This is what a baseball reporter looks like, i.e., a working man. This is not Michael S. Schmidt.
If it can still be called news, word comes from The New York Times’ Michael S. Schmidt today of two more names added to the list of those who allegedly tested positive for steroids in 2003. Today, Yankee fans will be happy to see Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz’ from the World Series Curse Breaking Red Sox. Curt Schilling haters can now sneer that his World Series ring was won with a needle. Unfortunately for Bosox haters and those hoping to read a credible story, Schmidt continues to base his allegations on discredited evidence. Like his Sammy Sosa story a few months back, Schmidt relies on the evidence thrown out of Federal court as inconclusive in the Barry Bonds case. If a Federal Judge threw the Bonds results out, why are results from the same batch of results now conclusive for The New York Times re Sosa, Manny, or Ortiz? They’re not, and one guesses the attorneys who fed Schmidt these stories, and Schmidt himself, hopes for an A-Rod style confession as vindication. If it’s not forthcoming from Sosa, Ortiz, or Manny, then Schmidt actually has some reporting to do, besides waiting for his phone to ring. As steroid fans will recall, at no time could the results said to belong to Bonds from this same batch of tests actually be proven to be Bonds’ results “ it needed corroboration from his trainer, Greg Anderson, who refused to talk. It’s why the Federal case against Bonds fell apart in February ’09, and exactly when the names of the 104 started to leak to the public “ ie, February ’09. Chasing after Selena Roberts’ A-Rod admission of PED use, Schmidt continues to play mouthpiece to lawyers familiar with the case who taint player reputations with No Credible Evidence. If I read Schmidt’s story correctly, he has not personally seen any evidence, shows no sign of making the link Federal prosecutors failed to make, and he has no other sources.
What’s getting so pathetic about The New York Times’ sporting coverage comes down to three current/former NYT staffers: Michael S. Schmidt, Murray Chass, and Selena Roberts. Chass’ “backne” fiasco re allegations of Mike Piazza and PEDs, and Schmidt’s threadbare accusations against Sammy Sosa, are equally ludicrous at this point. Roberts took heat for her anonymous sourcing, a standard if imperfect journalism practice, but guess what “ she’s the only one proven correct. She certainly beat the Times out on this story, and Schmidt obviously hopes to catch up and score the same kind of admissions but with much weaker sourcing. There’s a difference between using anonymous sources and letting them use you. We’ll see if Ortiz or Sosa ever confess, as A-Rod did with Roberts, and save Schmidt’s rep from that of “backne” level journalism. Again, as I’ve said before, it wouldn’t surprise me these days if my three-year-old tested positive for steroids, much less a Sosa or Ortiz. Still, Michael S. Schmidt is getting played here. He needs to actually report something or forever look like what he is today, a shill.
As Schmidt relates here, his story is based on nothing but the following:
Baseball first tested for steroids in 2003, and the results from that season were supposed to remain anonymous. But for reasons that have never been made clear, the results were never destroyed and the first batch of positives has come to be known among fans and people in baseball as œthe list. The information was later seized by federal agents investigating the distribution of performance-enhancing drugs to professional athletes, and the test results remain the subject of litigation between the baseball players union and the government.
Five others have been tied to positive tests from that year: Barry Bonds, Alex Rodriguez, Sammy Sosa, Jason Grimsley and David Segui. Bonds, baseball™s career home runs leader, was not on the original list, although federal agents seized his 2003 sample and had it retested. Those results showed the presence of steroids, according to court documents.
The information about Ramirez and Ortiz emerged through interviews with multiple lawyers and others connected to the pending litigation. The lawyers spoke anonymously because the testing information is under seal by a court order. The lawyers did not identify which drugs were detected.