Giants’ OF Jose Guillen tied to federal drug probe

By Janie McCauley, AP

SAN FRANCISCO — San Francisco Giants outfielder Jose Guillen, left off the team’s postseason roster, is linked to a federal investigation into shipments of performance-enhancing drugs, The New York Times reported on its website Thursday night. The story, citing several unidentified lawyers, said federal authorities told Major League Baseball they were looking into shipments of human growth hormone, allegedly sent to Guillen’s wife in the Bay Area. That was just before the postseason began, The Times said. Guillen was left off the Giants’ roster for all three rounds because of a nagging neck injury, according to manager Bruce Bochy. A person in Major League Baseball confirmed the investigation to The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the probe was ongoing. “I don’t know anything about it and right now I don’t have a comment,” Bochy said. Jay Reisinger, Guillen’s attorney, also declined comment in an e-mail. San Francisco beat the Texas Rangers 9-0 on Thursday night for a 2-0 lead in the World Series. Pablo Sandoval also had no knowledge of Guillen’s situation and would not comment. It was a bit of a surprise when Guillen wasn’t included on the Giants’ roster for their first playoff series against Atlanta. And while other players who were left off — including US$126 million pitcher Barry Zito — have been around throughout the team’s October run, Guillen has been curiously absent. Hitting coach Hensley Meulens said he hadn’t been in contact with Guillen since the playoffs began.

“I have no clue, no idea,” Meulens said upon being told of the investigation. The 34-year-old Guillen has been tied to performance-enhancing drugs before. The San Francisco Chronicle reported in 2007 that he allegedly purchased more than US$19,000 worth of HGH, steroids and other drugs from the Palm Beach Rejuvenation Center between May 2002 and June 2005. MLB suspended Guillen for 15 days following the report, then rescinded the penalty in May 2008 as part of a deal between players and owners to toughen the sport’s drug rules. Guillen has played for 10 teams since breaking into the big leagues with Pittsburgh in 1997. He is a .270 career hitter with 214 homers and 887 RBIs.