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According to a Boston Globe report, MLB opened an investigation into performance-enhancing drug use during the 2008 season after two security employees were fired for steroid use. Despite investigating a possible scandal, MLB apparently didn’t investigate enough. What did they miss?
Well, apparently one of the two laid off employees claimed to have exchanged steroids advice with David Ortiz’s friend and personal assistant. It doesn’t necessarily implicate Ortiz, but something fishy was definitely going on.
“I’m sure they were hoping I didn’t know anything,’’ said Jared Remy, one of the security staffers who lost his job. “It’s like they didn’t want to know. It’s like: Do we really want to know or do we just want it to go away?’’
Both former employees told investigators they knew nothing of steroid use by Red Sox players including Manny Ramirez and Ortiz, even though both tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs in 2003.
MLB started its investigation after the other security guard, Nicholas Alex Cyr, fell asleep at the wheel after driving home from the Beckett Bowl last July. State police found a quarter-full brown bottle of Anadrol, a powerful steroid. Once officials discovered he worked for the Red Sox, the investigation began. The main question (Where did these steroids come from?) was never asked, and never answered.
Instead of policing the problem, though, MLB cared more about its image. The Globe article explains it best:
But it also can be read – as it is by some specialists who study steroid abuse and the men who lost their jobs – as an indication that big-league baseball is focused more on its public image than on aggressively policing its players.
Major League Baseball defended its investigation as “thorough and detailed’’ and said that it led to further “investigative activities’’ that it would not disclose. The league would not say whether Ortiz or Ramírez were interviewed in the case.
“The contents of these interviews and the results of the investigation, like all department of investigations activities, are confidential,’’ MLB said in a statement.
Remy, the other employee, was interviewed in connection with the investigation. He claimed that major league officials didn’t ask much about his association with Ortiz’s trainer.
“They didn’t ask much at all; they wanted to make it disappear,’’ he said.
Remy claimed that he used to discuss steroid use with Ortiz’s salaried personal assistant, Felix Leopoldo Marquez Galice (known affectionately as Monga).
“He admitted taking steroids. We had conversations about steroids,’’ said Remy.
“We’d talk, ‘This one works for that. This one makes you bulky. This one makes you harder,’ ’’ Remy recalled.
Marquez’s lawyer, Thomas Kerner, disputed that account. “I have no idea on the credibility of Jared Remy, but my client has told me that he has no involvement in steroids.’’
So, what connection, if any, did these staffers have with David Ortiz, Manny Ramirez, and other players? Was David Ortiz’s friend and confidant a steroid user, despite claims he was not? So many questions, not many answers…
Reaction: What can we all learn from this? Major League Baseball is horribly embarrassed by the steroids scandal that currently grips the sport. They send out people to do a half-assed investigation just to see if there’s something wrong. Despite knowing little or nothing about the case, the Red Sox fired the employees for connection to steroids. Instead of investigating the problem further, the team and league just tried to make it go away.
In the sports world especially, where there’s smoke, there’s fire. In this case, we could have a raging inferno. We may never know…