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Mets: Drug Use Not Rampant

September 21, 2002|From Associated Press

New York Met General Manager Steve Phillips denied there is widespread drug use on the team after a report that at least seven players smoked marijuana this season.

"In my opinion, there is not rampant drug use on our major league roster," Phillips said Friday.

Tony Tarasco, Mark Corey and reliever Grant Roberts were identified by Newsday as among those who had used marijuana. The paper, which did not name any other Mets, cited unidentified sources close to the team.

"I guarantee you no one was in uniform and smoking marijuana, unless they were running around with a whole lot of Visine in their eyes," Met Manager Bobby Valentine said. "I grew up in the '60s. I think I could tell by looking in a guys' eyes if he was smoking dope."

Valentine said he couldn't understand why a player would use marijuana before a game.

"Marijuana is not a performance enhancer. I don't think anybody would want to get in there and try to dodge a 95-mph fastball," he said.

"Maybe I'm naive. Maybe afterward. I don't know. I don't party with the guys."

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