MLB investigating doping report involving top players
(Reuters) - Major League Baseball (MLB) said on Tuesday it is investigating a report alleging several of its high-profile players were sold performance-enhancing drugs by a South Florida anti-aging clinic.
MLB said it a statement it was "extremely disappointed" to hear any alleged links between players and banned drugs but was investigating the claims, published in the Miami New Times on Tuesday.
"We remain fully committed to following all leads and seeking the appropriate outcomes for all those who use, purchase and are involved in the distribution of banned substances, which have no place in our game," MLB said.
"We are in the midst of an active investigation and are gathering and reviewing information. We will refrain from further comment until this process is complete."
The Miami New Times, a free weekly newspaper published in Miami, named several players that it said had allegedly been sold human growth hormone, testosterone and anabolic steroids by the clinic's head Anthony Bosch.
The newspaper said a former employee of the clinic, which is now closed, had provided handwritten medical records from the clinic that showed links between the players and banned drugs.
Two of the players named in the report, New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez and Washington Nationals starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez, have denied the allegations.
"The news report about a purported relationship between Alex Rodriguez and Anthony Bosch are not true. Alex Rodriguez was not Mr. Bosch's patient, he was never treated by him and he was never advised by him," Rodriguez's attorney said in a statement.
"The purported documents referenced in the story -- at least as they relate to Alex Rodriguez -- are not legitimate."
The Yankees said they would not comment on the matter while it was being investigated.
"We fully support the (MLB) Commissioner's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. This matter is now in the hands of the Commissioner's Office. We will have no further comment until that investigation has concluded," the Yankees said in a statement.
Gonzalez denied the allegations against him on his Twitter account.
"I've never used performance enhancing drugs of any kind and I never will, I've never met or spoken with tony Bosch or used any substance," he tweeted.
The Texas Rangers issued a statement after the club's outfielder Nelson Cruz was also identified in the report.
"The Texas Rangers were contacted late last week by Miami New Times regarding the story posted this morning," the Rangers said in a statement.
"At that time, the Rangers contacted Major League Baseball on that inquiry. The team has no further comment."
(Reporting by Julian Linden in New York; Editing by Frank Pingue)