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Yankees brace for arrival of Alex Rodriguez and media frenzy surrounding his admitted use of performance-enhancing drugs

In Yankee camp, Monday's workout was the calm before the storm.

The club is bracing for Tuesday's much-anticipated arrival of All-Star third baseman Alex Rodriguez, as well as the ensuing media frenzy that will swirl around his expected news conference to discuss his use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Rodriguez, baseball's highest-paid and most high-profile player, admitted in an ESPN interview last week that he used a banned substance while in Texas from 2001-2003, a bombshell broke a couple days earlier by Sports Illustrated's web site, SI.com.

But when Rodriguez likely meets the press Tuesday at the Yankees spring training complex in Tampa at 1:30 p.m., he'll be surrounded by around 200 writers, photographers and TV cameras from all over the country. It'll be a similar event to one staged last spring for pitcher Andy Pettitte, who was candid and emotional in admitting he used human growth hormone.

Manager Joe Girardi said he'll be there to support Rodriguez, and some teammates will join him. The New York Post first reported Pettitte, Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada and Mariano Rivera also plan to attend.

It's not known how candid Rodriguez will be — he was vague in details of his use of banned substances in his ESPN interview. But Girardi has called it an important step in the "healing process," as his club hopes to shift the focus back to baseball.

"I want to see him get through this and all of us get through this and get to what we love to do and that is play," Girardi said.

Yankees brace for arrival of Alex Rodriguez and media frenzy surrounding his admitted use of performance-enhancing drugs 02/16/09 [Last modified: Monday, February 16, 2009 12:50pm]

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