The FBI took up the Roger Clemens case yesterday, told by the Justice Department to investigate whether the star pitcher lied when he testified to Congress he never took performance-enhancing drugs.
The FBI's involvement was announced one day after the leaders of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee told Attorney General Michael Mukasey they weren't sure whether Clemens told the truth under oath at a Feb. 5 deposition and Feb. 13 public hearing.
A probe could result in charges against the seven-time Cy Young Award winner for perjury, making false statements, or obstruction of justice. Congress did not ask for a similar investigation of Brian McNamee, the former personal trainer who testified under oath that he injected Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone.
"The request to open an investigation on the congressional testimony of Roger Clemens has been turned over to the FBI and will receive appropriate investigative action by the FBI's Washington field office," FBI spokeswoman Debra Weierman said.
Clemens testified that he never used steroids or HGH; McNamee testified he injected Clemens with performance-enhancers at least 16 times from 1998-2001.
"We've always expected they would open an investigation," said Clemens's lead lawyer, Rusty Hardin.
In Kissimmee, Fla., Astros owner Drayton McLane acknowledged he may reevaluate Clemens's 10-year personal services contract with the team - which kicks in when Clemens officially retires - in light of the pitcher's legal issues.
Elsewhere, Andy Pettitte, who told the committee Clemens admitted HGH use to him nearly a decade ago, acknowledged he's prepared to be interviewed again about his former teammate.
"It makes it extremely difficult," Pettitte said at the Yankees' training camp in Tampa. "I don't like any of this. I cannot stand it. I told you how I feel about him. I hate it. It's like a part of my family that's going to have to go through this."
Dismissal wantedBarry Bonds's
lawyers are scheduled to ask US District Court Judge Susan Illston
to dismiss a federal indictment charging him with perjury and obstruction of justice for his grand jury testimony, in which he denied knowingly using illegal performance-enhancing drugs. Bonds argues that prosecutors unfairly asked confusing, vague, and ambiguous questions during his grand jury appearance in December 2003. The former Giants star has pleaded not guilty. In court papers, he neither admits nor denies taking the drugs . . . Players' union leader Donald Fehr
said he would consider approving blood testing for HGH if there was a valid, efficient procedure for determining its use over an extended period.
Corpas closes dealManny Corpas
agreed to a four-year, $8,025,000 contract with the Rockies. After earning the closer job July 7, Corpas saved 19 of 20 games and went 4-2 with a 2.08 ERA, the lowest by a reliever in club history . . . Cubs second baseman Mark DeRosa
underwent what the club deemed a successful procedure in Chicago to correct an irregular heartbeat. DeRosa is expected back at spring training in Mesa by Sunday and is scheduled to resume baseball activities early next week . . . Johan Santana
will make his Grapefruit League debut for the Mets today against the Cardinals.
No blues for Torre
The Dodgers made Joe Torre's
debut as their manager a success, scoring three runs in the ninth to beat the Braves, 5-4, at Vero Beach, Fla. "For coming out of the box, I thought it was a good game for us," the former Yankees manager said. "It was fun. This was the first time in 13 years I've had a different uniform on." . . . At Scottsdale, Ariz., Kosuke Fukudome
walked, got hit by a pitch, and hit an RBI single in his Cubs debut as Chicago beat the Giants, 12-6 . . . Juan Gonzalez
got two hits and drove in a run as the Cardinals opened their exhibition season with a 7-0 win over the Mets at Jupiter, Fla. . . . Ryan Braun
crushed a tape-measure home run as the Brewers cruised to a 7-1 victory over the Athletics at Phoenix . . . Adam LaRoche's
home run helped the Pirates beat the Phillies, 11-6, at Clearwater, Fla. Pittsburgh lefthander Tom Gorzelanny
, a 14-game winner last season, was scratched from his scheduled start because of a sore shoulder . . . Marlins righthander Sergio Mitre
walked off the mound with a stiff elbow after failing to retire any of the three batters he faced in Florida's 16-3 win over Baltimore at Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
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