ESPN reports that Astros' Right Fielder Fernando Martinez has been identified in PED-supplying clinic Biogenesis' documents.
According to ESPN's Outside the Lines, Fernando Martinez' has been identified as one of five new players named in documents from the Biogenesis of America clinic accused of supplying banned performance enhancing substances to atheletes.
Last month, the Miami New Times published an exhaustive article detailing the distribution of performance enhancers by a Miami wellness clinic whose owner's private notes had been given over to the New York Times by a former employee. These notes included records of clients, what had been sold to them, and other details that have been slowly deciphered and made public by various news outlets.
Some major baseball names alleged to have received banned supplements include former MVP's Ryan Braun and Alex Rodriguez, Nationals starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez, Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz, Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera, and others. Last season, then-Giants outfielder Melky Cabrera, who was on his way to an MVP-candidate worthy season himself, was busted as having acquired banned substances from Biogenesis. This led to the beginning of an MLB investigation into the link between Biogenesis and Cabrera's agents, the ACES group that also represents or has represented Braun, Gonzalez, Cruz, and other major leaguers connected to the scandal.
ACES also represents the Astros' own Fernando Martinez, whose name was identified in the Biogenesis documents on Tuesday evening by ESPN. It is not clear at this point whether Martinez was supplied with banned performance enhancers by the wellness clinic, nor is his inclusion proof that he either actually received or used any substances. Finally, the present information does not indicate what products were supplied - Martinez' purchases may not contain any substances banned by MLB. For now, fans will have to wait for more details.
Nonetheless, Martinez' inclusion will definitely spark an investigation and could impact his role with the club in 2013 and beyond. Martinez is currently a slight favorite among The Crawfish Boxes readers to win the starting Right Field job for the 2013 Astros, and after several seasons of inability to live up to his prospect hype with any of his clubs, it is reasonable to assume that this season could be his last legitimate opportunity to establish himself as a Major League regular for quite a while, if ever again. If MLB finds that there is enough evidence against Martinez to warrant a fifty game suspension, the Astros have a long list of young players ready to step up for their own extended look, and Martinez' career could be jeopardized.