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SI's bombshell: A-Rod tested positive for steroids

Just when you thought things couldn't get any worse for A-Rod, they do. SI. publishes an explosive story.

In 2003, when he won the American League home run title and the AL Most Valuable Player award as a shortstop for the Texas Rangers, Alex Rodriguez tested positive for two anabolic steroids, four sources have independently told Sports Illustrated.

Rodriguez's name appears on a list of 104 players who tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball's '03 survey testing, SI's sources say. As part of a joint agreement with the MLB Players Association, the testing was conducted to determine if it was necessary to impose mandatory random drug testing across the major leagues in 2004.

When approached by an SI reporter on Thursday at a gym in Miami, Rodriguez declined to discuss his 2003 test results. "You'll have to talk to the union," said Rodriguez, the Yankees' third baseman since his trade to New York in February 2004. When asked if there was an explanation for his positive test, he said, "I'm not saying anything."

Phone messages left by SI for players' union executive director Donald Fehr were not returned.

Wow, I didn't see this coming. I'm stunned. I wake up late on Saturday and get the phone call.  Just as the pieces were beginning to come together for the 2009 Yankee season, this explodes on  the scene.

PAer jeter2jeter writes:

For a guy that's worried so much about public perception, how badly do you think this is going to end up ruining his confidence. Even if this rumor turns out to be untrue, there will be an untold amount of controversy, innuendo, heckling, and etc. for A-Rod. (I guess the nickname A-Fraud has a different meaning) I bet the Yanks now wish the only media headache they have to deal with is Manny and Joe Torre. Let's see what happens.

And we thought spring training was going to get off to a rocky start for ARod because of Torre's book, but this makes that look like chump change. The Yankee fans will crucify him if he can't defend himself. Is this the straw that breaks the Camel's back?

The NY Times has this:

At various moments, including a December 2007 interview on CBS’s "60 Minutes" with Katie Couric, he flatly denied that he had ever used steroids or human growth hormone.

"For the record, have you ever used steroids, human growth hormone or any other performance-enhancing substance?" Couric asked.

"No," Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez said he never felt tempted to use the substances.

"You never felt like, ‘This guy’s doing it, maybe I should look into this, too? He’s getting better numbers, playing better ball,’" Couric asked.

Just a year ago, Rodriguez was forced to confront accusations from José Canseco that he had used steroids. In Canseco’s second book on steroids in baseball, "Vindicated," Canseco wrote that in the late 1990’s he introduced Rodriguez to a trainer he identified as Max who was a "fan of steroids." Canseco said that Max, later told him that Rodriguez had "signed on."

Rodriguez denied Canseco’s assertions.