New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez addressed a recent "60 Minutes" report that his former inner circle had obtained and leaked documents that implicated Milwaukee Brewers slugger Ryan Braun and Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli in the recent doping scandal -- saying that it is not true.
"I spoke to Cervelli this morning," Rodriguez told reporters Friday in Boston as the Yankees were scheduled to play the Red Sox. "He understands it's not true. We're on the same page."
The leak came just days after the weekly newspaper Miami New Times published documents in January detailing Rodriguez's pervasive use of performance enhancing drugs.
The handwritten documents of Anthony Bosch, the key witness in Major League Baseball's PED investigation, revealed comprehensive doping regimens that Bosch had engineered for a host of professional athletes. His cooperation with MLB has resulted in the suspension of Rodriguez and 13 other major league players.
Braun and Cervelli's names were redacted in the Miami New Times documents. Members of Rodriguez's camp at the time obtained unredacted versions and leaked them to Yahoo! Sports, according to two sources with direct knowledge of the matter. The unredacted documents also implicated Baltimore Oriole Danny Valencia, who MLB later investigated and cleared.
As CBS News correspondent Don Dahler reported, sources close to the matter told "60 Minutes" the purpose of the leak was to show Rodriguez was not the only star using drugs.
On Friday, Rodriguez described the timing of the latest news as weird since this was previously reported months ago, which at the time surprised him. "The most important thing is I spoke to Cervelli. Cervelli is like my brother. We fully understand it's not true."
The Yankees third baseman also said he had not talked to Braun.
"I've been a member of this union for 20 years," said Rodriguez. "It's important for me to know that -- and all the guys to understand -- that my loyalty is to this union. It would never happen and it didn't occur."
Rodriguez -- who was recently handed a 211-game suspension for using performance-enhancing drugs but is contesting it -- said the next several weeks will be a bumpy road.
"Every day, expect a story like this, if not bigger," he said. "And after arbitration, I'll have an opportunity with a full platform ... and I can tell my full story."
Asked who is specifically behind this latest development regarding the leak, Rodriguez said he had no idea.
In a statement to "60 Minutes," Rodriguez lawyer David Cornwell said, "The allegations are untrue and are another attempt to harm Alex -- this time by driving a wedge between Alex and other players in the game. While Alex focuses on baseball and repeatedly states that he is going to respect the appeal process, the drumbeat of false allegations continues."
On July 22, Braun accepted a 65-game suspension for the remainder of the 2013 season for taking performance-enhancing drugs. And on Aug. 5, Cervelli, along with 11 other players, accepted a 50-game ban. MLB has suspended Rodriguez for 211 games. He is appealing.
According to sources close to the investigation, Dahler reported, the leaked document was a major reason for the length of A-rod's suspension.
All three of the unredacted documents leaked to Yahoo! Sports list Braun's name. One document shows Braun on a Bosch list along with Rodriguez, Cervelli, Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Melky Cabrera and minor league pitcher Cesar Carrillo, all of whom have been suspended for PEDs.
The revelation that members of Rodriguez's camp at the time leaked documents implicating other players to the media could present significant problems for Rodriguez's legal team as they enter the arbitration process to appeal his suspension. Baseball officials say they levied a harsher suspension on Rodriguez because of his continued use of PEDs over multiple years as well as his attempt to "obstruct and frustrate" MLB's investigation.
Rodriguez's case is set to be heard by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz in the coming weeks. If MLB were to present evidence that Rodriguez's camp knowingly leaked additional Bosch business records, it might demonstrate that Rodriguez's camp had not only obtained them to keep them out of the hands of investigators, but that he actively sought to interfere with baseball's investigation by releasing other players' names.
In early April, accusations arose that Rodriguez had purchased at least some of Bosch's business records. Rodriguez's spokesperson at the time flatly denied the reports.
Rodriguez has denied any connection to Bosch and his clinic, and says he was never treated by him, advised by him, and that the Miami New Times documents implicating him are not legitimate.