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Washington Nationals' Ryan Zimmerman sues Al Jazeera America over "alleged defamation"

According to a Reuters report on Twitter, since confirmed by the Washington Post's Barry Svrluga, Washington Nationals' first baseman Ryan Zimmerman is suing Al Jazeera America for defamation after he was tied to PEDs in an undercover report by the network.

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

In an investigative report by Al Jazeera released last month, an Austin, Texas-based pharmacist named Charles Sly alleged that he supplied "a bunch of football players... and a bunch of baseball players," with "Delta-2," which is "... a hormone supplement that is 'steroidal in nature' but is not an anabolic steroid, according to online product descriptions," as Huffington Post writers Ryan Grimm and Travis Waldron wrote at the time.

Sly, in the undercover video recorded by Al Jazeera, named a number of NFL players as clients and two major league players, "Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard and Washington Nationals infielder Ryan Zimmerman as players who received the drug from him."

Zimmerman "denied using the drugs to the [Al Jazeera] network," according to the Huffington Post report, which went on to say that, "Sly, when pressed by Al Jazeera, backtracked, saying that his claims about supplying the drugs to athletes were 'false and incorrect.'"

Sly, in a video posted on YouTube, said, ".... the statements on any recordings or communications that Al Jazeera plans to air are absolutely false and incorrect."

"To be clear," he added, "I am recanting any such statements and there is no truth to any statement of mine that Al Jazeera plans to air.

"Under no circumstances should any of those statements, recordings or communications be aired."

In a statement made to MLBTraderumors.com, William Burck, of Quinn Emanuel, attorney for both Howard and Zimmerman, said it was, "inexcusable and irresponsible that Al Jazeera would provide a platform and broadcast outright lies about Mr. Howard and Mr. Zimmerman.":

"The extraordinarily reckless claims made against our clients in this report are completely false and rely on a source who has already recanted his claims.

"We will go to court to hold Al Jazeera and other responsible parties accountable for smearing our clients’ good names."

According to a Reuters report tonight, Zimmerman has filed suit against Al Jazeera America:

Zimmerman, as quoted by the Washington Post's Barry Svrluga, issued the following statement on the suit:

There was also this report from the New York Times today: