Sunday, March 13, 2011
Marlon Byrd vows he won't fail test
By Bruce Levine
MESA, Ariz. -- Chicago Cubs center fielder Marlon Byrd admitted Sunday that he does feel some pressure from Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig about working with Victor Conte, and Byrd believes some are waiting for him to test positive for performance enhancing drugs.
Conte, whose Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative triggered a federal investigation of steroids use and distribution among athletes, advises Byrd on strength training supplements. Selig recently asked Byrd and his agent to consider severing ties with Conte.
"[The pressure from MLB] does bother me sometimes," Byrd said. "But I think there should be pressure on everybody.
"I'm always going to watch what I take. I'm not going to say I have a bull's-eye on my back, but I think a lot of people are waiting for me to get my first positive test and miss 50 games. They'd like that just so they can say, 'We told you so.' I know that won't happen. I know I'm clean. I know the supplements I take are clean. I'm going to make sure of that."
Byrd is the top hitter in baseball during the spring, hitting close to .600.
Bruce Levine covers baseball for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.