Manny Ramirez's positive urine test showed an elevated testosterone level, and a lab used a test to determine whether the hormone was naturally produced to build evidence against him, ESPN.com reported Monday.
Baseball asked the World Anti-Doping Agency lab in Montreal to perform a carbon isotope ratio test, which determines whether testosterone is natural or synthetic, the Web site reported. MLB then asked Ramirez to produce medical records, as required under the drug agreement.
Ramirez's test had a testosterone-epitestosterone ratio between 4:1 and 10:1, ESPN.com reported. Typically, a person naturally produces the hormones at a ratio of 1:1; tests of 4:1 or greater are flagged.
Ramirez's side was prepared to argue to an arbitrator that the synthetic testosterone was caused by the Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder taking the steroids precursor DHEA, ESPN.com and the Union-Tribune in San Diego reported Saturday. DHEA is not banned by MLB.
A possible appeal was dropped before a scheduled Wednesday meeting after the medical records turned over included a prescription for the fertility drug HCG, or human chorionic gonadotrophin, ESPN.com reported. Some athletes who have used steroids have taken HCG to help restart natural testosterone production. Because HCG is banned by baseball, the sport based Ramirez's suspension on the use of that drug.
Ramirez was banned for 50 games Thursday. Barring postponements, he's eligible to return July 3.