Alex Rodriguez has maintained a long relationship with a steroid-linked trainer who is persona non grata around Major League Baseball, the New York Daily News reported today.
Angel Presinal was banned from the private areas of every ballpark in the league after he was caught with "gym bag full of steroids" in Toronto in 2001 while working with Cleveland Indians player Juan Gonzalez, according to the report.
But the clubhouse ban didn't stop the Yankee slugger from palling around with the guy as recently as this fall, the newspaper reports. Rodriguez kept a relationship with Presinal despite Major League baseball issuing a warning to it's players to avoid contact with the trainer, the News reported.
Presinal traveled with A-Rod during the entire 2007 season, an unnamed source told the News. During hotel stays, the source told the News, Presinal would bunk down with A-Rod's cousin, Yuri Sucart, who was recently outed by ESPN as the unnamed cousin who Rodriguez said supplied him with the juice he called "bole."
"He was around Alex in 2007," the News source said of Presinal. "Every hotel they went to, he stayed in the same room with Yuri. You would never see Alex with [Presinal]. They would meet in one of their rooms."
Presinal was among the names mentioned in the Mitchell Report, a December 2007 investigation into steroids that nabbed some of the game's highest profile players, including Roger Clemens.
Presinal was not around during the 2008 season, however, but the source tells the news that Sucart was a constant presence around the slugger.
"Yuri is his driver," the source said. "He takes care of him all the time. His clothes, his food; he's with Alex every day."
Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman said that Presinal had no official ties to his club.
"He's never had any association with the Yankees," Cashman said. "Whether he knows our players or has worked with any of our players, I wouldn't be able to confirm that."
And A-Rod's agent could not be reached for comment by the newspaper.
Presinal has been linked to a number of prominent figures in the game including Juan Gonzalez, Pedro Martinez, David Ortiz, Vladimir Guerrero, Bartolo Colon, Miguel Tejada, Adrian Beltre, Moises Alou, Jose Guillen, Ervin Santana, Ruben Sierra, Francisco Cordero, Jose Mesa and Juan Guzman, among others. He runs a gym in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic where steroids are legal.