Red Sox slugger David Ortiz said he has worked with controversial trainer Angel Presinal, who is in the news for his association with Alex Rodriguez, and that many Dominican players know Presinal well.
"All I know is that we all worked with him as a group of guys that wanted to be ready in spring training and that's about it," Ortiz told reporters at the Red Sox's complex in Fort Myers, Fla. "He's one of the guys that trained everybody."
Presinal spent much of the 2007 season with A-Rod, as first reported by the Daily News, casting a further shadow on the Yankees' disgraced third baseman. Major League Baseball banned Presinal from its clubhouses after a 2001 incident in which a bag full of steroids and needles was discovered at a Toronto airport and traced to Presinal's friend Juan Gonzalez.
Ortiz said he isn't worried about his name being linked with those who have used illegal performance-enhancing drugs.
"You are the owner of your own decisions," Boston's designated hitter said. "It's sad that he's involved in things like this, but you have to be careful."
Rob Crawford, an elementary school administrator in the Boston area who is the vice president of "Red Sox Nation," said yesterday, "We could take it if any other Red Sox players were on the [2003 list of 104 players who failed the survey test]. But if David Ortiz was on it, that would suck all of the wind out of us."
This story was supplemented with an Associated Press report.