Roger Clemens and Steroids
Names are being released almost every day as we inch closer to the release of George Mitchell’s investigation into the use of performance-enhancing drugs in baseball. Jose Guillen, Matt Williams, and Ismael Valdez were named this week in connection with a Florida anti-aging clinic that was the target of federal investigators this year.
Over at SI.com, veteran writer E.M. Swift, who has broken several stories on the steroids beat, brought up the name Roger Clemens.
Clemens has been under suspicion before. His well-documented career revival coincided with a new training regimen after he left Boston in 1997. As Swift points out, Clemens has racked up 43.5 percent of his wins since he turned 35, a fairly astonishing figure.
He was also named in Jose Canseco’s book, but the speculation really took off after journeyman reliever Jason Grimsley named names in an affidavit, that have since been redacted, and published reports named Clemens and friend/teammate Andy Pettitte. However, those reports were called into question by a U.S. attorney.
The link here is Brian McNamee, a trainer who continued to work with Clemens and Pettitte until this year, and was also linked to the Grimsley story. Swift has a source who says:
Separately, according to a source who used to work with McNamee, federal investigators have pursued a money trail through computer files that have led them directly back to Clemens and teammate Andy Pettitte, who also employed McNamee as his personal trainer. The noose has tightened, according to the source, and it will all come out before long. (Clemens and Pettitte couldn’t be reached for comment.)
The Mitchell Report will either be the match that lights the powder keg or the greatest dud since Evel Knievel tried to jump Snake River Canyon. It wouldn’t surprise us in the slightest if Clemens’ name was somehow attached, nor would it be a shock if several Red Sox heroes of the past two World Series were in there either.