leader-board-chemsrx-300dpijpg

mstvtbbpng
Muscle Sport Magazine

Come Clean, Roger… Even If You Aren’t

More Reasons To Show Clemens Used PEDs and Lied About It

Sergeant Joe Friday would implore “All we want are the facts, ma’am,” in what seemed to be nearly every episode of “Dragnet.” That is precisely what we all want in the Roger Clemens steroids scandal. While there may never be that proverbial ‘smoking gun’ type of evidence, it is quite clear that The Rocket is not being totally forthcoming when his staunch denials of using performance-enhancing drugs are questioned.

From his soapbox statements on “60 Minutes,” to his press conference in Houston and the Congressional Hearings from the Committee on Oversight and Reform, Clemens has made it a point to at least be consistent in attempting to distance himself from any PEDs.

The man who clearly stated that he doesn’t “give a rat’s a**” about being elected into the National Baseball Hall of Fame could not seem more like a liar, with that statement and his endless others.

JOSE, CAN YOU SEE

Perhaps the most truthful person in the entire baseball steroids scandal ended up being Jose Canseco, of all people. Looking back on his book “Juiced” (Regan Books, 2005), the former slugger and admitted steroid user speaks candidly about Clemens, but not what you may have expected. Canseco wrote, “I’ve never seen Roger Clemens do steroids, and he never told me that he did. But we’ve talked about what steroids could do for you, in which combinations, and I’ve heard him use the phrase “B12 shot” with respect to others.”

Canseco previously described how the term “B12 shot” was used as a code term for steroids by players and trainers. During his “60 Minutes” performance with Mike Wallace, Clemens stated that former trainer Brian McNamee injected him with Lidocaine and B12. He further stated “It’s for my joints and B12 I still take today.”

In the Mitchell Report, page 169 states that “Canseco told members of my investigative staff that he had numerous conversations with Clemens about the benefits of Deca-Durabolin and Winstrol and how to “cycle” and “stack” steroids.” This statement corroborates what Canseco said in his book about the conversations between him and Clemens.

Later in that same chapter, Canseco describes one of the “classic signs of steroid use – when a player’s basic performance actually improves later in his career” and that he was thinking of that at the time about Clemens. After leaving Boston, Clemens “decided to make some changes. He started working out harder. And whatever else he may have been doing to get stronger, he saw results.”

On “60 Minutes,” Wallace brought up a section from the Mitchell Report when McNamee said Clemens was training harder and dieting better during the time he used steroids in 1998. Clemens countered by stated “I trained hard my entire career.”

That’s two people saying Clemens stepped up his training – and possibly more – in the same time frame.

BRIAN’S SONG

McNamee made claims in the Mitchell Report that tie in to what Canseco had stated in his book and to the Mitchell investigators. During the summer of 1998 when all three were with the Toronto Blue Jays, McNamee said that Clemens approached him with a bottle of Winstrol and a hypodermic needle and asked him to inject him with the drug. McNamee claims to have injected Clemens with Winstrol approximately four times over a several week period.

This was reported to have taken place after Clemens spoke with Canseco about the benefits of steroids, including Winstrol.

McNamee later claimed that when he and Clemens were both with the Yankees in 2000, Clemens approached him and “made it clear that he wanted to use steroids again.” McNamee obtained the drugs and “injected Clemens with testosterone from a bottled labeled either Sustanon 250 (a form of testosterone) or Deca-Durabolin,” which is an entirely different type of anabolic steroid, but also the same as previously discussed by Canseco and Clemens.

Even in the confusion of the above statement, that would seem to tie in once again with what Canseco originally said in his book.

TO HGH OR NOT TO HGH

McNamee told the Mitchell investigators that he believed it was his idea to recommend Human Growth Hormone to Clemens in 2000. On four to six separate occasions, McNamee injected Clemens with HGH. Approximately a year later, McNamee injected Clemens again with either Sustanon 250 or Deca on four or five occasions. Clemens’ reason for switching drugs was that he did not like the “bellybutton shot” (HGH is injected into the abdomen area, as opposed to steroids, which are usually injected into the buttocks).

This is where Andy Pettitte enters the picture. Having admitted using HGH after the release of the Mitchell Report, Pettitte gave sworn statements to Congress before the hearings. The friend and former teammate of Clemens said that in 1999 or 2000, he had a conversation with Clemens in which Clemens told him that he had taken HGH. This would seem to match what McNamee said as far as the year (2000) goes and HGH usage.

During an exchange on February 13, Representative Elijah Cummings (D-MD) gets Clemens to admit that Pettitte is one of the most honest people in baseball; he has credibility and is a fine gentleman. Yet, Clemens tries to sound believable when he repeatedly stated that Pettitte did not lie, but rather “misheard” and “misremembered” their conversation.

Then, Clemens throws everyone he can under the proverbial bus to try to clear his name. He claims that when Pettitte mentioned the HGH conversations between them, Clemens was referring to his wife Debbie, who was injected by McNamee prior to a Sports Illustrated photo shoot in 2003. Wouldn’t that have been quite impossible considering the conversation in question happened either three or four years prior to that?

Nice guys finish last, they say. So figure on The Rocket to be in first place every time. Not only does he involve the missus, he also said that his late mother Bess was the first one to advise him to take B12 shots. It would be safe to assume that she was in fact speaking of the real stuff, not the secret-squirrel nickname from Canseco’s book.

NEW MEDICAL CLAIMS

A few of the quotes from Clemens on the “60 Minutes” segment bordered on comical. Mike Wallace, a well-respected journalist, must have had a hard time keeping a straight face when Clemens claimed that if he did in fact use steroids, he should have a “third ear” protruding from his forehead and that with the added strength, he should be “pulling tractors” with his teeth, and his tendons would “turn to dust.” Wallace even made Clemens ‘swear’ to his statements, and more than one viewer probably awaited a ‘scout’s honor’ claim to follow.

Sorry, Roger. To date, there have been no reported cases of any of your claims. According to “The Facts About Steroids” (Suzanne LeVert, Benchmark Books, 2005), there are many health risks and physical side effects, but not a word mentioned about growing an extra body part or tendons vaporizing. Quite the contrary, steroids actually facilitate and hasten the recovery process. You will gain strength, but hardly the ‘Superman’ amount that it would take to pull an object that routinely weighs approximately 20,000 pounds, such as a tractor.

Concerning Clemens’ ability to perform at such a high level into his forties, Mici Fluegge (bodybuilder/personal trainer and the inventor of Stretch-A-Minute) said, “More than likely, he would not. And he wouldn’t be as big as he is. There is a genetic cap on how big you can get naturally.”

GET IT OFF YOUR CHEST

Before he makes matters worse, Clemens should just jump on the sword and say he did it already. Out of all the baseball players who have been linked to steroids, only the ones who plead the Fifth Amendment or denied it have looked bad. Everyone else has kind of been forgiven and the ‘let’s move on’ attitude has been connected to them.

It may be too late for Clemens, and he will have to live with the fact his legacy will always include these accusations.

Unless we all “misremember” them.

Archived from the May 2008 issue of “New York Sportscene” magazine. Illustration by Johnny Pennisi.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *