Monday, March 18, 2013

MLB Should Have Known Of 'Anti-Aging' Scam

The recent revelations about professional baseball players obtaining performance-enhancing drugs from bogus "anti-aging" and "wellness" clinics in Florida was portrayed by some as something of a 'new' phenomenon. Once the news broke, MLB seemed to take it seriously and proceeded with its own investigation. Moreover, they are pressuring various media sources to give them information on the scandal. But even a cursory examination of the MLB-commissioned Mitchell Reportproduced over five years ago—showed that the sport was warned of this issue even then. In the "Summary and Recommendations" section at the front of the report, we find the following: "Separately, a number of players reportedly purchased human growth hormone through “anti-aging” centers using dubious prescriptions written by physicians who never examined, or even met, the customers for whom they were writing prescriptions." Interesting, isn't it? Another interesting sidelight of the Mitchell Report was a 2000 incident involving then-Red Sox player Manny Alexander. Massachusetts State Police stopped a vehicle owned by Alexander (and loaned to some Red Sox employees). Steroids (addressed to Alexander) and syringes were found in the car. After negotiations with the union and a belated test, no charges were ever filed against Alexander. In some quarters, George Mitchell is criticized for not calling out Red Sox connections on this issue because of his relationship with the Boston owners. However, the Alexander disclosure clearly contradicts this view.