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Victor Conte: 50 percent of MLB players are using PEDs

Victor-ConteBALCO founder Victor Conte sat down for an interview with Jim Rome on on Wednesday and discussed his relationship with New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez. During the segment, Conte confirmed a report from last week that claimed A-Rod contacted him with the help of Bill Romanowski in search of legal products that could help give him an edge.

“In the month previous to his visit I was contacted by Bill Romanowski a couple times and he expressed that Alex would like to meet with me for consultation regarding nutritional supplementation,” Conte told Rome. “They wanted to make sure that nobody was in the building and the coast was clear and so on. It was a little bit bizarre that they didn’t just mosey on in.”

If Rodriguez was indeed searching for legal supplements, it’s strange that he wanted to be that secretive. Then again, BALCO doesn’t exactly have the best reputation with Major League Baseball.

“I told him straight up I said, ‘What is this about?’” Conte said. “He said, ‘Performance enhancement — legal performance enhancement.’ So I was very clear that I have no interest in anything from the dark side.”

When Conte was asked about MLB’s drug program, he described it as “inept.” In fact, he estimated that half of the players in the league use performance-enhancing substances at some point during the calendar year.

“If I define (players using performance-enhancing drugs) as the entire calendar year, including the offseason, I believe it’s about 50%. Listen, performance-enhancing drugs work. I know that.”

That is a much different opinion from that of former Detroit Tiger Robert Fick, who recently admitted to using steroids but said he believes baseball is almost 90% clean. However, Conte may have more first-hand knowledge than someone like Fick. If nothing else, A-Rod’s alleged visit with Conte adds another element of shadiness to his story.

H/T Eye on Baseball

Alex Rodriguez will reportedly sue MLB if suspension is not lifted

Alex Rodriguez YankeesNew York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez is not going to go down without a fight. If that wasn’t obvious before this week, it should have become so when he hired one of New York’s top criminal defense lawyers to represent him. While the general assumption is that A-Rod wants his suspension reduced, a new report from TMZ indicates it may be more complicated than that.

According to TMZ, Rodriguez wants the whole suspension wiped clean and is prepared to bring the case to federal court if he does not achieve that outcome during the appeal process.

The reason for A-Rod’s bold demand — A-Rod sources familiar with the investigation tell us Alex hasn’t tested positive and never ‘knowingly’ used PEDs since 2003 … the last season he admitted using ‘roids.  Our sources say A-Rod has been drug tested 11 times between 2011 and the present … and all of the results were negative.

Our sources fume it’s ‘absurd’ Ryan Braun – who reportedly tested positive in 2011 and then lied about it — was only benched for the duration of this season.  They say it proves MLB’s investigation of A-Rod and the Biogenesis Clinic has been ‘abusive and borderline illegal.’”

TMZ’s sources also reportedly claim A-Rod is planning to sue Major League Baseball for a number of things, including a violation of baseball’s Collective Bargaining Agreement. Apparently the scorned slugger feels that MLB has no evidence to support its claim that he intentionally impeded their investigation.

In an interview with WFAN on Tuesday, Rodriguez’s lawyer David Cornwell said A-Rod’s camp is challenging MLB’s claim that he used banned substances over “multiple years.”

It is hard to even fathom Bud Selig and MLB “losing” their battle against Rodriguez. That would be an incredible embarrassment for the league and a massive hit to the drug prevention program’s credibility.

Alex Rodriguez hires top criminal defense lawyer Joe Tacopina

Alex Rodriguez YankeesNew York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez is reportedly pulling out all the stops to defend himself against the 211-game suspension he was given by Major League Baseball. According to the NY Post’s Page Six, A-Rod has hired top New York criminal defense lawyer Joe Tacopina to head up his legal team.

Tacopina is known for successfully defending clients in a number of high-profile cases including ex-NYPD officer Kenneth Moreno, who was acquitted of charges that he raped a drunk woman in her apartment, and former New York State Senator Hiram Monserrate, who plead guilty to using $100,000 that was intended for a nonprofit company to help his campaign.

“Joe is a fighter, and that is what Alex needs right now,” a source reportedly told the NY Post. “He has been brought on to reinforce the trial team, there’s a possibility this could go all the way to federal court. Joe is known for putting the hammer down, he’s going to take on the Yankees and take on MLB.”

[Related: A-Rod reportedly secretively got products from founder of BALCO]

The Yankees recently fined A-Rod $150,000 for seeking a second opinion on his hamstring without consulting them first, and a source said Tacopina believes that was an attempt to “break his spirit.” New York obviously wants out of Rodriguez’s contract, although there would be nothing they can do about it unless he is suspended for a long period of time. Even still, they would have to pay him when he returned or release him and pay his entire salary.

Given that MLB claims it has evidence against A-Rod proving that he interfered with their investigation, he could face federal charges. Having an experienced defense attorney like Tacopina on his side would be beneficial if that should happen.

Report: Alex Rodriguez secretively got products from Victor Conte

Alex Rodriguez YankeesAlex Rodriguez consulted BALCO founder Victor Conte and secretively purchased legal products from the chemist last year, according to a report.

The New York Daily News says Rodriguez, with the assistance of former NFL linebacker Bill Romanowski, sought out Conte last season and asked for legal products that could help give him an edge.

Conte, who spent time in prison in 2005 for distributing steroids and money laundering, has changed his career path and now says he provides athletes with legal products aimed to give them an edge in competition. He met with MLB last week to discuss his involvement with A-Rod, and he talked with the Daily News about his experience with the New York Yankees third baseman.

Conte says Romanowski, who admitted to using steroids and growth hormone provided by Conte’s BALCO company, tried to put the chemist in touch with A-Rod for a few months last year. Conte did not meet A-Rod until the Yankees player showed up uninvited at his Scientific Nutrition for Advance Conditioning (SNAC) office in San Carlos, Calif., while the Yankees were in town to play the Oakland A’s in May 2012.

A-Rod wanted the meeting to be secretive, so Romanowski checked out the office first to make sure nobody was around to see them.

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Jack Clark accuses Albert Pujols of using steroids, also mentions Justin Verlander

Albert-Pujols-Angels-slumpFormer MLB slugger Jack Clark began working as a radio host on WGNU 920 AM’s afternoon slot this week, and he has already managed to gain national attention. Clark, who belted 340 home runs over his 18-year MLB career, has mentioned twice how former personal trainer Chris Mihlfeld told him he injected Albert Pujols with performance-enhancing drugs.

Mihlfeld used to be Pujols’ personal trainer. In 2006, Mihlfeld’s name was linked to performance-enhancing drugs after Jason Grimsley, one of his former clients, admitted to taking steroids. That resulted in Pujols having to defend himself against PED accusations, which has has done several times since.

During a phone interview with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Thursday, Clark spoke about how he worked with Mihlfeld in 2000 as a coach of the Los Angeles Dodgers and said the former personal trainer tried to encourage him to take steroids like Pujols was. Clark claims he was simply looking for a nutrition program, which led to the following exchange with Mihlfeld.

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Biogenesis has some hilarious Yelp reviews

Tony BoschTony Bosch’s Biogenesis anti-aging clinic may have a horrendous reputation among Major League Baseball executives and fans, but it has some fantastic reviews online. A number of folks who claim to have gone to Bosch’s clinic for treatment have recently taken to the popular review website Yelp and shared their experiences.

Before we create confusion, this is obviously a joke. I happen to think it’s a very funny one. Biogenesis has received an average of 4.5 stars, and from the sound of it, they have been able to help people overcome some serious struggles.

When my friend Alex from New York told me of some great results he’s had, I new I had to go see Tony and the fellas at Biogenesis.  Best decision I ever made!

#yolked #swoll #beast #guns #cannons #muscles #juice

Bosch has helped high schoolers:

I was having a sophomore slump on my high school baseball team . So halfway through the season , I had enough of it . I went here & the employees were very helpful . They gave me some stuff that guaranteed to improve my batting average . Halfway through the season I batted .182 and after this I ended up hitting .465 & being selected to the all county team ! Thanks Biogenesis of America . I hope to make to the pros one day .

And he has even revived the career of a senior citizen:

At 64 years old, I thought my baseball days were well behind me but thanks to the “weight loss” products I got from the guys down at Biogenesis, I’m a bulked up power hitter. Coincidentally, the NY Yankees just found an extra $27,000,000 in their salary budget. Wish me luck, baby, I’m Bronx bound!

Now that we see how much Bosch means to so many people, we understand why more than a dozen MLB players were inclined to pay him a visit (or several). Alex Rodriguez isn’t a bad guy, he just used Yelp like the rest of us would use it to find the best local seafood.

H/T Jesse Spector via Eye on Baseball

MLBPA director Michael Weiner: Alex Rodriguez suspension is ‘almost ridiculous’

Alex Rodriguez YankeesMajor League Baseball made an unprecedented move on Monday when it suspended New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez for 211 games because of his alleged involvement with Biogenesis. A-Rod has never failed a non-survey drug test, and the penalty for first-time offenders is a 50-game suspension. The belief is that Rodriguez interfered with MLB’s investigation and is being penalized for more than just using performance-enhancing drug.

Naturally, the MLB Players Association is defending A-Rod and his right to appeal. During an interview with “The Dan Patrick Show” on Monday, MLBPA executive director Michael Weiner ripped Bud Selig in arguing in favor of Rodriguez.

“We feel what (Selig) did, frankly, was inappropriate and almost ridiculous,” Weiner said. “Look at the penalties that have been (given) out and cases that have been decided by the commissioner’s officer along with the Players Association. Nothing comes close to 211 games.”

Again, the belief is that no other player’s involvement with Biogenesis ran as deep as A-Rod’s. No other player has — to our knowledge — been accused of destroying evidence. In addition, there has also been speculation that Rodriguez led other players to Tony Bosch’s clinic. Weiner said both sides tried to work out an agreement but were unsuccessful in doing so.

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