SBD/March 13, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Miami New Times Declines To Give MLB Docs Related To Potential PED Use By Players

Braun is among several MLBers linked to the Biogenesis clinic in South Florida
The Miami New Times, which broke a story in January linking 25 MLBers to a Miami lab that allegedly distributed PEDs, yesterday announced that it "will not release documents to MLB that possibly illustrate a relationship" between the players and the lab, according to Gabe Lacques of USA TODAY. So if MLB "aims to impose discipline" on the players, it will "have to do so without a trove of documents that could have formed the crux of its case." Even with the New Times' cooperation, it would have "been a challenge for MLB to make any suspension of a player linked" to the Biogenesis lab. MLB in the absence of a positive test would have "been forced to suspend any of the players based on a 'non-analytical positive' that requires it to show a player acquired or used banned substances through other means" (USA TODAY, 3/13). MLB said that despite the decision, its investigation "will continue" (NEWSDAY, 3/13).

MLB'S KEY LIMITATION: YAHOO SPORTS' Jeff Passan wrote lost amid the New Times' "flailing, logic-deprived rationale behind refusing to hand over documents" linking Brewers LF Ryan Braun, Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez and dozens of other baseball players "to a South Florida performance-enhancing-drug peddler was some real news." Despite the "failings of federal officials in past high-profile cases that married athletes and PEDs, the Florida Department of Health has started an investigation into Anthony Bosch, operator of the Biogenesis clinic." While MLB "may have the budget and resources to go after players who used PEDs ... it lacks one very important tool the government has at its disposal: subpoena power." Any governmental intervention is "a gift to MLB, which has struggled to find footing early in what it expects to be a long and drawn-out pursuit of the Biogenesis players" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 3/12).
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