As many of you saw yesterday, A-Fraud and others have been linked to a report coming out of Florida that investigates an anti-aging clinic that apparently sold PEDs (steroids) to a number of professional athletes. Among the list of those speculated to have been customers is Nelson Cruz.
This is what the report had to say about Cruz’s involvement:
Cruz, the Texas Rangers right fielder who hit 24 home runs in 2012, has not been disciplined for PED use by the league; however, he is listed on a July 2012 record, with a notation from Bosch that “need to call him, go Thur. to Texas, take meds from April 5-May 5, will owe him troches and … and will infuse them in May.” Troches, according to Bosch’s notes, are a type of drug lozenge that Miami New Times said includes testosterone.
Bosch is the gentleman who is being investigated as the “go-to” man at the clinic for PEDs. Basically, the report says that Bosch made notes about the athletes he was dealing with and then details what the notes said about the different athletes. As you can see above, the notes indicate that Bosch needed to call Cruz to set up a time to deliver some “meds” and that he owed Cruz some sort of drug lozenge that might include testosterone.
The notes about Cruz are not as clear cut as some of the others. For example, the notes on A-Fraud read:
The New Times report said Rodriguez’s name shows up 16 times in the records it reviewed. One record, which the newspaper reported was part of Bosch’s private notebooks, indicated Rodriguez paid Bosch $3,500 for “1.5/1.5 HGH (sports perf.), creams test., glut., MIC, supplement, sports perf. Diet.” HGH is banned by MLB.
This is significant because when A-Fraud came “clean” about his steroid use he claimed he had not used steroids since 2003. However, Bosch’s notations about A-Fraud begin in 2009 and continue through last season. So, if this evidence is true, then Rodriguez has been using PEDs since he admitted to their use a few years ago. This shouldn’t be surprising to anyone who follows baseball. It’s clear now that the Yankees got completely hosed when they signed Rodriguez to that ridiculous $275 million contract. As Ian O’Connor at ESPN argues, A-Fraud might be the biggest liar/cheat in the history of the game. For the record, I’m absolutely giddy that this is happening to A-Rod and it is so delightful that it’s also happening to the yankees.
But, back to Nelson Cruz. I guess if these allegations are true we shouldn’t be surprised. However, as Ranger fans we might want to ask Cruz why he appeared to have quit using the PEDs last season. I mean, if you’re going to use them, at least hit better than .260 with 24 homeruns. You play in a homerun friendly park for goodness sakes. Cruz struck out 140 times. I don’t think PEDs can help when you fail to make contact at all.
Right now it doesn’t look like any suspensions are coming out of this because no one has failed a drug test. And the player’s union would fight tooth and nail to keep anyone from being suspended based on a newspaper investigation. But, it does raise doubts about Cruz, and he’s going to have to deal with those doubts all season, particularly when dealing with the press and with fans. If for some reason he does get suspended, I suppose the Rangers could move Moreland to the outfield and let Mike Olt swap out with Berkman at 1B and DH.
We will see.