(AP) Doctor retained by A-Rod says leg uninjured
By MARK DIDTLER
A doctor retained by Alex Rodriguez for a second opinion _ one that contradicted the New York Yankees’ diagnosis of his leg injury Wednesday _ was reprimanded this year by New Jersey’s board of medical examiners over steroid prescriptions.
Rodriguez is one of more than a dozen players under investigation by Major League Baseball for alleged ties to a Florida clinic accused of distributing performance-enhancing drugs.
The New Jersey State Board of Medical Examiners filed an order of reprimand against Dr. Michael Gross on Feb. 13 for his conduct at his Active Center for Health & Wellness.
The orthopedist was fined $30,000 and ordered to pay $10,000 in costs.
The New York Daily News first reported the reprimand Wednesday and said MLB would expand its drug probe to examine Rodriguez’s relationship with Gross.
Rodriguez was diagnosed Sunday with a strained left quadriceps on the final day of his injury rehabilitation assignment. At the time, the Yankees said the three-time MVP was examined by team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, where an MRI was performed. The team said Rodriguez had a grade one strain, which is the least severe type, and would return to Tampa for rest and treatment.
But Gross said during an interview on WFAN radio Wednesday that he examined Rodriguez’s scan earlier in the day.
He added: “I asked him does anything hurt? And he said no.'”
Gross never personally examined Rodriguez and based his diagnosis on the MRI.
He didn’t return a telephone message left at his office.
Under baseball’s collective bargaining agreement, a player must inform his team in writing of his decision to obtain a second medical opinion. The Yankees said Rodriguez retained Gross without notifying them.
Cashman said Rodriguez complained of “tightness” in the quadriceps July 12 “and therefore refused to consent to the transfer of his assignment” from Class A Tampa to Triple-A Scranton. He said Rodriguez complained of stiffness again Sunday, which led to the MRI.
Rodriguez arrived at the Yankees’ minor league complex Wednesday and spent a little over four hours there.
Rodriguez, who turns 38 on Saturday, had been recovering from hip surgery in January. He hit .250 (8 for 40) with two homers and eight RBIs in 13 minor league games before the leg injury.
Outfielder Curtis Granderson, coming back from a broken pinkie, talked with Rodriguez in the clubhouse.
Granderson said Rodriguez was in a good mood.
UPDATE: Yankees GM Cashman said Rodriguez did violate the collective bargaining agreement:
“I heard via a text message this afternoon from Alex Rodriguez that he had retained a doctor to review his medical situation. In media reports, we have since learned that the doctor in question has acknowledged that he did not examine Mr. Rodriguez and that he was not retained to do a comprehensive medical examination of Mr. Rodriguez. Contrary to the Basic Agreement, Mr. Rodriguez did not notify us at any time that he was seeking a second opinion from any doctor with regard to his quad strain.”