Joe Tacopina: Evidence 'overwhelming' that Alex Rodriguez took only nutritional supplements
Alex Rodriguez took only nutritional supplements from Biogenesis founder Anthony Bosch, attorney Joe Tacopina said Friday on WFAN's morning radio show with Boomer Esiason and Craig Carton.
Rodriguez was suspended for 211 games by Major League Baseball last August when its investigation concluded that the Yankees third baseman and other players had received performance-enhancing drugs from Bosch. Rodriguez appealed the punishment and is awaiting an arbitrator's decision.
"Alex Rodriguez was adamant that he had to be 100 percent clean as far as PEDs," Tacopina said in the interview. "I will tell you that the evidence is overwhelming that he went out of his way to make sure he was taking [legal] nutritional supplements. Overwhelming. Two, three years of emails that we have. Overwhelming."
Tacopina held out the possibility that any supplement could be something other than advertised, saying: "Listen, if I buy a supplement and at some point that's a bad product that I don't know about, or I go to a doctor who says, 'Try this, it's not a banned substance, it's legal' and there's a bad substance in there, of course that's a possibility. But that's not what our defense is. If it happened, it happened unbeknownst to Alex."
Tacopina added that if Rodriguez had taken an illegal substance, "it would defy science then, because Alex would be either the luckiest man in the world or a scientific freak. His testing results show he did not take PEDs.''
Rodriguez had no idea that Bosch may have engaged in selling illegal substances, Tacopina said. "There was a conversation that Tony Bosch had with many, many people where he held himself out as a nutritional guru," the attorney said. "We have evidence that Tony Bosch was discussing with others how to do nutritional supplementation, legal supplements. Nothing to do with PEDs with many other people. The evidence is pretty clear from where I stand that that's what it was . . . What it became when Tony Bosch needed a get-out-of-jail-free card and needed Major League Baseball to back him."
Bosch's spokesman had no immediate comment on Tacopina's remarks.
Arbitrator Fredric Horowitz is not likely to make his decision before the new year, said Jordan Siev, another of Rodriguez's attorneys. Post-hearing briefs will be filed by attorneys for Rodriguez and MLB on Dec. 11 and responses to those briefs are due Dec. 21.
"It is possible [Horowitz] will decide it promptly thereafter, before Christmas," Siev said. "My guess is he decides it the first week or second week of January. But that's speculation."
It is common practice, Siev said, for the arbitrator to email his decision to both sides.
"I firmly believe Alex should get a goose egg here, but do I think Fred would have the courage of his convictions to give a goose egg?" Siev said. "I'd like to think so. But I can't imagine Alex walks out of there with a zero. But I think based on the evidence, that's exactly what should happen here."