Major League Baseball (MLB) wants to suspend about 20 players accused of using performance-enhancing drugs, ESPN reports. The players include the New York Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez and the Milwaukee Brewers’ Ryan Braun.
Both players deny using performance-enhancing drugs, according to CNN. MLB may seek 100-game suspensions for all of the players, who are expected to fight the move, according to ESPN.
The players are connected with a Miami-area clinic, Biogenesis of America, which is now closed. In January, a Florida newspaper reported Rodriguez and Braun obtained performance-enhancing drugs from Biogenesis. MLB filed a suit against Biogenesis for allegedly providing performance-enhancing drugs to players, and advising them on how to pass drug tests. The clinic’s owner, Tony Bosch, reached an agreement to cooperate with a MLB investigation, the article notes. The league may drop the suit, ESPN reports.
In January, MLB and its players union announced they reached an agreement to conduct in-season blood testing of players for human growth hormone. Players also will be tested for synthetic testosterone, which is increasingly popular because it washes out of the body fairly quickly after being used.
Major League Baseball was the first major sport in the United States to agree to human growth hormone testing. It reached an agreement with its union in November 2011 to test for the substance, but only in spring training and the off-season. The new agreement expands the testing into the baseball season.
Human growth hormone can help players build muscle mass, and to recover quickly from extended physical activity. It cannot be used legally without a prescription.