Chicago Cubs center fielder Marlon Byrd is a thick, hulking dude. And if he had the power numbers of an Albert Pujols or Alex Rodriguez, or say, Jose Bautista, people would probably speculate about the source of Byrd’s prodigious biceps. As it is, no one is particularly concerned with PEDs when it comes to Marlon Byrd, and that includes the man, himself.
And that’s despite his continued involvement with the human embodiment of performance-enhancing drugs in baseball, Victor Conte.
“I want to say all Major League Baseball knew when it came out,” Byrd said of his relationship with Conte. “I’m sure the Cubs knew. They wouldn’t have signed me if there were any worries. I’m a supplement guy. The Phillies knew it when I was drafted. I looked the same way.”
As long as he doesn’t test positive for any banned substance, Byrd doesn’t see it as a problem and, in terms of rules, it isn’t. Major League Baseball officials have talked to him about using supplements, saying they believe players should not take products that are not certified under the NSF league-provided testing program.
“Our position with respect to supplement manufacturers, generally, is that if their products are not certified under the NSF [league-provided testing] program, players shouldn’t be using them,” Rob Manfred, MLB’s top labor-relations official, told the Chicago Sun-Times. “And we told Mr. Byrd that.”
Manfred added that he is not singling out Conte.
“Obviously, Mr. Conte is a high-profile guy with a well-documented history,” he said. “But for any players taking a chance that can put their careers at risk, we apply that policy across the board.”
Despite the warning, Byrd has declined to drop Conte.
“There’s no need,” Byrd said. “I get tested. Major League Baseball knows they can test guys any time. It’s random. I don’t have any worries. I don’t think Major League Baseball has any worries. Victor’s name is what it is, but at some point, everyone is going to have to move on.” cubs.com.
What he said.
The open book manner in which Byrd is conducting his training affairs makes it almost inconceivable that he’s doing anything wrong. He can work with whomever he so chooses, and as long as he continues to give us no reason to doubt his word, I’m happy to take it.