The Rocket is on his way back to the mound.
Roger Clemens, who has not pitched since 2007 with the New York Yankees, has agreed to sign with the Sugar Land Skeeters, according to Fox 26 in Houston.
According to the report, the 50-year-old seven-time Cy Young Award winner is slated to start Saturday. Team officials told the station that Clemens participated in a full workout Monday and his fastball was clocked at 87 miles per hour.
The Skeeters are a Houston area independent league club that competes in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball. The league and team have no affiliation to MLB.
Houston Astros bullpen catcher Javier Bracamonte caught Clemens’ workout and told Fox 26 his former teammate still has it.
“He’s in such great shape it’s ridiculous,” Bracamonte said. “He’s the same guy he was before.”
In June, Clemens was acquitted of charges in the government’s perjury case against him. During a lengthy and highly-publicized trial, Clemens and his lawyers maintained that he did not lie to Congress when he stated he had never taken performance-enhancing drugs. The verdict was unanimous.
“It has been a hard five years,” an emotional Clemens said moments after the verdict was delivered. “All of you who know me in the media and followed my career, I put a lot of hard work into that career.”
Now it seems that career might not be over just yet.
If a 50-year-old trotting out to pitch seems absurd, talk to Jamie Moyer. In April the 49-year-old became the oldest pitcher in MLB history to win a game. Granted, he hadn’t been away from the game for five years.