A-Rod will 'comment when appropriate' on Biogenesis
Yankees rehabbing third baseman issues statement on report regarding Bosch
TAMPA, Fla. -- Alex Rodriguez left the Yankees' Minor League complex Thursday afternoon without speaking to reporters, but he issued a statement to break his silence regarding ESPN's recent report about a possible 100-game suspension for his alleged connection to Biogenesis and Anthony Bosch.
"Myself and others are being mentioned in a media report before the process is even concluded," Rodriguez said in a statement released through a spokesperson. "I would hope this thing would follow the guidelines of our Basic Agreement. I will monitor the situation and comment when appropriate.
"As I have said previously, I am working out every day to get back on the field and help the Yankees win a championship. I am down here doing my job and working hard and will continue to do so until I'm back playing."
Earlier this week, ESPN's "Outside the Lines" reported that Bosch, founder of the now-shuttered Miami-area Biogenesis anti-aging clinic accused of supplying performance-enhancing substances to several high-profile players, including Rodriguez, has agreed to cooperate with Major League Baseball's investigation.
Rodriguez, who is working his way back from offseason hip surgery, is the most recognizable name associated with the Biogenesis clinic and one of many who Major League Baseball may seek to suspend for his connection to Bosch. It's been reported that Rodriguez and Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun could face 100-game suspensions -- the penalty for a second offense regarding performance-enhancing substances -- for their alleged involvement with Biogenesis.
The Yankees have said Rodriguez could return to their lineup at full health at some point after the All-Star break. He's been taking batting practice and fielding grounders in Florida, but there is no specific timetable for his recovery. In light of the recent reports, Rodriguez is now facing even more questions about when he'll be able to get back on the field for the Yankees.
Manager Joe Girardi said before the Yankees' game on Thursday night in Seattle that Rodriguez is closer to returning than Derek Jeter. The Yankees' captain is also on the 60-day disabled list, recovering from a fractured left ankle.
"He's further ahead of Derek, I think. I mean, we've said both of them after the All-Star break, and Derek really hasn't done any baseball activity yet. And we're at June 6," Girardi said. "So I'm not sure, but I feel like he is. [Rodriguez] seems to be further ahead right now."
Girardi said he had sent a text message to Rodriguez in the past couple days "to see how his recovery was doing -- as I do once a week, twice a week, to see how he's doing. And he's doing OK."
"I mean, he's moving more side to side when it comes to ground balls, which is a good sign," Girardi said. "For a long time there, they were just right at him. But he's moving well side to side, so obviously he's feeling more comfortable.
"He's taking BP, taking ground balls. I'm not sure at what percent he is running, but he is running, too."
Rodriguez was first connected to Biogenesis in January, when a Miami New Times report said his full name or nicknames appeared in documents obtained from a former employee of Bosch. Rodriguez has said through a spokesperson that the documents in question are "not legitimate" and that he has never been advised or treated by Bosch.
Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli has also been reported to have a connection to Biogenesis. Cervelli, in Tampa as he rehabs his fractured right hand, offered no comment Thursday when asked about the latest news involving Bosch's cooperation with MLB and the possible suspensions that could come down as a result.
"I got nothing," Cervelli said.