' third baseman since his trade to New York in February 2004. When asked if there was an explanation for his positive test, he said, "I'm not saying anything."
Test results were obtained when federal agents raided CDT labs as part of the BALCO investigation.
The testing procedure itself appears to be corrupt:
Baseball's career and single season home run record holder, Barry Bonds, will be on trial soon for lying about his steroid use. The man pegged as having the best chance to overtake Bonds was A-Rod, who now appears to be a big time juicer. Mark McGwire, who broke Roger Maris's single season HR record was exposed last month as a huge 'roider.
Baseball, like track, needs to dump the records of the lost steroids and PEDs decades. Most performance records from the steroid decades appear to be tainted.