Notebook > Sports

Biggest losers


Issue: "Year in Review 2004," Jan. 1, 2005

1. Jason Giambi, Yankees first baseman

Once, Mr. Giambi was the American League MVP with a .342 average. But in 2004, the Yankees first baseman could only manage a .208 average in a half season. An intestinal sickness and a pituitary tumor sidelined his season and possibly his career. Later in the year, a San Francisco Chronicle report revealed Mr. Giambi admitted to a grand jury investigating BALCO that he had used steroids since at least 2001. Now the Yankees, unsure what kind of player Mr. Giambi is off the steroids, may seek to terminate his giant contract.

2. Marion Jones, Olympic sprinter

Like Mr. Giambi, the gold medal sprinter got caught up in sports' emerging steroid scandal. BALCO founder Victor Conte said he provided Ms. Jones with performance-enhancing drugs during the 2000 Summer Olympics where she earned three gold and two bronze medals. She could eventually lose the medals.

3. Kobe Bryant, Lakers guard

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First the young guard managed to dissolve the Lakers dynasty, then his formerly squeaky-clean reputation was tarnished by the run-up to a sexual assault trial in Colorado. The charges were eventually dropped, but Mr. Bryant's downward spiral didn't stop. In December, he made bizarre charges, saying former teammate Karl Malone had made passes at his wife.


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