The strategy employed by Alex Rodriguez's legal team to draw Anthony Bosch's credibility into question at the appeal hearing included an accusation that the Biogenesis founder used cocaine, reports Steve Fishman of New York Magazine.
During the cross-examination phase of Bosch's testimony last month, A-Rod's lawyer, Joe Tacopina, reportedly asked the undeniably leading question, "You've done cocaine in the past?," to which the clinic director opted to plead the fifth rather than answer and potentially incriminate himself. (It's unclear whether one can actually incriminate him/herself at a private hearing, but that's moot now.)
Additionally, a photo has surfaced of Bosch sitting at a table that has two small bags of an unidentified white powder.
According to Fishman, Tacopina got the information on Bosch's alleged drug habits from a man named Robert Miller, a friend of the Biogenesis director who has a rather long rap sheet and was brought on to be a smoking gun of the character-assassination variety for A-Rod's appeal. One presumes that Miller is now a former friend of Bosch's.
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In addition to the drug speculation, Rodriguez's team has also alleged that Major League Baseball paid Bosch $5 million to testify on its behalf. MLB and Bosch have denied this charge, so A-Rod plans to take them to federal court on the matter.
Whether or not this purported evidence has any sort of effect on the outcome of the appeal is really up to Frederic Horowitz, the independent arbitrator. Horowitz is supposed to make his decision based on the tangible evidence presented at the hearing. If there is a concrete paper and/or text-message trail that connects A-Rod to illegal dealings with Biogenesis, then all the character assassination in the world won't help his case.
Where attacking Bosch's character could potentially end up serving Rodriguez and his team well is if their suit brought to federal court ends up going to a trial, where a jury might have a much harder time ignoring certain aspects of Bosch's life and how that could affect his reliability as a witness.
A decision in A-Rod's appeal is expected sometime around Christmas, while proceedings in the slugger's suit against Bosch and MLB will kick off in late January.