Alex Rodriguez admits to Peter Gammons on ESPN that he
used steroids from 2001-2003.
Having to stop due to the emotion, and voice cracking, Alex Rodriguez admitted on ESPN today of using steroids from 2001-2003 while with the Texas Rangers.
"When I arrived in Texas in 2001, I felt an enormous amount of pressure, felt all the weight of the world on top of me to perform, and perform at a high level every day," Rodriguez told ESPN's Peter Gammons in an interview in Miami Beach, Fla. An extended interview will air on SportsCenter at 6 p.m. ET.
"Back then, [baseball] was a different culture," Rodriguez said. "It was very loose. I was young, I was stupid, I was naĂŻve. I wanted to prove to everyone that I was worth being one of the greatest players of all time.
"I did take a banned substance. For that, I am very sorry and deeply regretful."
The story that A-Rod used steroids in 2003 surfaced when SI.com broke the story over the weekend. The results of a collectively bargained â€śsurvey testâ€ť in 2003 to determine whether a mandatory testing program in 2004 would commence in MLB is reportedly where the positive test results on Rodriguez came from. Those results were never to be made public, and have been sealed by a judge as part of the ongoing BALCO investigation. It is uncertain whether any charges might be filed by the judge in the case over the leaked information.
Rodriguezâ€™s admission to using PEDs comes after saying otherwise in an interview with Katie Couric on 60 Minutes in December of 2007.
"For the record, have you ever used steroids, human growth hormone or any other performance-enhancing substance?" Couric asked.
"No," Rodriguez replied.
Asked if he had ever been tempted to use any of those things, Rodriguez told Couric, "No."
"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.
"I've never felt overmatched on the baseball field. I've always been a very strong, dominant position. And I felt that if I did my work as I've done since I was, you know, a rookie back in Seattle, I didn't have a problem competing at any level. So, no," he replied.
Question will now be, if he was â€śyoung, was stupid, and was naĂŻveâ€ť for using PEDs from 2001-2003, why go on national television in 2007 in the first place? Questions will also surround whether he really did stop using PEDs after 2003. And lastly, how does all of this affect his Hall of Fame chances?
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He is contributor to Baseball Prospectus, and is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network.
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