Steroid admission just the beginning for A-Rod

BY Ken Rosenthal • August 26, 2009














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If A-Rod isn't on the back page, he's on Page Six. Al Tays looks back at how the slugger has courted controversy over the years. He wants to stay. The Braves want to keep him. But the financial situation in Atlanta could force Tom Glavine out, Ken Rosenthal says.



If Alex Rodriguez thinks this is over, he's nuts.

The best player in the game just admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs for three years — three years!

Sorry, I don't think too many people are going to react by saying, "Gee, Alex. Thanks for coming clean."

I can see federal agents summoning Rodriguez to testify under oath, wanting to know what Rodriguez knows. Who his dealers were. Which of his teammates used. Whether he was linked, in any way, to Barry Bonds or Roger Clemens.












More on the A-Rod steroid saga

Scandals: If A-Rod isn't on the back page, he's on Page Six. Al Tays looks back at how the slugger has courted controversy over the years.
Photos: Check out all the best shots of Alex Rodriguez through the years.
Video: Barack Obama reacts to the A-Rod steroid revelation.
Vote: Give us your thoughts on the A-Rod situation.
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  • Joba: 'We can count on' him| Jeter will wait to talk


  • I can see Jose Canseco, noted author and truth-teller, casting more aspersions on Rodriguez, mocking A-Rod's claim that he only juiced while a member of the Rangers from 2001 to 2003.

    I can see a whole lot of people asking a whole lot of questions, because there's no way to know whether A-Rod told the truth to ESPN's Peter Gammons. He certainly didn't when CBS' Katie Couric asked him about steroid use.

    Oh, A-Rod isn't going to be prosecuted. The federal investigators are after liars, not users. Rodriguez, as far as anyone knows, has not spoken under oath, unlike Bonds, Clemens and Miguel Tejada. The statute of limitations for his crime — and yes, it was a crime — expired after five years.

    A-Rod also isn't going to be dragged before Congress. Our trusted lawmakers displayed dubious priorities when they called the initial steroid hearings in 2005, and wouldn't dare pull such a stunt again with the nation's economy in shambles.

    But none of that means Rodriguez is in the clear.

    What happens if the feds put him under oath? What if he fails to tell them the entire truth in an effort to protect his case for the Hall of Fame? What if he becomes the next Bonds or Clemens?

    Rodriguez was a teammate of Clemens with the Yankees. He had a relationship with Bonds and for a time the two both used Scott Boras as their agent. Boras employs his own trainers and doctors. Maybe the feds will want to subpoena him, too.














    More on the A-Rod steroid saga
    A-Rod news
    Scandals
    More from Rosenthal
    Obama 'depressed' over A-Rod

    A-Rod admits to using steroids

    Congressman: No hearing

    Jeter will wait to discuss

    Yanks to A-Rod: Be honest
    If A-Rod isn't on the back page, he's on Page Six. Al Tays looks back at how the slugger has courted controversy over the years. He wants to stay. The Braves want to keep him. But the financial situation in Atlanta could force Tom Glavine out, Ken Rosenthal says.




    Under oath, Rodriguez would face pressure to squeal on his friends and fellow players and become even more of a pariah. Awful as that sounds, it would sure beat the alternative — potential prison time for lying under oath.

    Mark McGwire declined to speak to Congress in 2005 precisely because he feared being placed in such an uncomfortable position.

    "My lawyers have advised me that I cannot answer these questions without jeopardizing my friends, my family and myself," McGwire said.

    Rodriguez evidently believed the upside of trying to salvage his reputation was greater than the downside of any potential fallout from his ESPN interview.

    Well, by "coming clean," he has compromised the other 103 players who tested positive in '03, putting pressure on them to be just as forthcoming if their identities are revealed.

    But Rodriguez isn't worried about them, is he?

    Sorry, Rodriguez will not escape like Andy Pettitte, who confirmed the Mitchell Report's allegation that he used human growth hormone in a tell-all news conference last spring.

    Pettitte is well-liked. Rodriguez is widely regarded as insincere. Pettitte said he used HGH in 2002 and 2004 only to recover from injuries. Rodriguez said he used steroids because he felt pressure to succeed after signing his $252 million contract with the Rangers.

    Which begs the question: How much pressure does he feel after signing his $275 million deal with the Yankees, who play under scrutiny that he never experienced in Texas?

    Enough to cheat again?

    This isn't over. Not even close.



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