Last night in to this morning was snow and ice nonstop….. there’s a ‘code red’ on the military base where I work which means that I’m not even allowed to report to work. Very nice! This has given me the time to watch Roger Clemens crucify himself in his Congressional testimony. Here’s a brief (and almost certainly incomplete) list of the evidence damning the guy to PED purgatory:
- In JosÃ© Canseco’s book, Juiced: Wild Times, Rampant ‘Roids, Smash Hits & How Baseball Got Big, Canseco writes that Clemens had expert knowledge about steroids and suggested that he probably used steroids, based on the improvement in his performance after leaving the Red Sox.
- Pitcher Jason Grimsley and Andy Pettite both named him as a user of performance enhancing drugs. To the best of my knowledge, neither stood to gain anything from this disclosure.
- According to a 20-page search warrant affidavit signed by IRS Special Agent Jeff Novitzky, Grimsley told investigators he obtained amphetamines, anabolic steroids and human growth hormone from someone recommended to him by former Yankees trainer Brian McNamee. McNamee was a personal strength coach for Clemens and Pettitte.
- McNamee was hired by Clemens in 1997, the year in which he had one of the best seasons of his career.
- In the recently released Mitchel Report on the use of performance enhancing drugs in pro baseball, Clemens name was implicated as one of the biggest users and his name was mentioned 84 times. He was supposedly given the opportunity to respond to the allegations before the findings were published but never did.
- Clemens performed at VERY high levels of his sport far beyond what would normally be expected.
As I write, Clemens is getting drilled about his steroid and HGH use by a Congressional Committee. He’s denying ever using any illegal performance enhancing substances. I don’t believe him one bit. What’s sad is that I think that Clemens probably did go through most of his career naturally and without illegal assistance. In fact, I think he would be going to the Baseball Hall of Fame as one of the greatest pitchers of all time even without the stuff. Instead it looks like he got greedy in an attempt to lengthen his career. This is no doubt a tempting option as players in all major professional sports make their most money in the twilight of their careers (because salaries inflate at a greater rate than a players decline). Like I said though it’s sad and I think the guy is going to get fried. He should have just fessed up and said I did it, I made a mistake, and I’m sorry. That’s what 100m champion Dwain Chambers did and in many track and field circles he’s being forgiven for his mistakes. That’s what baseball player Jason Giambi did and he’s been accepted back with open arms. People who denied it though….they’re the ones getting in the most trouble. Marion Jones ring a bell? Barry Bonds? Unfortunately, recent history has indicated that:
- There’s little benefit to surrounding yourself with people of shady character (see Tim Montgomery, Victor Conte, and Greg Anderson). At the very least you will be guilty by association. Right or wrong it’s true.
- Where there’s smoke there’s probably some fire. It might not be your fire but because of the preceding point and others, there seems to be a hint of truth to every rumor.
- Those that deny culpability the hardest are likely the most guilty (see Marion Jones and soon to be Barry Bonds)