Baseball Is Called Out


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THE OVERVIEW
"Everyone involved in baseball over the past two decades -- Commissioners, club officials, the Players Association, and players -- shares to some extent in the responsibility for the steroids era. There was a collective failure to recognize the problem as it emerged and to deal with it early on. As a result, an environment developed in which illegal use became widespread."
-- Report's Conclusion
The Mitchell commission named 91 current and former players as users of steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs. It conducted interviews with more than 550 people who are current or former club officials, managers, coaches, physicians, trainers and security agents. Some of the evidence came from the interviews. But the commission also relied on previously published accounts in newspapers and books.
THE SURPRISE
The report extensively detailed Roger Clemens's use of steroids and human growth hormone. The source of the allegations was Brian McNamee, who met Clemens in 1997 when McNamee was a conditioning coach for the Toronto Blue Jays.

In the summer of 1998, Clemens asked McNamee to inject him with the steroid Winstrol. "McNamee injected Clemens approximately four times in the buttocks over a several-week period," the report said.

The relationship continued when Clemens was traded to the Yankees in 1999.
McNamee was hired as a trainer in 2000 and Clemens paid part of his salary. During the latter half of the 2000 season, McNamee injected Clemens four to six times with testosterone and also injected him four to six times with human growth hormone, the report said.
THE RECOMMENDATIONS
Former Sen. George J. Mitchell said MLB should:
• Create a department of investigations to look into allegations of drug use in the absence of a positive test.
• Develop a more comprehensive and effective program to educate players and others about the risks of the use of performance-enhancing drugs and how to train properly using legal supplements.
• Initiate an enhanced, year-round, unannounced testing program that is transparent to the public and administered by an independent company.
Mitchell urged Commissioner Bud Selig:
• To forgo disciplining players for past violations, including the players named in the report, except in cases where "the conduct is so serious that discipline is necessary to maintain the integrity of the game."
THE RESPONSE
"Discipline of players and others identified in this report will be determined on a case-by-case basis. If warranted, those decisions will be made swiftly. And I, of course, will give thorough consideration to Senator Mitchell's views on this subject."
-- MLB Commissioner Bud Selig

"Many players are named. Their reputations have been adversely affected, probably forever, even if it turns out down the road that they should not have been."
-- MLB Players Association chief Donald Fehr
PLAYERS AND OFFICIALS REACT
"We have just received the Mitchell Report and have not yet had an opportunity to fully review it. It is clear though that, like all Major League clubs, the report includes names of players that have had or currently have an association with the Nats. We will let all comments on this matter come from the Commissioner's office, and we will have no further comment at this time."
-- Statement from Washington Nationals
"Everyone involved in baseball over the past two decades -- Commissioners, club officials, the Players Association and players -- shares to some extent the responsibility for the steroids era. There was a collective failure to recognize the problem as it emerged and to deal with it early on."
-- Former Sen. George Mitchell
"It is very unfair to include Roger's name in this report. He is left with no meaningful way to combat what he strongly contends are totally false allegations. He has not been charged with anything, he will not be charged with anything and yet he is being tried in the court of public opinion with no recourse. That is totally wrong."
-- Rusty Hardin, Roger Clemens's attorney
"If there are problems, I wanted them revealed. His report is a call to action, and I will act."
-- Commissioner of Baseball Bud Selig
"Do I think I know former teammates that may have been [using steroids]? Sure I do. Can I tell you with no uncertainty who that was? No."
-- Boston RHP Curt Schilling on his blog
"We are going to ask Senator George Mitchell, Commissioner Bud Selig, and the President of the Major League Players Association, Don Fehr, to testify at a House Oversight and Government Reform hearing on Tuesday, December 18. We look forward to their testimony on whether the Mitchell report's recommendations will be adopted and whether additional measures are needed."
-- Joint statement from Reps. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) and Thomas M. Davis III (R-Va.) of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee
"There is no evidence of bias or special treatment to Red Sox in this report, or anybody else, because there isn't any. That had no effect."
-- Mitchell, who has been criticized for conducting the investigation while remaining a director of the Boston Red Sox
Q&A | MITCHELL REPORT
What Is the Mitchell Commission?
In March 2006, Commissioner of Baseball Bud Selig named former Senate majority leader George J. Mitchell to head the investigation into the use of performanceenhancing drugs in baseball. Three expert consultants also contributed -- Richard V. Clark, a research director for a pharmaceutical company and an expert in endocrinology and andrology; James J. Heckman, a Nobel Prize-winning economist; and Richard H. McLaren, a law professor from the University of Western Ontario who specializes in sports arbitration.
Why George Mitchell?
Mitchell has previous experience in heading sports commissions. He led a special inquiry into the bribery scandal surrounding the 2002 Salt Lake City Games on behalf of the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Mitchell's appointment drew some criticism based on possible conflicts of interest. He is a director of the Boston Red Sox and also is chairman of the Walt Disney Co., the parent company of ESPN, which is a broadcast partner of Major League Baseball.
What Did the Commission Do?
The commission reviewed more than 115,000 pages of documents from the commissioner's office and all 30 MLB clubs and more than 20,000 electronic records from the commissioner's office and some of the clubs; it also received requested documents from the baseball teams of a non-privileged nature. It also interviewed more than 700 witnesses in the United States, Canada and the Dominican Republic and conducted interviews with more than 550 people who are current or former club officials, managers, coaches, physicians, trainers, and security agents. The commission also interviewed Selig, MLB President Robert DuPuy, Kevin Hallinan (former senior vice president for security and facility management) and Rob Manfred (executive vice president for labor relations), as well as Donald Fehr, executive director of MLBPA. Mitchell asked to interview more than 50 players who were "at the time on the 40-man roster of a major league club. Almost without exception, those players declined to meet with me." The committee had no subpoena power.
The commission also interviewed more than 100 former club employees, former baseball commissioners Peter V. Ueberroth and Fay Vincent, and experts from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, the World Anti-Doping Agency and the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Agency, among others.
What if the Commission Got Something Wrong?
Players can sue if they feel they have been wrongly accused. Major League Baseball has indemnified the commission, meaning the members cannot be held personally liable.
AWARD WINNERS
Seven players who have received baseballís top honors were among those mentioned in the Mitchell Report:
Most Valuable Player
• Barry Bonds, San Francisco (2001-04, 1993), Pittsburgh (1990, 1992)
• Miguel Tejada, Oakland (2002)
• Jason Giambi, Oakland (2000)
• Sammy Sosa, Chicago Cubs (1998)
• Juan Gonzalez, Texas (1996, 1998)
• Ken Caminiti, San Diego (1996)
• Mo Vaughn, Boston (1995)
• Jose Canseco, Oakland (1988)
• Roger Clemens, Boston (1986)
Cy Young
• Roger Clemens, Houston (2004), N.Y. Yankees (2001), Toronto (1997-98), Boston (1986-87, 1991)
• Eric Gagne, L.A. Dodgers (2003)
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