A-Rod's Routine: A Day in the Life of a Major-League Doper

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The A-Rod trial has revealed a lot about the particulars of a doping regimen. Steve Eder, investigative sports reporter at The New York Times, takes us through a day in the life of a major-league doper.

Eder says it's difficult to know if everything in the report issued by the arbitrator, Fredric Horowitz, is 100% true as a lot of it relies on materials from Tony Bosch, a person some people think is unreliable. Bosch owned an anti-aging clinic and wore a white lab coat despite not being a medical doctor.

“One of the things you see in the report from Horowitz is for the first time, Bosch’s testimony matched up with his clinic notes and blackberry messages," says Eder. "That’s what Horowitz has done to draw his conclusions.” But at the same time, Eder says Horowitz "refers to Bosch as a drug dealer in his report.”

In one message, Bosch refers to Rodriguez's regimen as "meds," and the third-basemen replied "Not meds, dude. Food." 

At any rate, Eder says, “Alex Rodriguez and his representatives say this was totally biased, totally unfair."

Alex Rodriguez's (Alleged) Doping Tricks

Below is the document that outlines Alex Rodriguez's alleged four-phase performance-enhancing drug diet (from the lawsuit Rodriguez filed to try to get his suspension overturned). "If this is all true," Eder says, "what it presents is almost an unprecedented look into what doping might look like.” Some of the wilder allegations include:

  • Testosterone Lozenges (nicknamed "gummies"): "Sublingual" steroids are placed under the tongue. A-Rod was instructed to place a "troche" under his tongue just before game-time.
  • Cream in the Morning, Cream at Night (nicknamed "pink food"): Two different types of "transdermal" creams, one applied in the morning and one in the evening -- or "a combination of the two above creams applied in the evening." Except on the days when drug tests were imminent! In April 2012, Rodriguez allegedly messaged Bosch to ask for advice as a drug test approached. Bosch told A-Rod if he was asked for a urine sample to "wait the longest you can and don’t use the pink until after."
  • Two Shots a Day (At Least) In Phase One, Rodriguez was instructed to inject hormones under the skin in the morning and the evening, with an extra midday dose on Mondays and Friday.
  • Vitamin C! Amid all the HGH, testosterone, and GHRP, good old Vitamin C oral doses.



Steve Eder

Comments [15]

Truth & Beauty from Brooklyn

@ sports talk from nyc: One of the nice things about public radio is the spectrum of topics it covers, including sports. NPR has several sports reporters and used to have Red Barber and John Feinstein commenting on a regular basis. If you don't like this topic, you can turn down the volume on your radio just as I did when Snooki was on the Leonard Lopate show yesterday, but don't censor it for everyone else.

Jan. 15 2014 11:44 AM

Testosterone isn't going to grow back teeth or increase height--except that it may straighten out a bent-over body. It has been proven to promote hair growth in both men and women--sometimes inappropriately. For details, go to the website run by one of the leading testosterone researchers, a breastsurgeon:
The emphasis in this website is on testosterone's benefits for women, but it also has detailed information about men.

As for testosterone's possible side effects: Aside from inappropriate hair growth and acne, they are few and far between. In fact, high doses of testosterone are taken by transgender men for multiple decades, with no unusual health problems. On the contrary, these men tend to live to ripe old age.

Jan. 15 2014 11:36 AM

GEEE…professional (jr. high, high school, college) athletes use performance-enhancing drugs??

No, $h*t!

Jan. 15 2014 11:32 AM
Truth & Beauty from Brooklyn

Looking at the list, I see quite a few substances that represent a man who never studied biology in school and literally has enough money to flush down the toilet. For example, I see Vitamin C on the list. The human body needs no more than 60 mg (milligrams) of Vitamin C per day. Anything over that leaves the body in the urine. However, if one takes too much Vitamin C, it can cause kidney stones. My conclusion, therefore, is that either he was taking just under the 2,000 mg/day or that he will likely develop kidney stones in short order.

The Omega 3, 6, 9 is nothing more than the Omega fatty acids that cardiologists recommend we take to control cholesterol. I don't know his daily dose, but I bet his arteries are clean as a whistle.

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. There are 20 amino acids needed for the proteins in the human body and about half of them are synthesized in the body. If one does not eat a balanced diet, then perhaps supplements are necessary, but generally not. Most people need about 56 grams (about 2 oz) of protein per day. Athletes need maybe 100 grams during the pre-season and season. More than that can result in gout.

Melatonin is also created within the body (as is serotonin). It is a chemical that helps one sleep and one can get it as easily from eating a bowl of cherries, but take supplements. What is listed on this paper is for bedtime use, which means he has sleep issues, but it is a legitimate supplement.


That said, the hormones are another story entirely. When one is well-nourished - the result of a balanced diet - one should not need supplements - but the hormones are a problem. And steroids especially so, because they cause the adrenal cortex which produces steroids WHEN THE BODY NEEDS THEM to atrophy. If one wants to take that risk - enhancing athletic ability by destroying an important part of the body - then one needs to take full responsibility for that action. But if one does this and expects to beat competitors at sports, then that is clearly cheating. If Mr. Rodriguez did take all these hormones and steroids, he cheated at sports, but he is also cheating his body and he'll pay for that later. Mother Nature has a way of winning in the end.

Jan. 15 2014 11:31 AM
sports talk from nyc

i think you need to take into account that this conversation is 100% boring to a swath of your listener population, when presented in a sports context and you needed to present this a testosterone/health issue that has a sports angle.
I hated this segment - who cares about this, this is public radio not a sports radio show. I hate baseball!
it's these segments that kill any urge i have to contribute to this station.

Jan. 15 2014 11:30 AM

Waste of air time!

Jan. 15 2014 11:29 AM

Does anyone really care about what these MEATHEADS get up to… REALLY?!?!?!?

Jan. 15 2014 11:28 AM
Noah Dillon

A listener claims that he grew back a tooth, gained hair, and has increased his height in his mid-forties—that he is on a miracle youth rejuvenating regimen. That's silly, wrong, absolute quackery. It's impossible: the human body doesn't work like that. You can get healthier; you can't grow teeth back and you're unlikely to live much longer than the average healthy human in a developed country.

Also: let's all bear that players have been doping in some form since probably baseball's advent. Anyone remember the prolific abuse of amphetamines? Bud Selig speculated that amphetamines had been widely used in baseball clubhouses for "seven or eight decades."

Jan. 15 2014 11:21 AM
Linda from East Village

There is strong evidence emerging from both clinical trials published in peer-reviewed medical journals, and from doctors and patients, that testosterone offers enormous health benefits for both men and women (the latter taking much lower doses). These benefits range from cardiac protection to mood stability to protection against diabetes, and much more. Testosterone is even being successfully used to treat women with breast cancer, and may prove beneficial in treating autoimmune diseases such as MS. The trick is that testosterone has a short half life and needs to be continually available in the body. The best form of delivery is long-acting pellet implants in the hip, which last about 4-6 months. They're already in wide use in the South and Midwest.

Jan. 15 2014 11:18 AM
Tony from Canarsie

A caller claimed to have grown two inches with the help of Gary Null, but he didn't say where. I ate so much over the holidays that I felt like I gained two inches around my waist.

Jan. 15 2014 11:15 AM
JD from Upper West

Nothing drug-related will ever surprise me sportwise post Lance Armstong.

Jan. 15 2014 11:08 AM

You can not grow a tooth back, such a liar!!!

Jan. 15 2014 11:07 AM

The thing that bothers me the most about ARod is that he is paid SO. MUCH. MONEY. And then went and cheated!

Jan. 15 2014 11:06 AM
Jack from Manhattan

Unfortunately, there is scant scientific data to support that testosterone, IGF1, HGH, etc actually enhance performance. These class of molecules are not the anabolic steroids that people are familiar with. I'm sure the the NIH would never approve of a study to test if these compounds enhance athletic performance. I suspect their greatest effects are between the ears of those that take them.

Jan. 15 2014 11:04 AM

Please spare me such unimportant time-wasters as this segment.

Jan. 15 2014 11:02 AM

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