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Updated: MLB investigating Alex Rodriguez’s link with new doctor

Jul 24, 2013, 7:41 PM EDT

a-rod doc

A new player suddenly emerged in the bizarre Alex Rodriguez saga on Wednesday when Dr. Michael L. Gross and told Mike Francesa on WFAN that he had reviewed A-Rod’s MRI and detected no quad injury. In so doing, he contradicted the diagnosis of a Grade 1 quad strain from Yankees doctor Christopher Ahmad.

Reports have since indicated that Rodriguez gave the doctor permission to talk to the media, which has led some to believe that Rodriguez is trying to force the Yankees’ hands and get back into the lineup. Other reports have made it clear that Rodriguez needed Yankees approval to receive a second opinion and never got it, meaning he’s broken a rule from the CBA.

But Gross is a mystery in all this. From the New York Daily News:

According to a source with close knowledge of the situation, however, the Yankees have never heard of Gross, and do not believe Gross examined the same MRI looked at by Ahmad on Sunday after Rodriguez complained for the second straight week of quad tightness.

Further, said the source, New York Presbyterian Hospital did not release results from the MRI it conducted on Rodriguez and the Yankees do not believe he was examined by Gross.

If that’s the case, then perhaps A-Rod didn’t get an official second opinion and is in the clear, at least in that regards.

But what about Gross? He’s listed as a graduate of the New York University School of Medicine and as an orthopedic surgeon for Hackensack UMC. He’s also the the Co-Founder and Medical Director of the Active Center for Health & Wellness, located in Hackensack, New Jersey. According to its website, the top program offered by the place is “Anti-Aging & Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy.”

Gross’s own bio states that he’s “he is currently enrolled in a fellowship in anti-aging and restorative medicine and is working towards board certification form the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine.” And the New York Daily News is now reporting that Gross was reprimanded by the New Jersey Attorney General earlier this year for “failing to adequately ensure proper patience treatment involving the prescribing of hormones, including steroids.”

The NYDN further goes on to say that MLB is already investigating A-Rod’s relationship with the doctor.

Gross says the reprimand was the result of an innocent mistake:

“One of the people who worked [at the Active Center for Health & Wellness] was a physician who completed medical school, who finished a residency, but he wasn’t a licensed physician in New Jersey. We never maintained that he was a physician, but in an unrelated investigation of a lot of wellness centers, the board came across that,” Gross said on SNY. “I met with the board. I received what you saw. It’s a closed matter. But it has nothing to do with Alex. I really don’t think it’s germane to this. (Rodriguez) has never been a patient here. He’s never been treated here. We don’t prescribe anabolic steroids. We never have. We prescribe what’s called bio-identical hormones, for men with low testosterone, like what you see on television all the time. We prescribe testosterone.”

MLB won’t like that much, either. One of the things Anthony Bosch was known to offer at Biogenesis were testosterone troches, which are lozenges that were placed under the tongue. Even if Rodriguez has never set foot in the Active Center for Health & Wellness, the association was a bad idea.


Update: Yankees GM Brian Cashman has issued a statement on the Rodriguez situation. Here it is in full:

“I heard via a text message this afternoon from Alex Rodriguez that he had retained a doctor to review his medical situation. In media reports, we have since learned that the doctor in question has acknowledged that he did not examine Mr. Rodriguez and that he was not retained to do a comprehensive medical examination of Mr. Rodriguez. Contrary to the Basic Agreement, Mr. Rodriguez did not notify us at any time that he was seeking a second opinion from any doctor with regard to his quad strain.

“As you know, it is the Yankees’ desire to have Alex return to the lineup as soon as possible. And we have done everything to try and accomplish this.

“As early as Friday, July 12, when I suggested to Alex that we move his rehab from Tampa to Triple-A Scranton (at Buffalo), Alex complained for the first time of “tightness” in his quad and therefore refused to consent to the transfer of his assignment. Again, last Sunday, Alex advised that he had stiffness in his quad and should not play on Sunday or Monday. We sent Alex to NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital for an MRI which evidenced a Grade 1 strain.

“As always, we will follow the rules and regulations set forth in the Basic Agreement, and will again re-evaluate Alex in Tampa tomorrow, as our goal is to return him to the lineup as soon as he is medically capable of doing so.”

  1. jayscarpa - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:49 PM

    There is a Michael Gross who is an orthopedic surgeon in NJ. Not the same guy as in your photo. There are a lot of Michael Gross’ out there.

    • Kevin S. - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:56 PM

      According to the bio, it’s the same guy.

      • jayscarpa - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:04 PM

        The quack from the wellness center is board certified in ortho surgery and sports medicine? Yikes

    • Matthew Pouliot - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:46 PM

      Yes, it’s the same guy, according to linked Daily News article. He seems to be a respected orthopedic surgeon with a side practice that’s, well, open for interpretation. Anyway, I’ve updated the entry a bit.

      • daveitsgood - Jul 25, 2013 at 12:03 AM

        These headline snafus seem to happen with you a lot. Should we speak to Craig about getting a copy editor for you?

      • jayscarpa - Jul 25, 2013 at 7:54 AM

        A lot of doctors do the ‘side business’ thing. Neurologists are infamous for opening ‘Sleep Centers’; cardiologists open ‘rehab clinics’; anesthetists open ‘pain centers’. The side businesses are cash cows.

        I’ve never seen a surgeon open a wellness clinic. They’re often opened GP’s or just holistic type people. Lots of money in that.

    • Glenn - Jul 24, 2013 at 11:05 PM

      Turns out it was Sam Gross, the cartoonist.

  2. deathmonkey41 - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    This is actually the doctor that A-Rod went to for the second opinion…first he had to sell his mansion, now he’s resorting to this. It’s sad to see someone who has fallen so far…

  3. chrisdtx - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    The guy from Family Ties?

    • aceshigh11 - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:10 PM

      He was so badass in Tremors.

  4. deathmonkey41 - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:53 PM

    He could have also went to see the guy who played Michael J. Fox’s father in Family Ties. Not a good choice- I would have went to see Majorie instead.

    • hojo20 - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:24 PM

      Interesting fact….Mr & Mrs Keaton were both born on 6/21/47

  5. slartibartfast4242 - Jul 24, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Lolz would be so funny if it turns out A-Rod went to his dealer for the second opinion.

    • beaglemix - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:00 PM

      it just proves no matter how pathetic it looks now it is going to continue to look worse with every breath a-rod has left in him.

  6. wheels579 - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    Francesa was asked by a caller on the air how he got in touch with this guy and Francesa told the caller rather rudely that it was none of his business. Not that Francesa being rude to a caller is ever breaking news, but its fair to question why anyone would put a doctor on the air to talk about someone else’s personal health without said person present.

    • aceshigh11 - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:12 PM

      It’d be breaking news if Francesca WASN’T rude to a caller.

      I do listen to him when I drive home from work some days, but he’s a prick of the highest order.

  7. paperlions - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:12 PM

    Sorry, any “doctor” (certified or not) who works at, founds, or owns a clinic whose primary focus is “anti-aging” is just in the business of separating stupid people from their money.

    • Reflex - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:18 PM

      Yeah, it amazes me how many people buy into this and most of the vitamin quackery out there. Its like the 1800’s and snake oil are all forgotten..

      • beaglemix - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:02 PM

        there’s a snake oil for sale in every generation.

    • sabatimus - Jul 24, 2013 at 10:51 PM

      Why apologize for the truth?

      • paperlions - Jul 24, 2013 at 10:53 PM

        Well, it was just in case any of the people that were going to read it might be among the stupid people that visit such sham establishments…..I guess.

  8. chip56 - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    “Dr. Gross currently maintains privileges at Hackensack University Medical Center, where he is the Chief of the Division of Sports Medicine and the Orthopedic Director of The Sports Medicine Institute. He also has privileges at The Valley Hospital in Ridgewood and Hudson Crossing Surgical Center in Fort Lee, New Jersey.”

    Not a quack

    • jayscarpa - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:29 PM

      Wow, it is the same guy.

    • njphan - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:07 AM


      This guy is a total quack, and he needs to be talked to by the state. I looked him up. You should too. He is NOT on staff at The Valley Hospital. Call them. 201-447-8020. That’s the number to the staff office that I looked up and CALLED. He hasn’t had privileges there for 5 years they said, but they wouldn’t say why. Just that he isnt there. Call them. Ask them.

      So I said, Hmm, ok, let’s see what other lies this a-hole has been up to. I called Hackensack department. Finally got transferred to the orthopedist department. I asked about the Chief of Sports. DOESN’T EXIST! For reals! The lady said there was no chief of sports, that that position doesnt even exist. And the chief of the department is Michael KELLY, not Michael GROSS.

      I swear this story could BLOW UP!. A quack doctor, sued by the state for giving “hormones” in his office, now out there doing press for a patient he NEVER SAW? Are you joking me??

  9. chip56 - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    Look, I’m a Yankee fan and I’ve always been a Yankee fan and always will be a Yankee fan, but what the Yankees are doing in this regard is disgusting.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:52 PM

      Agree 100%. Told my wife I’m about one more disgusting move from the Yanks away from not rooting for them anymore. This is getting pathetic from the “marquee” franchise.

  10. chip56 - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:40 PM

    If it turns out that the Yankees are (as Mike Francesa speculated) doing this in an attempt to keep Alex off the field to save money regardless of him being able to help the club then I’m going to have to re-evaluate how I spend my entertainment dollars with regard to this team.

  11. Caught Looking - Jul 24, 2013 at 8:44 PM

    “We prescribe what’s called bio-identical hormones, for men with low testosterone, like what you see on television all the time. We prescribe testosterone.”

    Perhaps used to offset the effects of the fertility and other drugs/PED’s?

  12. churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:03 PM

    Here’s a novel idea. How about an apology for an NYU educated doctor being called a quack because you couldn’t be arsed to determine which was the correct doctor?

    No, just going to let it slide while the url still calls him a quack….

    • njphan - Jul 25, 2013 at 11:13 AM

      Wait, what? This guy went to med school at NYU, so he can’t be a quack? How does that make sense?

      This is the same guy. This guy Michael Gross, MD is apparently a media whore. He gives hormones out, lies on his website as to his qualifications, and based on his reviews is just horrible.

  13. tbutler704 - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:03 PM

    Dear disaffected Yankee fans….

    Meet the Mets, meet the Mets. Step right up and greet he Mets!

    • Kevin S. - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:09 PM

      The Wilpons are still incompetent buffoons. I’m not exactly at the point of abandoning team loyalty, but if I ever did it would be for the Rays.

      • tbutler704 - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:29 PM

        Ha. Maybe the Rays will move closer to town. Brooklyn needs its own MLB team (yes I realize the Mets & Yanks would never let it happen…but one can dream)

      • Kevin S. - Jul 25, 2013 at 7:17 AM

        Yeah, there’s that too. If the A’s manage to force their way to San Jose, I’d be shocked if the Rays aren’tin Brooklyn or northern New Jersey once their lease ends.

    • aceshigh11 - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:14 PM

      Actually, I think it goes…

      “Meet the Mets, beat the Mets, step right up and defeat the Mets”

    • sdelmonte - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:59 PM

      Come for the baseball, stay for the craft beer and Matt Harvey.

      • Kevin S. - Jul 25, 2013 at 7:19 AM

        That’s probably happening anyway.

  14. mrpinkca - Jul 24, 2013 at 9:40 PM

    Jesus, what a sh*tshow.

  15. desal2ds - Jul 24, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    I’m done with the Yankees they have absolutely disgusted me. I can’t stand A-Rod but I hope the Yankees have to pay every cent of what’s owed to him. The squeeze us fans dry. So a little dose of their own medicine. I love it. It must infuriate them how A-Rod has used the media to make the Yankees look so bad. Yankees are now trying to ruin this doctors credibility by bringing up a reprimand he got from NJ over nonsense. Yankees you are pathetic. You cowards couldn’t even go on Mike today to answer up to this mess.

  16. romoscollarbone - Jul 25, 2013 at 1:34 AM

    Jack ass.

  17. nbjays - Jul 25, 2013 at 7:01 AM

    Someone needs to make this whole thing into a soap opera or something. You just can’t make this shit up.

  18. jayscarpa - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:14 AM

    How is the Yankees management in any way the bad guys in this? Look at Cashman’s statement. Everything he says in it was reported in the news at the time it happened.

    “As early as Friday, July 12, when I suggested to Alex that we move his rehab from Tampa to Triple-A Scranton (at Buffalo), Alex complained for the first time of “tightness” in his quad and therefore refused to consent to the transfer of his assignment. Again, last Sunday, Alex advised that he had stiffness in his quad and should not play on Sunday or Monday. We sent Alex to NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital for an MRI which evidenced a Grade 1 strain.”

    ARod has been a liar and cheat but we are going to take his word on this? Ridiculous.

    • cshearing - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:24 AM

      Yeah, I do not get it either. I usually despise the Yankees, but I do not see anything wrong with what they have done. A-rod is using lies to make them look bad, and it is the Yankees’ fault?

  19. njphan - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    This guy Dr. Michael Gross is apparently just a scumbag.

    Sued for using hormones, administered by a non-doctor in his office.

    His webpage says he is on staff at Valley Hospital. Well, he’s not. I called. He without any question does NOT have privileges there. Call them and ask.

    He says on his website that he’s the Chief of Sports at Hackensack. DOESN’T EXIST! Made up. Again, check yourself.

    These are facts. You can look them up yourself. Someone needs to run with this.

  20. offseasonblues - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    That picture looks like Bobby Valentine.

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