Phillies Notebook: Phillies' Cliff Lee likes drug enforcement

Posted: July 18, 2013

NEW YORK - Two former MVPs could face suspensions when the results of baseball's investigation into the anti-aging clinic Biogenesis are presented. According to players' union executive director Michael Weiner, those findings could be presented "within the next month."

But players like Ryan Braun and Alex Rodriguez, two principle players reportedly involved in the findings into Biogenesis, the closed anti-aging clinic accused of distributing performance-enhancing drugs, might not face their respective suspensions until the 2014 season as the appeal process also would have to play out.

No matter when the suspensions are doled out, one player at Citi Field for last night's All-Star Game will be glad to see it happen. Cliff Lee spoke in strong defense of Major League Baseball's drug program before his National League team took batting practice.

"I think this is just proving that the system works," Lee said.

Although some players might grow tired of the dark cloud that is PEDs, Lee is glad he's playing now as opposed to the 1990s, when steroid use was widespread and not penalized.

"Guys are getting caught," Lee said. "You're not getting away with it anymore. It's not like it's a lingering issue. It's proven that we've taken care of the issue. If you do it - no matter who you are - you're going to get in trouble and be suspended and everyone is going to know. To me, it's a good thing. I hope anyone that does steroids or anything like that, and they're cheating the game, I hope they get caught and I hope they get suspended. That's the way it should be."

In his 11th annual All-Star Game rap session with baseball writers, commissioner Bud Selig would not speculate on when those decisions would come.

"Only time will tell," Selig said. "We're in the midst of a very thorough and tough investigation on all of this, because I really believe it's not only the right thing to do, but we're going to do it and that's all I can tell you."

Dom and Mariano

Although Domonic Brown has yet to play a full season in the big leagues, he has faced his share of All-Star pitchers.

Brown has stared down Cy Young Award winners, including Felix Hernandez, Chris Carpenter, Tim Lincecum and Zack Greinke; he hit a home run off Greinke. He has stepped into the batter's box against two perfect-game pitchers: Mark Buehrle and Matt Cain.

But entering last night's All-Star Game, Brown had not faced the only no-doubt-about-it Hall of Famer at Citi Field: New York Yankees closer Mariano Rivera.

"Of course [I'd like to]," Brown joked before the game.

Brown then corrected the reporter, saying he had faced Rivera in a spring training game. The at-bat didn't last very long.

"He got me out on one pitch," Brown said. "You guys know what pitch that is."

Rivera's patented cutter made its last appearance in an All-Star Game, as he pitched a perfect eighth inning. Rivera, a 43-year-old, 13-time All-Star, is retiring at the end of the season.

Wright explanation

David Wright was booed last week in Pittsburgh after his Home Run Derby picks were announced and Pirates slugger Pedro Alvarez wasn't selected. And he knows he'll likely be booed more than the normal amount the next time he arrives in Philadelphia, too.

Wright also didn't select Domonic Brown, who is third in the NL in home runs. He also bypassed Brown in favor of Alvarez when he had to pick an injury replacement.

"Trust me, I would have loved to have Domonic Brown on the team," Wright said. "It's a number thing. It's nothing personal against the city, it's nothing personal against the player . . . If I get booed a few places, so be it. I wish they would have given us 10 players."

Wright captained a National League team that once again did not finish Monday night with a Home Run Derby winner. Oakland's Yoenis Cespedes won the Derby.

An American League player has won the Derby in 6 of the last 7 years since Phillies Bobby Abreu and Ryan Howard won back-to-back crowns in 2005 and 2006.

'Late Night' fun

If starting the All-Star Game as a rookie for the host team wasn't enough of a star-making turn, New York Mets righthander Matt Harvey became the star of an uber popular viral video this week.

Harvey made an appearance on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" in a segment where he interviewed fans in Bryant Park in New York City. Harvey, out of his baseball uniform and in street clothes, asked people, some of them wearing Mets jerseys and hats, about Matt Harvey, and remarkably was not recognized by his own fans.

One of the interviewees was wearing a Mets' Harvey jersey.

"It was tough, because I really didn't know what to say at that point," said Harvey, who did a good job of keeping a straight face. " 'You're kind of wearing my jersey.' But it was a lot of fun, I had a great time."

Youth is served

Domonic Brown and Matt Harvey were among a major league-record 39 first-time All-Stars.

Two other first-timers - Miami's Jose Fernandez and Baltimore's Manny Machado - were among four players at the game age 21 or younger. The other two were sudden All-Star veterans Mike Trout and Bryce Harper, who have led a league-wide youth movement in the sport.

"It's pretty cool to have young guys come up, have a chance to play everyday and see what we can do," said the 21-year-old Trout, the Millville, N.J., native and reigning American League Rookie of the Year. "We all play fearless. We always try to do what it takes to win."

"We're definitely having fun with it," Brown said. "It's a great group here."


Ben Revere had surgery on his right foot yesterday. Afterward, the Phils said his tentative return to the field remains 6 to 8 weeks. Revere fouled a pitch off his right foot in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader . . . The game time for the Phillies-Braves game on Sunday, Aug. 4 at Citizens Bank Park was shifted to 8:05 p.m. and will be televised on ESPN.

On Twitter: @ryanlawrence21


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