David Ortiz wanted baseball fans to believe he was "different from the rest," said Howard Bryant in ESPN.com. But now The New York Times has reported that Ortiz and Manny Ramirez—both key players on the Red Sox's 2004 and 2007 World Series championship teams —were on the list of 104 Major League Baseball players who tested positive for performance-enhancing substances in 2003. "Barring a spectacular, unprecedented exoneration, Ortiz will have lost the bank of goodwill and trust he spent years accruing. At least he has plenty of company."
Not everyone is so quick to judge David Ortiz, said Ron Borges in the Boston Herald. Ortiz says the first time he heard about his positive test for steroids was when a New York Times reporter told him about it Thursday. Nomar Garciaparra, a former teammate, said he'd sooner believe Ortiz than someone who leaked the allegation to the Times. "You're going to ruin a guy's reputation," Garciappara said, "and you don't know what's real and what wasn't"
If David Ortiz really did test positive, said Jay Mariotti in Fanhouse, he'll become "the biggest steroids fraud of all" in baseball's ongoing steroid scandal. "Wasn't it just days ago when he portrayed himself as the Last Clean Man in His Sport, when he urged Major League Baseball to test every player as often as possible, in and out of season? And if someone comes up positive, ban him for an entire 162-game schedule?"
"Instead of finger pointing," said Richard Cato in Reuters, "we must agree how to move forward." The slow leaking of names has gone on too long. It's time to release all the remaining names on the list of players who tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs, so we'll know who the truly clean players are. They're the ones who will "restore faith in the game."