Major League Baseball ignored repeated warnings that records it sought in the Alex Rodriguez Biogenesis scandal had been stolen and were not to be purchased, according to Florida investigators and an April police report obtained by Newsday.
MLB investigators bought Biogenesis records anyway, and a Boca Raton police detective investigating the theft noted that baseball officials neglected to notify law enforcement that they had done so for nearly eight months, the newspaper reported.
The police report, which has not been previously publicized, details how a detective's investigation into the burglary of documents from a car outside a strip-mall tanning salon turned into an examination of whether MLB officials broke the law when they paid for records showing players had used performance-enhancing drugs. The investigation ended April 11 with no criminal charges filed against anyone except Reginald St. Fleur, a salon employee arrested months earlier after police said his DNA was found on the burglarized vehicle.
However, Det. Terrence Payne wrote in his report there was also "evidence of involvement" by "several MLB investigators" and three other men — two brothers from Long Island and a felon whom MLB paid $125,000 in exchange for the stolen records. Payne's report is the latest in a series of unflattering revelations about MLB's aggressive pursuit of evidence that Yankees star Rodriguez and other players used performance-enhancing drugs provided by Anthony Bosch, the founder of the unlicensed Coral Gables antiaging clinic Biogenesis.
In the face of legal challenges and criticism from Rodriguez and others about how they handled the investigation, baseball officials have firmly denied that they knowingly bought stolen records. "We have stated repeatedly that we had no knowledge that the documents we purchased were stolen," MLB senior vice president of public relations Pat Courtney told Newsday on Friday.
Sandra Boonenberg, a spokeswoman for the Boca Raton Police Department, stated unequivocally that a Florida investigator "warned MLB not to purchase the documents" and that the investigator told their detective about that conversation "before the documents were purchased" by MLB.
Sabathia to DL: Yankees LHP CC Sabathia was placed on the 15-day DL with inflammation in his right knee. Sabathia, 33, is 3-4 with a 5.28 ERA. New York is already minus two injured starters, RHPs Ivan Nova (season-ending elbow surgery) and Michael Pineda (back).
BREWERS: 3B Aramis Ramirez appears headed to the DL with a strained left hamstring.
CUBS: RH reliever Carlos Marmol, an 8.10 ERA in 15 games, was designated for assignment.
NATIONALS: 1B Adam LaRoche went on the 15-day DL with a strained quadriceps muscle.
ORIOLES: 1B Chris Davis was activated from the DL. C Matt Wieters was placed on the DL with an elbow strain.