‘L.A. Times’ Breaks Ramirez Drugs-Suspension Story

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By: Joe Strupp

The Los Angeles Times this morning broke the news of star outfielder Manny Ramirez testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs and being suspended for 50 games.

A story on the paper’s Web site by by Bill Shaikin and Dylan Hernandez revealed the test results and suspension, which are expected to be officially announced later today. Ramirez’s suspension is effective tonight.

“The suspension will cost Ramirez $7.7 million, or roughly 31% of his $25 million salary. Players in violation of baseball’s drug policy are not paid during suspensions,” the story said. “Ramirez is expected to attribute the test results to medication received from a doctor for a personal medical issue, according to a source familiar with matter but not authorized to speak publicly.”

It adds that “Ramirez did not appear in the clubhouse after the Dodgers’ 10-3 victory over the Washington Nationals Wednesday night. After the game, Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti and Manager Joe Torre said they were unaware of any failed test or pending suspension.”

The story did not indicate how the reporters found out about the failed test. Both were unreachable for comment thus far today.

The story noted that in an appearance at USC last month, Jose Canseco said Ramirez’s name “is most likely, 90%” on a list of 104 players that failed a drug test in 2003, adding that Ramirez laughed when Times columnist Kurt Streeter relayed Canseco’s allegation to him.

“I got no comment, nothing to say about that,” Ramirez told Streeter. “What can I say? I don’t even know the guy.”

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