ANAHEIM, Calif. – Cubs manager Dale Sveum has been given no indications that the Biogenesis scandal will directly impact his team and implicate any of his players.
“Not that I heard of,” Sveum said Wednesday at Angel Stadium. “I’m sure it would have been out there if there was. It doesn’t look like they’re holding any names back.”
The ESPN report went viral on Tuesday night, and Cubs players looked at the story on their iPhones inside the visiting clubhouse before heading out for batting practice. The Cubs were unscathed over the winter when the Miami New Times released its initial investigation into this ring of performance-enhancing drugs.
[HARDBALL TALK: Making sense of the Biogenesis scandal]
ESPN reported Major League Baseball has gained cooperation from Biogenesis founder Tony Bosch and will be seeking to suspend around 20 players for their involvement with the South Florida clinic, including two of the game’s biggest stars: Alex Rodriguez and Ryan Braun.
Michael Weiner, the union’s executive director, issued a statement saying the players association has been in regular contact with the commissioner’s office – as well as a warning to not rush to judgment.
“They are in the process of interviewing players and every player has been or will be represented by an attorney from the players association,” Weiner said. “The commissioner’s office has assured us that no decisions regarding discipline have been made or will be made until those interviews are completed. It would be unfortunate if anyone prejudged those investigations.
“The players association has every interest in both defending the rights of players and in defending the integrity of our joint program. We trust that the commissioner’s office shares these interests.”
[BIG LEAGUE STEW: Biogenesis clinic founder Bosch willing to cooperate with MLB]
Even with Braun, the Milwaukee Brewers are a last-place team and profiling like sellers at the trade deadline. The New York Yankees have survived the loss of Rodriguez, who’s been on the disabled list while recovering from offseason hip surgery.
But there are other names under suspicion that if suspended could shift the balance of power and shape division races, like Oakland A’s pitcher Bartolo Colon, Detroit Tigers shortstop Jhonny Peralta, Texas Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz and Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Melky Cabrera.
“You’re going to deal with some very impact players,” Sveum said. “The Melky Cabreras and these guys are such impact players that when they’re out of the lineup it changes those teams completely around.”