Just days before pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to spring training, Jesus Montero found his name in the news — and not in a good way.
Early Wednesday, the New York Daily News published a story saying that Montero — the projected starting catcher in 2013 for the Seattle Mariners — has been linked to the most recent baseball scandal involving performance enhancing drugs.
The Daily News reported that Montero’s name has come up in the records of BioGenesis, an anti-aging clinic in Miami, run by Anthony Bosch.
Montero joins a list of players linked to the clinic and Bosch that includes Melky Cabrera, Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Braun, Nelson Cruz, Gio Gonzalez, Cesar Carillo, Danny Valencia, Francisco Cervelli, Bartolo Colon and Yasmani Grandal.
The story does not offer any details about the allegation against Montero. However, it does point out that Montero shares the same representation — Brooklyn-based ACES, headed by Seth and Sam Levinson — as Cabrera, Gonzalez and Cruz. Montero was also teammates with Rodriguez and Cervelli on the New York Yankees before he was traded to Seattle in early 2012.
Montero is already in Peoria, Ariz., working out at the Mariners’ spring training complex.
In response to queries about Montero, the Mariners replied via email:
“The Seattle Mariners strongly support Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, and are disappointed any time we hear of any players potentially involved with banned substances.
“We are aware of the report which appeared today in the New York Daily News and have been in contact with Major League Baseball to discuss it.
“This matter is now in the hands of the Commissioner’s Office. At this time, with no additional information, we will have no further comment until that investigation has concluded, and all other questions should be directed to Major League Baseball.”
The Miami New Times broke the news of the alleged PED scandal at BioGenesis, reporting Jan. 29 that Bosch had provided synthetic testosterone and human growth hormone to Cabrera, Gonzalez, Cruz, Rodriguez and others.
Cabrera, Colon and Grandal all tested positive for performance enhancing drugs in 2012 and were suspended by major league baseball for 50 games.
On Tuesday, Yahoo! Sports broke the news that Braun, the 2011 National League MVP, appears in Bosch’s records. Though Braun’s name is not next to any of the PED orders, it is the second time in his career he has been linked to PED usage.
Last offseason, Braun was reported to have tested positive for PED usage during the 2011 playoffs. He appealed the test based on improper conduct in the chain-of-custody of his urine sample. Because the test administrator took the sample home over the weekend, the test result was overturned.
Braun, who graduated from the University of Miami, issued a statement after the most recent allegations about his relationship with Bosch, who has been linked to Miami strength coach Jimmy Goins.
“During the course of preparing for my successful appeal last year, my attorneys, who were previously familiar with Tony Bosch, used him as a consultant,” Braun said in the statement. “More specifically, he answered questions about T/E ratio and possibilities of tampering with samples. There was a dispute over compensation for Bosch’s work, which is why my lawyer and I are listed under ‘moneys owed’ and not on any other list. I have nothing to hide and have never had any other relationship with Bosch.
“I will fully cooperate with any inquiry into this matter.”Ryan Divish: 253-597-8483