Eliezer Alfonso's Suspension Draws Strong Reactions

May 1, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Alfonzo's suspension took effect Wednesday night, game 3 of an 8 game home stand. News of his admitted cheating has not only upset fans at Chukchansi Park but also high school baseball players who look up to these stars.

For seniors at Edison, high school's the last time many of these teens will play competitive baseball. But for outfielder Allen Riley two scholarship opportunities have guaranteed he'll continue playing at either University of the Pacific or the University of Oregon. Riley said, "It feels good to know. You know you're going somewhere to play. So I mean it will be a good experience."

But Riley knows there are those out there who take shortcuts in order to improve performance on the field. Riley said he was disappointed to learn Grizzly's catcher Eliezer Alfonzo tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. "I mean basically he's made it. So I don't understand why he'd want to do something like that?"

Under Alfonzo's suspension he's allowed to practice with the Grizzlies. However he's not allowed to sit with the team when the game starts. He's only allowed to sit in the bleachers where there are plenty of upset fans.

Jay Van Meter said, "Disappointed in him and the situation." And Kathy Grider said, "I know they feel they have to do it to feel better because it's so competitive. Now it's become a business rather than a sport."

"Is it all about just being successful or is it about being a good person?" Meanwhile back at the Edison Tiger's practice Cliff Rold said he takes pride in coaching a drug-free program and giving the sport the dignity and respect it deserves. "If you do it right you can make it and I think in baseball today you gonna begin to see all those kids who did it right all these years they're gonna come back on the main stage."

Coincidentally coach Rold's cousin is the man called up to replace Alfonso. Dayton Buller is a former Yosemite High and City College catcher who's expected to suit up with the team Thursday night.


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