“I don’t want to be a distraction to my team and there’s things that they’re trying to do on the field to be ready for the coming season. I do want to tell you guys that at the appropriate time I will address the matter.” In less than two weeks of workouts with his new team after signing a five-year, $50 million contract this offseason, Matthews is getting attention for all the wrong reasons. On Tuesday, the Albany (N.Y.) Times Union connected Matthews, through unnamed sources, to an investigation and raid of at least two internet-based pharmacies that have been supplying, among other things, human growth hormone. At the start of Wednesday morning’s meeting, Matthews immediately apologized for being associated with a possible team distraction. Moreno seemed impressed with the gesture. “Gary immediately walked in and apologized for any distraction and said he would try to get it resolved as quickly as possible,” Moreno said. TEMPE, Ariz. – Gary Matthews Jr. had a busier morning that usual Wednesday, addressing a newspaper article that connected him with a performance-enhancing drug scandal and then meeting with the club’s top brass. After meeting with club officials Tuesday, Matthews had a discussion Wednesday morning with manager Mike Scioscia, general manager Bill Stoneman, owner Arte Moreno and vice president of communications Tim Mead. Moreno added that the meeting wasn’t to ask Matthews if he has used any type of performance-enhancing substance. “We had a meeting really just to basically tell him how we felt, that we’re not going to ask you any questions until you’re able to tell us, but we’d like you to be straight up with us,” Moreno said. “I felt it was important for him to know he has our support. “For me, I like to be proactive and make sure that we communicate well. I just stressed that the communication was the most important thing here.” Stoneman declined to say if Matthews had a clause in his contract that offered the team recourse in case he was found to have used performance-enhancing substances. Stoneman said the team considers the language in all contracts as private. Manager Mike Scioscia, who has maintained a strong stance against performance-enhancing drugs, admitted that the Matthews situation has the potential for distraction. “There are things you’re going to deal with during course of the season, whether it’s a guy upset over playing time or a guy not performing and it becomes an issue,” Scioscia said. “Things come into the clubhouse, and you have to keep moving forward, playing ball, and we’re going to do that.” Matthews played in an intrasquad game Tuesday less than an hour after finding out that he had been tied to the scandal and he is expected to start in center field and lead off in today’s Cactus League opener against the Kansas City Royals. To this point, Scioscia seems satisfied that Matthews is not burdened by the situation. “Anyone who signs a big contract, the one thing you want to put into a player’s mind is, you’re the same player you were before, you don’t have to go above and beyond, just bring your game and play it,” Scioscia said. “This is obviously taking some things a step further, and Gary will have to deal with it, and we will as an organization.” Asked how how his name might have been linked to the situation, Matthews did not have an answer. “That’s exactly what we’re working on right now, gathering information,” Matthews said. “I will address the matter again at the appropriate time and I just wanted to just express that I will come out and talk to you guys about it when the appropriate time comes. I want you guys to respect my position and I don’t want to become a distraction for my team and my teammates.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “I just want to tell you guys that I’m not really in a position to answer any specific questions on (Tuesday’s) story,” Matthews told a media gathering that was at least twice as large as normal. “I do want to say that I do expect it to resolve itself here in the near future, pretty soon. “I’ve got my representative (agent Scott Leventhal) looking for more information on it and to find out stuff and until we find out more stuff. I just can’t comment on it. I ask that you guys respect my position on it.