Tag: Roger Clemens
Now that we have grown used to professional players and athletes from all sorts of backgrounds and distinct sports using performance enhancing drugs, it shouldn’t come as a huge surprise that Roger Clemens, the former baseball superstar, was acquitted on all charges against him for lying and obstructing Congress when he denied using performance enhancing drugs as a fast-balling pitcher. It seems that juror didn’t need too much time to deliberate and bring back a verdict. As a matter of fact, he outcome ended a 10-week trial that capped an expensive, five-year investigation into one of the greatest pitchers in the history of baseball.
According to the press release, the 49-year-old Roger Clemens, was charged with two counts of perjury, three counts of making false statements and one count of obstructing Congress when he testified at a deposition and at a nationally televised hearing in February 2008. The charges centered on his repeated denials that he used steroids and human growth hormone during a 24-year career. To put his performance into perspective, over his lengthy professional career, Clemenes produced 354 wins and a record seven Cy Young Awards. Now, this is just a terrible blow for the government’s effort to legally pursuit athletes who have been accused of illegal drug use.
This comes just a year after a San Francisco Court found home run King Larry Bonds only guilty in one count of obstruction of justice, after another lengthy and costly 7-year investigation. Sure enough, the jury deadlocked on whether Bonds lied to a grand jury when he denied knowingly taking performance-enhancing drugs. If you ask me, it’s just a bunch of b.s. but heck, Bond got away with it. But that’s not the end of the government underachieving in a sports fraud investigation. Last week we talked on about Lance Armstrong and his two-year, multicontinent investigation that looked into possible drug use by the 7-time Tour de France winner. The investigation was closed, though the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency filed formal accusations last week that could strip him of his wins and put an end to the sport’s most controversial athlete.
Despite the evidence given to the jury by Clemen’s longtime strength coach, Brian McNamee, who said he personally injected Clemens with steroids in 1998, 2000 and 2001 and with HGH in 2000. McNamee also offered the jury a needle and other materials he said were from a steroids injection of Clemens in 2001. That is a little hard to bring forth in a jury considering he states that the needle and the rest of the materials were stored inside a beer can and put in a box for over six years. The other evidence the prosecutors had against Clemens included the testimony of former teammate Andy Pettitte who recalled a conversation in which Clemens supposedly admitted using HGH, but Pettitte said under cross-examination that there was a “50-50″ chance that he had misheard.
It is hard to know what kind of hurt this is going to place over Clemens legacy as a professional pitcher. But we are going to get a good idea next year when Clemens’ name appears on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time. His statistics alone would normally make give him a straight pass into baseball greatest honor. Voters, on the other hand, have been reluctant to induct premier players, such as Mark McGwire and Rafael Palmeiro, whose careers were tainted by allegations of drug use.