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Lackey has problem with A-Rod playing

The SportsXchange

Boston Red Sox right-hander John Lackey does not believe that New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez should be allowed to play because of his suspension related to performance-enhancing drugs.

Rodriguez is appealing a 211-game ban stemming from the Biogenesis scandal.

The Red Sox are hosting the Yankees in a three-game series that starts Friday night. Lackey faces Rodriguez and the Yankees on Saturday.

"I've got a problem with it. You bet I do," Lackey told the Boston Globe on Thursday. "How is he still playing? He obviously did something and he's playing. I'm not sure that's right. ... It's pretty evident he's been doing stuff for a lot of years I've been facing him."

Lackey said Rodriguez is a topic of conversation in the Red Sox clubhouse.

"Sure, we talk about it," he said. "But talking to the media about it is a little bit different. People have strong feelings.

"He took me deep the first time I faced him as a rookie, and he admitted to doing stuff back then. There are a lot of things I want back from him."

In 2002, Lackey pitched for Anaheim Angels while Rodriguez was with the Texas Rangers. Rodriguez has admitted to using PEDs while he played for the Rangers.

Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes also spoke out against Rodriguez being allowed to play while appealing his suspension.

"I don't think so, to tell you the truth," Gomes told MassLive.com. "I can imagine being the pitcher, just knowing this guy is on or has done steroids. That's not an equal battle right there. I don't know how that would really work out. Good thing I don't pitch. It doesn't make much sense that he's still playing."

Rodriguez is the only one of the 14 players suspended in the Biogenesis scandal who appealed.
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