The date was January 29, 2013. Miami New Times had just published its investigation outing Coral Gables clinic Biogenesis as a steroid dealer to the stars, including Alex Rodriguez. A few hours later, A-Rod and his celebrity lawyer Roy Black met with Susy Ayala-Ribero, the high school buddy and now attorney for Tony Bosch, the clinic's owner.
Then, Ayala-Ribero made one of A-Rod's lawyers an extraordinary proposition: The superstar should pony up $500,000 to pay for Bosch's legal fight.
That eye-opening exchange is detailed in a huge batch of new evidence put onto the public record in the ongoing federal criminal case against Bosch and his associates -- a batch that also includes Bosch's allegations that super-agent Scott Boras tried to help cover up Manny Ramirez's failed steroid test.
The new evidence comes from filings by Frank Quintero Jr., an attorney representing former University of Miami pitching coach Lazer Collazo, who is charged with conspiring with Bosch to distribute testosterone; he's pleaded not guilty.
Quintero filed a new demand for evidence from MLB and the feds this afternoon, and included dozens of pages of already submitted evidence. Among it: record of Ribero-Ayala's testimony during A-Rod's arbitration case.
In that testimony, Ribero-Ayala says she headed to Black's office the same day New Times published its story, and found A-Rod there with Black and Jared Lopez, another lawyer. She and Lopez later discussed the idea of Rodriguez covering Bosch's legal fees, she testified.
"I spoke to Mr. Lopez and told him it was my understanding that Mr. Rodriguez wanted to contribute to Mr. Bosch's legal fees," she said.
Lopez asked how much she'd like the ballplayer to kick in. "I said 500. And he said, 'Thousand?' And I said yes," she testified.
When Black later quizzed her on the request, she told him "that's what I thought the case would be worth." (In fact, it wasn't a bad estimate; other documents suggest that Ribero-Ayala and her husband have been paid more than a million bucks by Major League Baseball, which agreed to cover Bosch's legal fees.)
A-Rod did eventually help pay for Bosch's legal fees -- but only kicked in $25,000. Bosch later flipped and cooperated with MLB to help suspend his star client.
In the deposition, Ribero-Ayala also talked about crafting the statement Bosch later put out denying New Times story. She says she first warned A-Rod against issuing his own denial -- "I said something about the fact that Lance Armstrong denied allegations, and that didn't go so well for him," -- but then helped Bosch issue his own denial.
Just as a refresher, here's the statement:
"The news report about a purported relationship between Alex Rodriguez and Anthony Bosch [is] not true. He was not Mr. Bosch's patient, he was never treated by him and he was never advised by him. The purported documents referenced in the story -- at least as they relate to Alex Rodriguez -- are not legitimate."
Didn't Ribero-Ayala know that statement was totally bogus? Not at all, the attorney says.
"Treated implies a, in my view, a doctor/patient relationship. Anthony Bosch is not a licensed physician, so I was comfortable with the word 'treated,'" she said.
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OK, then. Ribero-Ayala hasn't responded to a message from Riptide asking for comment on the deposition.
Among the other newsworthy bits among the new evidence are a DEA summary of meeting with Tony Bosch that confirm what Newsday reported last week: Namely, that Bosch claimed that Boras, A-Rod's agent, had helped cook up an improbable story when Manny Ramirez failed a test in 2009 (namely, that he'd mistaken testosterone cream for aftershave.)
Boras has denied Bosch's claims, but the new documents now show that Bosch made them to federal agents.