The first response of baseball commissioner Bud Selig to complaints from Congress was one of almost ridiculous arrogance. After stalling for years on requests for an investigation into drug use in the major leagues, in 2005 Seligsent the Congressional Committee a letter telling them they had no jurisdiction in the matter. The hearings, Selig informed them, were "an absolutely excessive and unprecedented misuse of Congressional power."
Perhaps it was years of being called the "czar" of baseball, but whatever inflated Selig's sense of his own power, he was delusional. Several Congressmen went public about the possibility of stripping baseball of its exemption from antitrust laws, which it had enjoyed since 1922. Selig quickly got the message and determined to show that baseball could indeed clean its own house; he tapped his good friend former Senator George Mitchell (D- Maine) to conduct MLB's investigation. On December 13, 2007, Mitchell's 400-plus page report named 89 players who had allegedly used PEDs, Roger Clemens among them.
Mitchell's report, though, offered no hard evidence of drug use for most of the players named. The first real proof came out of a 2003 agreement between MLB and the players union to anonymously test every player in the game so that the extent of drug use could be determined.
But on April 8, 2004, six days after testing was completed, federal agents confiscated the samples from a Las Vegas lab and records of the test results from a company in Long Beach, California. Both the Commissioner's office and the union vehemently objected. The agents' warrant was for only ten samples related to their investigation into the BALCO steroids lab in building their case against Barry Bonds, and they had no authority to take the samples of all 104 players who had tested positive. It took more than five years of legal squabbling for the union to get the samples back.On August 26, 2009, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 9-2 that the agents had violated the players' civil liberties and ordered the samples returned, which, after another appeal was denied, they were. The samples were promptly destroyed.
But it was too late for some well-known players. The feds broke the ID code on the "blind" samples and were able to put names to the samples. In February, 2009, as the courts debated the status of the confiscated test samples, the names of Alex Rodriguez, Manny Ramirez, and David Ortiz were leaked to the New York Times and Sports Illustrated. Who dropped their names?
Well, only three parties had access to the information. The first two were MLB and the union, both of whom would have violated federal labor laws if they had revealed the identity of any player who tested positive. A logical conclusion, then, is that the players' names were leaked by the ones whobenefitted most from it, the federal investigators who were trying to keep their case alive.