Alex Rodriguez ratted out Manny Ramirez, Ryan Braun to feds in PED probe, report says

Former Major League Baseball player Alex Rodriguez attends an NBA basketball game

Former Major League Baseball player Alex Rodriguez attends an NBA basketball game between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Minnesota Timberwolves Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2023, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

Alex Rodriguez ratted out Manny Ramirez, Ryan Braun to feds in PED probe, report says

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Chuck Schilken

Sept. 13, 2023

Alex Rodriguez told federal agents nine years ago that three Major League Baseball All-Stars Manny Ramirez, Ryan Braun and an unnamed player were performance-enhancing drug clients of Biogenesis founder Anthony Bosch, according to an ESPN report.

In 2014, then-New York Yankees star had been summoned by federal agents as part of their investigation into the Biogenesis of America clinic. Rodriguez was granted so-called “Queen for a Day” status that prevented any information he shared that day could not be used against him in later legal proceedings.

Rodriguez had to tell the truth, or he would have been in big trouble if he were caught lying to the feds.

Rodriguez talked and in the process ratted out some fellow big-name players for being involved in the doping scandal that rocked the MLB at the time, according to the ESPN report on the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s investigation that exposed the largest performance-enhancing drugs operation in U.S. sports history 10 years ago.

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Two of those players were Ramirez, a star for the Dodgers and other teams whose MLB career had since ended, and Braun, a Granada Hills High graduate and the 2011 National League MVP who played for the Milwaukee Brewers from 2007-2020. The third player, identified by ESPN only as “another All-Star player.” That player, the article written by Mike Fish notes, “never tested positive for any PED use, was never interviewed by authorities and was never suspended by MLB.”

As part of its reporting for the investigation series, ESPN viewed more than 1,400 pages of confidential DEA investigative documents. Those records showed that during his interview with federal agents on Jan. 29, 2014, Rodriguez told investigators of three players that he had been informed by Bosch, Biogenesis’ clinic operator, were PED clients. None of the athletes connected to the investigation were targeted as criminals.

Months before his interview with federal agents, Rodriguez Rodriguez denied a “60 Minutes” report that his camp had leaked documents linking Braun and then-Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli to the scandal. (Cervelli was never named an All-Star in his 13-year MLB career and presumably is not the third player named by Rodriguez to investigators.)

Rodriguez and Cervelli declined comment to ESPN for the A-Rod story. Ramirez and Braun were subjects of their stories in ESPN’s Biogenesis package, and they declined to comment as well.

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Rodriguez also admitted his own involvement to the investigators, but would continue to deny it publicly even after serving his 162-game suspension (all of the 2014 season) from MLB. While that admission will come as no surprise to anyone Rodriguez has previously admitted to and been suspended for PED use earlier in his career Fish lays out a multitude of eye-popping details from the federal documents of what went on during A-Rod’s Biogenesis days.

“He basically did everything he could to distract from his own behavior,” a Yankees source told Fish of Rodriguez, adding: “I mean, Alex is a complicated person. He had a lot of layers to him, and I think he’s remorseful, but he did some bad things to a lot of people.”

Rodriguez has been an ESPN analyst since 2018. The second season of the “KayRod Cast,” which airs on ESPN2 and stars Rodriguez and Yankees broadcaster Michael Kay, completed its scheduled run in August. Rodriguez is next scheduled to work for the network during the MLB wild-card playoffs next month. An ESPN spokesperson told The Times that the company has no comment on the report on Rodriguez.

Rodriguez also covers baseball for Fox Sports, which did not respond to The Times’ request for comment.

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