Ryan Howard Named in Al Jazeera PED Investigation

Al Jazeera is airing a documentary tonight called “The Dark Side”, which is described as a “monthslong investigation” in which an undercover investigator exposes the use of performance-enhancing drugs in sports. Ryan Howard is among those implicated as having used PEDs, as well as Peyton Manning, Ryan Zimmerman, and Taylor Teagarden.

Travis Waldron and Ryan Grim wrote about the investigation at The Huffington Post and Al Jazeera’s report can be viewed here.

Howard is said, by a Texas pharmacist named Charlie Sly, to have used a drug called Delta-2. Delta-2 is a hormonal supplement that is “steroidal in nature” but is not actually an anabolic steroid. The drug “wasn’t detectable,” according to Sly.

Howard has denied the allegations. His (and Zimmerman’s) attorney, William Burck of Quinn Emanuel, released this statement to MLB Trade Rumors:

It’s inexcusable and irresponsible that Al Jazeera would provide a platform and broadcast outright lies about Mr. Howard and Mr. Zimmerman. The extraordinarily reckless claims made against our clients in this report are completely false and rely on a source who has already recanted his claims.  We will go to court to hold Al Jazeera and other responsible parties accountable for smearing our clients’ good names.

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  1. Romus

    December 27, 2015 08:17 AM

    An Al Jazeera report….hmm…..if the players are going to sue Al Jazeera, better get in line behind Al Gore.

  2. Major Malfunction

    December 27, 2015 08:46 AM

    Whether it was HGH or even Captain America serum, he (allegedly) didn’t take enough to make $25M/year seem palatable.

    • Romus

      December 27, 2015 10:05 AM

      If proven true, which I seriously doubt….no less, Ryan would face a suspension by MLB and probably the realization that retirement may start to look like a better alternative after the year is out. Of course, with all the legal matters that would entail it could be a year or so out anyway.
      Charlie Sly, have to like that name for a druggist, says the names were thrown out there by him on a lark, and no truth at all to the findings by the undercover guy.

  3. Bob

    December 27, 2015 12:02 PM

    Just watched it. It seemed well done.

  4. John kwiatkowski

    December 27, 2015 12:42 PM


    Who watches Al jezera other than Muslim terrorists? Your doing our people a disservice by even acknowledging them.

    • JRFarmer

      December 27, 2015 01:40 PM

      Disgusting comment. Go away before somebody drops a house on you.

    • Bubba0101

      December 27, 2015 03:39 PM

      I bet you don’t like a whole bunch of foods you’ve never tried either. How bout you try reading some of their articles and watching some of their documentaries before you spew this sort of drivel. They did a piece on teenage homelessness in Philadelphia that no local news outlet would have even come close to. Broaden your horizons. There’s a lot more out there than you know.

    • Donald J. Thump

      December 27, 2015 06:34 PM

      Has Al Jazeera even been vetted yet?

    • Major Malfunction

      December 27, 2015 09:19 PM

      You’re* 😉

    • CJ

      December 28, 2015 09:17 AM

      Worst. Troll. Ever.

      • Bubba0101

        December 29, 2015 10:46 AM

        Rightly so Bill. This is why the rest of the world sees us as Donald Trump clones.

  5. Renmiked

    December 28, 2015 09:12 AM

    Personally, I really don’t care if athletes use PED’s but I am not surprised that this is given way less credibility for multiple reasons. First, Peyton Manning is involved and the major sports networks know they will be bidding for his services in the next year or two, plus they idolize him, so it’ll be glossed over. Second, locally fans and media will wave off these things about their own players, no matter the evidence. Lastly, more NFLers were named, than other sports, and that league has always gotten off very easy when it comes to PEDs.

    If Howard did use, which I personally believe is highly likely, then with the proper evidence he should be suspended.

    • Romus

      December 28, 2015 10:37 AM

      Seems a majority of the players named are at the tail-end of their productive portions of their careers. As opposed to a decade or so ago when the Sosa, Mcguires, Palmieros, ARods and Bonds were at their peak. Nevertheless, if further investigation is found to be correct in the allegations, then they will have to pay the price.

  6. Steve

    December 28, 2015 10:46 PM

    Unrelated, but the cuban pitcher Sierra jusy became a FA. Mid 90s FB, 24 yrs old, some questions on consistancy, estimated contract of 30 mil total. He fits the profile of the type of guy the Phillies should go after, but its a lot of money for an unknown player, and we dont have a ton of room on the MLB or AAA rotation right now.

  7. Mike B.

    December 29, 2015 12:04 AM

    At least the Ryans aren’t screwing around with their choice of law firms. Quinn is a bulldog.

    The whole thing seems pretty hinky. Guy makes claims, recants them, and the stuff he claims to have supplied is conveniently “undetectable.”

    • Romus

      December 29, 2015 08:47 AM

      If I were the victims I would hold off before suing.
      Wait to see what their respective professional leagues decide to do as for an investigation.
      They are all ‘public persona’, a lawsuit then opens the flood gates for a good portion of their personal information if Al Jeezera wants to stand and fight.
      Public figures have a more difficult time proving slander/def. They are understood to take some risk in being before the public eye and many of them profit by their public persona. They have to prove that the party defaming them knew the statements were false, made them with actual malice, or was negligent in saying or writing them. Proving these elements can be an uphill battle. On the other hand, an outrageously inaccurate statement that’s harmful to one’s career can be grounds for a successful defamation suit, even if the subject is famous.

      • ASK

        January 02, 2016 08:46 AM


        I think the primary intent of any lawsuit by the Ryans would be to clear their respective names. If they are truly clean, their willingness to open up to being investigated and sharing their personal information would go a long way towards them winning in the court of public opinion, even if they can’t prove libel or defamation.

  8. Philk

    December 29, 2015 11:16 AM

    I will not indict Ryan Howard yet because I do not know the whole story. If he was under the influence of steroids while on the field playing then I have a huge problem with that. If he used steroids while trying to recover from an injury – although banned by MLB – I forgive him. If steroids are very helpful in the recovery process I feel a player should be able to use them and MLB should revisit their ban in this regard. They can have a strict protocol in place for recovery and then test that person (even more) while playing.
    However, I do believe that Ryan should come forth and just tell the truth, and the sooner the better. People who have admitted steroid usage are more apt to be accepted quicker by the fans and the public then people who deny it ad infinitum. Look at Jason Giambi and Barry Bonds for instance.
    Ryan, yes you are in decline but you are still one of my favorite baseball players!

    • Steve

      December 29, 2015 12:26 PM

      I dont see how the mlb can ban certain types of steriods but then allow then under certain conditions, i.e. injury recovery.

      If player X suffers an injury and is allowed to use steroids during his recovery, who determines when he has fully recovered? If he was throwing 100 mph before the injury, is he allowed to use steroids and rehab until his velocity is back to 100%? How about a player like Utley who’s injury status change day yo day. If his knees are sore one week can he take steroids? Does he have to pass a drug test before comming off the DL? Are we going to begin having monthly tests for players who were “approved” to use steroids for an injury? I cant see the union going fot that.

      I think banned substances need to 100% banned or 100% allowed. Just look at adderall. One year Ruiz is suspended, the next he magically has a Rx. There will always be a Dr. willing to sign a prescription. It is sad when injury cuts a player’s career short, but it is also a reality. Its a privelege to play professional baseball that not everyone is afforded. The list of talented players who never made the majors due to injury is much longer than the list of established MLB players who suffered injuries. It can be a cruel path, but that not a justification for steroids.

      • Philk

        December 29, 2015 04:41 PM

        H Steve
        Thanks for your excellent response.
        I just feel that an athlete (majors or minors) who is injured should have at his/her disposal all the best of everything – drugs as well as physical therapy. The cut off point for recovery is when the person takes the field again. If there is a residual with steroids than after all has worn off. At the point of playing again the person must be clean and I see no reason why MLB cant devise and put into place a protocol so the person is playing clean. Things dont have to be so absolute and can be done on a case by case basis with approval for a recovery period and testing on return. Maybe serious injuries can be the first step. As a fan I want players playing clean but also to be able to return as quick as possible to help the team.

      • Steve

        December 30, 2015 07:39 AM

        I can definitely sympathize with your view on injuries and recovery, just look what happened to the Phillies. It seems that baseball has a hard enough time keeping banned substances out of the game now with a zero tolerance policy (although they have show great improvement). I’m afraid that allowing drug use on a case by case basis will make it easier for players to manipulate the system.

      • 100Bucks

        January 01, 2016 08:54 AM

        Philk makes a point. Do you realize that there was no Penicillin and no Advil when Babe Ruth played? The number of allowed pharmaceuticals and medical procedures since Ted Williams played are too numerous to mention. If someone has a serious infection, I think we can all agree that they should take antibiotics to recover. I think we all agree that Tommy John surgery should remain legal for pitchers. Why not steroids for recovery periods? I think Philk is saying that during a 30 or 60 day DL the players would be free to use and then be required to test clean before retaking the field. Its an interesting thought.

  9. Jesse

    December 29, 2015 02:41 PM

    Honestly, this seems like poor reporting to me. Not saying any of these guys is clean, but you’re essentially taking the word of a guy who is trying to puff himself to a potential client. Not exactly a recipe for accuracy.

    Again, I’m not defending Howard, but it bothers me that a lot of people don’t have any skepticism about allegations like this and rush to report before doing serious investigation.

    • Romus

      December 29, 2015 03:16 PM

      Apparently Deborah Davies swears by her investigation reporting and its authenticity and validity. I wonder if the truth will come out.

      • ASK

        January 02, 2016 08:50 AM

        Deborah Davies’s investigative reporting being authentic and valid and the information that was providing being incorrect are not mutually exclusive. Since they apparently do not have a second source to confirm that Manning, Howard, Zim, et al did what Sly said they did, the reporting is most likely authentic, but we don’t know if Sly was telling the truth or trying to BS his way into obtaining a new client.

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