A-Rod Buddy Is MLB Pariah

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2009 2:12 PM CST

(Newser) – A man who was once a close associate of Alex Rodriguez is suspected of trafficking in steroids and has been banned from non-public areas of big-league ballparks since 2001, the New York Daily News reports. Angel Presinal, called "an unsavory character" by one source, has been close to the superstar infielder since his days with the Texas Rangers and traveled with him throughout the 2007 season. "Several people have warned Alex about this guy," said another source.

Presinal was busted at the Toronto airport in 2001 with a bag containing steroids, drawing MLB's scrutiny. He implicated Juan Gonzalez, who was then with the Cleveland Indians and later played with Rodriguez in Texas. At the time, Presinal denied any involvement with performance-enhancing drugs: "“Don't get mixed up with any steroids or other stuff,” he said he told his young clients. He was not charged, “for reasons that still escape us,” said an MLB official.