Roger Clemens pled "not guilty" yesterday at his arraignment on charges of lying to congress about using steroids.
I'll admit, it looks like Clemens did use performance enhancing drugs. Just look at his stats. Like Barry Bonds, people just don't get better in baseball in their late 30's and early 40's. The stats say he used steroids.
Then you have Andy Pettitte who, when questioned, said Roger told him he used HGH. Pettitte admitted he dabbled in HGH to return from an injury sooner.
Of course, the star witness will be Clemens' personal trainer Brian McNamee. McNamee, a weaselly type, is a known liar and drug pusher. He was questioned by police, but not charged, in an alleged sexual assault in 2001 after a woman ingested GHB, also known as the date rape drug.
McNamee also claims he has syringes and needles used by Clemens that prove the Rocket used steroids. What kind of guy saves that stuff unless they have other motives down the line. Like extortion perhaps? Furthermore, if he was Clemens trainer, would it be that hard to get samples of his DNA or blood and frame him in some manner?
I'm not saying Clemens is innocent. He's far from the choir boy he has portrayed. But is it out of the realm of possiblity that McNamee, when he was fired by Clemens, decided to frame his former friend and employer? McNamee is hardly a paragon of virtue. He's a piece of crap. Why would it be so hard to believe that he has it out for Clemens?
If I'm Clemens defense team, I go after McNamee and destroy whatever credibility he has left.
Also, we have questioned in the past, if an athlete is truly innocent of using performance enhancing drugs, they why don't they sue when they are accused of doing so?
We've seen people named in Jose Canseco's book as steroid users threaten to sue. We've heard athletes say they are considering a lawsuit. Well, Clemens is the one athlete who had fought these allegations.
Maybe it was a foolhardy decision by Clemens, a decision that might have him end up in prison.
Again, while we suspect Clemens used PED's, he very well could be found innocent of these perjury charges. If that's the case, good for Roger. But his reputation, either way is shot. He's the new baseball pariah along with Bonds, Palmiero, Dykstra and to a lesser degree now, McGwire, since he's back in the game as Cardinals hitting coach and he finally came clean this spring about his steroid use.
Another pariah, Pete Rose, remains out of the game for gambling. Here's a question for you to ponder. If steroids were rampant when Rose played the game, do you think he would have used them? "Hell yeah," is my answer. I have no doubt that Charley Hustle would have used steroids. At least we know Rose's baseball stats are legit. Can't say that about anybody who played in the steroid era.