It was announced today by Major League Baseball that Ramirez tested positive for a banned substance and would be suspended for 50 games. Now, an anonymous source has come forward to tell Yahoo! Sports that the forbidden drug was used to treat the slugger’s sexual dysfunction.
Two other anonymous sources refute that claim and told Yahoo! that the substance Ramirez tested positive for was gonadotropin, which is most commonly used by women as a fertility drug. The drug also could be used to trigger testosterone production — the depletion of which is a side effect of steroids — but Ramirez has never tested positive for steroids or human growth hormone.
The banned drug is primarily used to stimulate the testicles — particularly for men with a history of steroid use.
“Testosterone and similar drugs are effective for erectile dysfunction in that they jazz up your sex drive,” Charles Yesalis, a professor at Penn State who has testified before Congress on issues of performance-enhancing drugs, told Yahoo! “But far more clinicians accept that affect with Viagra and Cialis. It’s hard for me to understand if it was erectile dysfunction why they would use it.”
Ramirez initially tested positive for the substance in spring training and then had another portion of the same sample tested again more recently.
A MLB official said Ramirez could have applied for a therapeutic exemption if he had a legitimate need for the drug, but Ramirez did not. Ramirez will not contest his suspension and will be out through July 3.
Ramirez’s suspension comes at a time when the Dodgers are undefeated at home and have baseball’s best record.