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Thread: Bonds reportedly failed amphetamine test

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    That's all folks! Unklescott's Avatar
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    Bonds reportedly failed amphetamine test

    I thought the timing of this was interesting as it came out right after the HOF voting.
    By JANIE McCAULEY, AP Sports Writer 25 minutes ago
    SAN FRANCISCO - Barry Bonds' reported positive test for amphetamines last season could be another snag in contract negotiations with the
    San Francisco Giants. News of the failed test, reported Thursday in the Daily News, is the latest in a long list of allegations surrounding the slugger, who will face more questions this season about whether he used performance-enhancing drugs in his pursuit of Hank Aaron's home run record.

    According to the report, Bonds failed an amphetamines test in 2006, then blamed it on a teammate. The New York City newspaper reported that when first informed of the positive result, Bonds attributed it to a substance he had taken from utilityman Mark Sweeney's locker.

    Just when everybody thought the Giants were getting along well for a change.

    Bonds is set to begin his 15th season with the Giants only 22 home runs shy of passing Aaron's career record of 755. He and San Francisco reached a preliminary agreement on a $16 million, one-year contract Dec. 7, the final day of baseball's winter meetings. But the seven-time NL MVP still hasn't signed the deal or taken the mandatory physical that is part of the process.

    The sides have been working to finalize complicated language in the contract that concerns the left fielder's compliance with team rules, as well as what would happen if he were to be indicted or have other legal troubles.

    Giants owner Peter Magowan and executive vice president Larry Baer did not return calls for comment Thursday, but the team released a statement on the situation. Bonds' agent, Jeff Borris, and Sweeney also did not return messages. Borris repeatedly has declined to comment on specifics of the negotiations.

    "Last night was the first time we heard of this recent accusation against Barry Bonds," the Giants said in the statement. "Under Major League Baseball's collective bargaining agreement with the Major League Baseball Players Association, clubs are not notified after a player receives a first positive test for amphetamines.

    "The San Francisco Giants are strongly opposed to the use of performance-enhancing substances, including stimulants, by major league players. Major League Baseball has a strong policy in place to deal with the issue of performance-enhancing substances. The Giants will continue to be supportive of baseball's efforts in this area."

    Rob Manfred, baseball's executive vice president for labor relations, refused comment, according to spokesman Rich Levin.

    "I don't comment on the drug program, and I've never heard Barry Bonds blame anybody for anything," Gene Orza, the union's chief operating officer, said in an e-mail to The AP.

    San Francisco's brass and fan base long have stood by Bonds through his off-the-field problems and injuries. So have his teammates, deciding in spring training last year to support him every step of the way.

    "There are so many substances out there right now you don't know what you should take or what you should not," Giants shortstop Omar Vizquel said Thursday. "Right now, I'm afraid to take vitamins for the same reason. You don't know what's going to be positive or what's going to be negative. The best way for players is to stay natural. Anything with chemicals in it can be bad. I know what I do. I don't know what the other guys do, and I don't really care.

    "I tell the younger guys, but you don't need to be telling Barry Bonds and Mark Sweeney what they should take or what they should not."

    There's a long history of amphetamines or speed and more commonly called greenies in the baseball world fueling generations of baseball players. Many turned to the stimulants for a way to get pepped up when their bodies couldn't do so on their own during a long season. The pills, widely used even until recently, helped with energy for day games following night games and other times when players were short on sleep, such as after a long cross-country flight.

    Baseball banned the uppers for the first time starting last season. A player is not identified until after failing two amphetamines tests, which also results in a 25-game suspension. The first failed steroids test, by comparison, is a 50-game suspension.

    A first amphetamines offense, however, does require six additional drug tests over the following six months.

    Bonds did not appeal the positive test, according to the Daily News, which said Sweeney learned of Bonds' positive test from Orza. The newspaper reported Orza told Sweeney he should remove any troublesome substances from his locker and should not share said substances. Sweeney then said there was nothing of concern in his locker.

    Sweeney's agent, Barry Axelrod, told The Associated Press on Thursday that his client received a call informing him that his name had come up in regard to the testing.

    "He responded at that time ... he did not give anything to anybody and he doesn't have anything illegal," Axelrod said. "That was the end of it, as far as we were concerned, until yesterday. We thought it was just a sort of procedural thing."

    Bonds, who has denied using steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs, long has been under the microscope. A federal grand jury is investigating whether he perjured himself when he testified in 2003 in the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative steroid distribution case that he hadn't knowingly taken any performance-enhancing drugs. He told that 2003 grand jury he believed his trainer, Greg Anderson, had given him flaxseed oil and arthritic balm, not steroids.

    Bonds, who's coming off October surgery on his troublesome left elbow, played regularly in 2006 130 games even appearing in day games that followed night games, which he typically used to sit out. He trimmed up after carrying extra weight early in the year and seemed to bounce back well from minor injuries.

    After missing all but 14 games in 2005 following three operations on his right knee, Bonds batted .270 with 26 homers and 77 RBIs in 367 at-bats in 2006. He passed Babe Ruth to move into second place on the career home run list May 28.

    Bonds has spent 14 of his 21 big league seasons with San Francisco and helped the Giants draw 3 million fans in all seven seasons at their waterfront ballpark. The club is counting on him to be part of the hype leading up to its hosting of the All-Star game in July.

    Bonds said he noticed an improved vibe in the clubhouse last season with the additions of Steve Finley, Sweeney and Todd Greene. The slugger was more sociable too, playing cards or chess with his teammates or trainers before games and even making a rare appearance in the team photo.

    Bonds and Sweeney appeared to be good friends, with Sweeney speaking to the slugger by phone recently this offseason.

    "This year we had the best chemistry on the team. I felt like the team was clicking," Vizquel said. "It's sad a stupid instance like this might rupture something that was going pretty good. I don't think the players will turn on each other. We are a veteran team. We should know what (substance) is good and what is bad."
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070111/...s_amphetamines

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    Staying Afloat speedbump's Avatar
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    Bonds attributed it to a substance he had taken from utilityman Mark Sweeney's locker.
    You've got to be kidding me. A guy like Bonds- a big time ball player, already under the microscope- takes something from another person's locker?

    This guy is screwed and I hope he fails another test. I hope he gets the game suspension and fails to break the HR record.
    You got to cry without weeping. Talk without speaking. Scream without raising your voice.- U2

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    That's all folks! Unklescott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by speedbump;2202349;
    This guy is screwed and I hope he fails another test. I hope he gets the game suspension and fails to break the HR record.
    I'm glad to see I'm not the only one that feels that way. He's a pompous ass who thinks he's above the law.

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    Endlessly ShrinkingViolet's Avatar
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    Nice to try to take someone else down with your sorry arse, too.

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    FORT Fogey Cornedbeef's Avatar
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    To blame sombody else for your drug habits is just plain wrong.

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    That's all folks! Unklescott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cornedbeef;2202391;
    To blame sombody else for your drug habits is just plain wrong.
    Now Bonds denys taking anything from Sweeney's locker but doesn't deny the aphetamines charge.
    Barry Bonds comes to teammate's defense

    By JANIE McCAULEY, AP Sports Writer2 hours, 46 minutes ago

    Barry Bonds said he did not get amphetamines from teammate Mark Sweeney, but did not deny a report Thursday saying he tested positive for the drugs last season. According to a story in the New York Daily News, the San Francisco slugger failed an amphetamines test in 2006. The newspaper reported that when first informed of the positive result, Bonds attributed it to a substance he had taken from Sweeney's locker.

    Thursday, Bonds did not deny that but did apologize to Sweeney.

    "He is both my teammate and my friend," Bonds said in a statement. "He did not give me anything whatsoever and has nothing to do with this matter, contrary to recent reports.

    "I want to express my deepest apologies especially to Mark and his family as well as my other teammates, the San Francisco Giants organization and the fans," he said.

    That's all the Giants star, shadowed by steroids allegations and only 22 home runs from breaking Hank Aaron's career home run record, said about the alleged positive drug test. Bonds has steadfastly denied used performance-enhancing drugs.

    "Obviously, we're pleased that Barry has straightened this out," said Sweeney's agent, Barry Axelrod.

    Bonds' reported positive test could be another snag in contract negotiations with the Giants. The sides reached a preliminary agreement on a $16 million, one-year contract Dec. 7, but the seven-time NL MVP still hasn't signed the deal or taken the mandatory physical that is part of the process.

    The sides have been working to finalize complicated language in the contract that concerns the left fielder's compliance with team rules, as well as what would happen if he were to be indicted or have other legal troubles.

    "Last night was the first time we heard of this recent accusation against Barry Bonds," the Giants said in the statement. "Under Major League Baseball's collective bargaining agreement with the Major League Baseball Players Association, clubs are not notified after a player receives a first positive test for amphetamines."

    Rob Manfred, baseball's executive vice president for labor relations, refused comment, according to spokesman Rich Levin.

    "I don't comment on the drug program, and I've never heard Barry Bonds blame anybody for anything," Gene Orza, the union's chief operating officer, said in an e-mail to The Associated Press.

    San Francisco's front office and fan base long have stood by Bonds through his off-the-field problems and injuries. So have his teammates, deciding in spring training last year to support him every step of the way.

    "There are so many substances out there right now you don't know what you should take or what you should not," Giants shortstop Omar Vizquel said Thursday. "Right now, I'm afraid to take vitamins for the same reason. You don't know what's going to be positive or what's going to be negative. The best way for players is to stay natural. Anything with chemicals in it can be bad. I know what I do. I don't know what the other guys do, and I don't really care.

    "I tell the younger guys, but you don't need to be telling Barry Bonds and Mark Sweeney what they should take or what they should not."

    There's a long history of amphetamines or speed and more commonly called "greenies" in the baseball world fueling generations of baseball players. Many turned to the stimulants for a way to get pepped up when their bodies couldn't do so on their own during a long season.

    The pills, widely used even until recently, helped with energy for day games following night games and other times when players were short on sleep, such as after a long cross-country flight.

    Baseball banned the uppers for the first time starting last season. A player is not identified until after failing two amphetamines tests, which also results in a 25-game suspension. The first failed steroids test, by comparison, is a 50-game suspension.

    A first amphetamines offense, however, does require six additional drug tests over the following six months.

    Baseball commissioner Bud Selig wouldn't address the report directly.

    "Amphetamines have been around for seven or eight decades and this is the first time on the advice of doctors, trainers and everybody else that we dealt with it," he said. "We banned amphetamines and that's very significant and we're going to continue to monitor it all very closely."

    Selig did say management and the union discussed the report Thursday."

    "I think maybe they have some suspicion on how it leaked out," he said.

    Bonds did not appeal the positive test, according to the Daily News, which said Sweeney learned of Bonds' positive test from Orza. The newspaper reported Orza told Sweeney he should remove any troublesome substances from his locker and should not share said substances. Sweeney then said there was nothing of concern in his locker.

    Before Bonds' statement, Axelrod told the AP that his client received a call informing him that his name had come up in regard to the testing.

    "He responded at that time ... he did not give anything to anybody and he doesn't have anything illegal," Axelrod said. "That was the end of it, as far as we were concerned, until yesterday. We thought it was just a sort of procedural thing."

    A federal grand jury is investigating whether Bonds perjured himself when he testified in 2003 in the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative steroid distribution case that he hadn't knowingly taken any performance-enhancing drugs. He told that 2003 grand jury he believed his trainer, Greg Anderson, had given him flaxseed oil and arthritic balm, not steroids.

    Bonds, who's coming off October surgery on his troublesome left elbow, played regularly in 2006.

    After missing all but 14 games in 2005 following three operations on his right knee, Bonds batted .270 with 26 homers and 77 RBIs in 130 games last year. He passed Babe Ruth to move into second place on the career home run list May 28.

    Bonds has spent 14 of his 21 big league seasons with San Francisco and helped the Giants draw 3 million fans in all seven seasons in their waterfront ballpark. The team is counting on him to be part of the hype leading up to its hosting of the All-Star game in July.

    Bonds said he noticed an improved vibe in the clubhouse last season with the additions of Steve Finley, Sweeney and Todd Greene. The slugger was more sociable too, playing cards or chess with his teammates or trainers before games and even making a rare appearance in the team photo.

    Bonds and Sweeney appeared to be good friends, with Sweeney speaking to the slugger by phone recently this offseason.

    "This year we had the best chemistry on the team. I felt like the team was clicking," Vizquel said. "It's sad a stupid instance like this might rupture something that was going pretty good. I don't think the players will turn on each other. We are a veteran team. We should know what (substance) is good and what is bad."
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070112/...s_amphetamines

  7. #7
    FORT Fogey Leftcoaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by speedbump;2202349;
    You've got to be kidding me. A guy like Bonds- a big time ball player, already under the microscope- takes something from another person's locker?
    I didn't go beyond that point in the story.

    That became the story for me.

    Both the generalized projected image of him rooting through lockers assigned to others, and the specifically unavoidable 'Hmm, whats *snort* this?' image relating to Curious Bonds' consumer based slathering/spraying/inbibing/ingesting/injecting testing of items of interest.

    Then there is the question of how declaring in effect that he's a locker room thief aids in any positive offsetting manner the drug accusation. Or where the value resides in essentially stating 'I didn't know what it was, but went ahead and took it anyhow'. Either he's a (another) type of fool prone to end up trying out some cyanide or other lethal ingredient at some point to satisfy his curiousity about its effect, or he views those he made the claim to as fools that'll fall for that sort of whopper.

    Finally, its hard for me imagining the validity of his locker story because I don't perceive too many ball players being so bent on self destruction as to have a substance like that in their locker. There's far too many conceivable opportunities for it to be discovered, in a locker room with or without a Barry Bonds skulking about in treasure hunt mode.

  8. #8
    Dreamer rt1ky's Avatar
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    Bonds acts like a spoiled child who thinks everyone else should be his whipping boy, if it's not his trainers, it's the media or another player. I wish he would just go away, far away from baseball and everyone else.

  9. #9
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    As far as I'm concerned, his home runs don't mean anything, and if he does break Hank Aaron's record it should be recorded with an * next to his name.

  10. #10
    clap clap clap sleepysluggo's Avatar
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    Giants backing out of contract?

    Leaked results could force Giants' hand
    - Henry Schulman, Chronicle Staff Writer
    Thursday, January 18, 2007

    Six weeks after he reached a tentative deal to return to San Francisco for a 15th season, Barry Bonds remains a non-Giant.

    He has no contract. He is not on the 40-man roster, and his one-year, $15.8 million agreement has not been formalized in a letter of agreement submitted to Major League Baseball and the Players Association.

    Now, less than four weeks before pitchers and catchers report to spring training, there are questions about whether the team wants that agreement filed.

    The Giants have discussed walking away from the Bonds deal, according to people familiar with their thinking, because of the myriad difficulties in finalizing a contract.

    On Wednesday, the New York Times reported the Giants put the brakes on negotiations and quoted an unnamed lawyer on the Bonds side as speculating the Giants might want to back out of the deal following the fallout from last week's revelation that Bonds failed an amphetamine test and initially blamed it on a substance he took from teammate Mark Sweeney's locker.

    In an interview Wednesday, general manager Brian Sabean declined to address the Times story or whether he is exploring alternatives to signing Bonds. Sabean merely reiterated the club's official position, saying, "The player is unsigned and contract issues remain unresolved. That hasn't changed."

    Ironically, the leaked drug test that embarrassed Bonds last week might be his best insurance policy for staying with the Giants in 2007.

    According to multiple industry sources, the Giants cannot use the failed drug test to walk away from the contract because legally they should not have received the confidential information. Even if the Giants decided to nullify the deal for other reasons, Bonds could argue in a grievance that the drug test was the real cause and win a judgment.

    Moreover, one lawyer who works in the industry but is not connected to Bonds or the Giants said if the deal crumbles, Bonds might have a strong case against MLB or the union for sabotaging it if he can prove one or the other leaked the positive amphetamine test.

    On the other hand, Bonds' case might be weakened because he and the Giants did not submit a letter of agreement to MLB and the union when they reached financial terms, which would have made it binding. The Giants say that was Bonds' choice, because he wanted certain contract issues settled first.

    The Giants and Bonds struck their tentative agreement Dec. 7. Bonds' agent, Jeff Borris, who declined comment Wednesday, had predicted it would take weeks to complete the language.

    According to a source familiar with the events, there were negotiations as recently as last week. The source said Bonds attended a daylong meeting at Borris' Southern California office, with Giants officials on speaker phone, and that a Major League Baseball official was present to discuss security for Bonds and his family as he pursues the career home-run record.

    The Chronicle has reported that Bonds wanted security issues addressed in his contract.

    The Giants' principal demands reportedly center on Bonds' conformity to team rules and restricting clubhouse access to his associates.

    Unclear is whether the Giants are pursuing language allowing them to dock Bonds' pay for time he might have to spend in court if he is indicted for perjury in the BALCO steroids case.

    Giants officials have downplayed that angle, but agents for other players the Giants brought on board this winter said the team presented them with contract language dealing with time spent in court. Some speculated it was created for Bonds but included in all proposed contracts for the sake of uniformity.

    The agents balked at the language, which is one reason none of the nine free agents who signed letters of agreement with the Giants has signed his contract.

    The Giants have rescinded the language, and Sabean said the issue of unsigned contracts was a technicality blown out of proportion in a published report last week.

    "As a matter of fact," Sabean said, "out of 198 free agents that have come under letter of agreement, only 21 contracts have been approved in baseball, which means the contract language and terms have been signed, sealed and delivered and reported to the union."

    Although Barry Zito, Rich Aurilia, Dave Roberts, Steve Kline, Pedro Feliz, Ray Durham, Bengie Molina, Russ Ortiz and Ryan Klesko have not signed contracts, terms of their deals have been reported officially and the players were placed on the Giants' 40-man roster. They are considered signed players, and even if there is haggling over contract language, their deals are binding.

    Bonds is not legally considered a signed player, and spring training is just around the bend. But he sounds as though he expects to be playing somewhere in 2007.

    Bonds, in the Dominican Republic for Juan Marichal's golf tournament, told the Associated Press on Wednesday, "I'm sure I'm going to break the (home-run) record this year."

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl.../18/GIANTS.TMP
    I'm as big a Giants fan that you'll find, but I really hope that they take that contract and burn it. I haven't liked Bonds much at all the last few years, and for him to drag Sweeney through the mud was the final straw. He's an arrogant, locker-hogging jerk and I want him gone. So what if they won't have a left fielder? A pet rock would be just as effective in the outfield.

    BTW, hi. Hope everyone's well.

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