EXCLUSIVE: Adderall Is Baseball's New Drug Problem, Says Doc, As Charges Fly In Player's Divorce

Mar. 8 2010, Published 7:51 a.m. ET

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A major league baseball player’s bitter divorce has lifted the lid on the sport’s new drug problem – players abusing the drug Adderall. was first to report that the estranged wife of Kansas City Royals player Jason Kendall was raising questions about his use of Adderall, a drug whose use has skyrocketed among pro players ever since the league banned amphetamines.

EXCLUSIVE: Drug Allegations Against Baseball Star In Divorce

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Kendall and his wife Chantel are slugging it out in Los Angeles Superior Court and her lawyer Neal Hersch told “In court papers it has been alleged there are questions about Jason’s use of Adderall, for which he has a prescription.”

This divorce may be the lynchpin that exposes baseball’s post-steroid drug scandal. Dr. Joseph Haraszti, a California psychiatrist consulted by, says the statistics of major league players with prescriptions for Adderall simply don’t add up.

Major league baseball players' use of Adderall has multiplied by a factor of 4 since the league’s 2005 ban on amphetamines. Adderall is a psychostimulant  that reportedly helps players concentrate and “lock in” as they play.

VIDEO: Chantel Kendall Leaves Court

Dr. Haraszti exclusively told "The players use this as a performance enhancing drug which allows them to concentrate better and also helps them to get over their grueling 162 game schedule they face during the season."

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And despite the fact that players obtain prescriptions for Adderall, Dr. Haraszti believes the prescriptions do not prove the players have a real need for the drug. "The players go to the doctors knowing full well they don't have ADD but the doctors go and prescribe it for them and make the diagnoses for ADD and the question is, are the diagnoses legitimate? ... most likely the majority of them are not," he said.

He also explains the number of baseball players diagnosed with ADD doesn't make sense. "The population incident is about 8% among children ...and about half of the kids diagnosed with ADD outgrow their symptoms by their early 20's so only about 4%  go on to have the symptoms into adulthood.

“And among baseball players this statistic jumps to around 8%or 10% which makes no sense because it is more than twice the amount of ADD than in the normal population.

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“And these diagnoses all came after amphetamines were banned."

The doctor also points out it is unlikely for such a high percentage of athletes to be diagnosed with ADD as adults. “It is very unlikely to just get ADD,” Dr.  Haraszti told

“You have it as a child and I often interview the parents  or get school records of my patients to find out their past to make a real diagnoses of ADD."

Baseball suffered a severe blow to its reputation as the steroid era was exposed, with players like Mark McGwire finally admitting to bulking up with the drug.

Now, Jason Kendall’s divorce, could open the door to baseball’s new drug scandal. One person familiar with the situation told “There is at least one pharmacy that I know of where many baseball players go to get their Adderall prescriptions filled. These guys are taking the drug to help them perform.

“This is baseball’s dirty little new secret and it’s about to be dragged out into the open.”


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