Big story in the Times today detailing the sordid case against Alex Rodriguez:
In the nine months since Mr. Rodriguez and more than a dozen other players were linked to a South Florida anti-aging clinic that is believed to have distributed banned substances to professional athletes, baseball officials and the Yankee third baseman have engaged in a cloak-and-dagger struggle surpassing anything the sport has seen. The extraordinary investigative tactics, playing out in multiple locations, reflect Major League Baseball’s resolve to prove one of its stars cheated, and that player’s determination to discredit baseball officials.
Witnesses for both sides in the pending arbitration proceedings claim to have been harassed and threatened. Some were paid tens of thousands of dollars for their cooperation. One said she became intimately involved with an investigator on the case. And some witness accounts have shifted, leaving each side scrambling to defend the sometimes inconsistent stories provided by former employees and associates of the now-defunct clinic, Biogenesis of America.
The dispute — which involves lawsuits in Florida and in New York, and a battle over grand jury transcripts in Buffalo — has become so extensive that Major League Baseball has once again turned to its go-to consultant for complicated problems, the former senator George J. Mitchell, whose law firm is assisting with the growing caseload.
These details have been gleaned from dozens of interviews conducted by The New York Times over several months with witnesses, current and former law enforcement officials and lawyers involved in all sides of the dispute, and from documents obtained by The Times relating to M.L.B.’s case against Mr. Rodriguez, as well as police reports and lawsuits. Several witnesses and lawyers insisted on anonymity when discussing any aspect of the case because they have been ordered not to speak about the matter by the independent arbitrator who is hearing Mr. Rodriguez’s appeal of his 211-game doping suspension stemming from the Florida clinic investigation.
[Photo Credit: Umar Abbasi]