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Enhanced attention

Sports | Report renews steroid speculation

Issue: "Can't run or hide," Oct. 14, 2006

What lies behind the magic marker may be baseball's next black eye. Ever since June when disgraced relief pitcher Jason Grimsley named names of players he says used steroids, sports writers have tried to figure out the six names that lie behind the blacked-out portions of the Grimsley affidavit released to the public.

It took a few months, but finally at least one reporter found a leak. According to the Los Angeles Times, a source at the IRS showed one of its reporters a copy of Grimsley's affidavit without the permanent marker redactions that had kept the potentially explosive steroids story on a low simmer for months. Who was on Grimsley's list of cheaters? According to the Times, Grimsley named Houston pitchers Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte as users of "performance enhancing drugs" and Baltimore star Miguel Tejada, along with teammates Jay Gibbons and Brian Roberts, as users of "anabolic steroids."

Since the original Times report, a source for the New York Daily News confirmed that Grimsley named Clemens as a user, though the federal prosecutor overseeing the BALCO investigation has said the Times report contains "significant inaccuracies." Grimsley was a teammate of Clemens and Pettitte in New York for the 1999 and 2000 seasons. Grimsley played in Baltimore last year. With the exception of former Oriole David Segui, who was the sixth player named and who outed himself shortly after Grimsley made his affidavit, all the players deny using performance enhancers.

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Does the revelation prove Clemens-heralded by some as baseball's best all-time pitcher-and others used performance enhancers? No. As Clemens, Pettitte and Tejada rushed to point out, none of them has ever failed a drug test. And at this point, the Times reporting makes it a he-said, he-said case between Grimsley and the accused stars.

But it's Clemens, whose on-field performance is to pitching what Barry Bonds is to hitting, who will certainly face the most scrutiny. The 44-year-old's workout routines have been a closely guarded secret for most of the last 10 years. And while the superstar right-hander hasn't tested positive in the recent MLB urine tests for anabolic steroids, baseball didn't have sophisticated drug tests when Grimsley and Clemens played together, nor does baseball even today test for human growth hormone-something Barry Bonds admitted using in grand jury testimony.

Around the Horn

GOLF: Tiger Woods' sixth consecutive PGA tour victory at the American Express Championship is quite an accomplishment. But he's only halfway to breaking the record of 11 consecutive PGA victories set by Byron Nelson in 1945. "What he did was absolutely remarkable," Woods said of Nelson, who died Sept. 26, "and I'm just thrilled that I've been able to win six in a row twice."

NFL: Days after suffering cuts that required 30 stitches, Dallas Cowboys center Andre Gurode still hadn't decided if he wanted to press charges against Tennessee defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth. During the Oct. 1 matchup between the Cowboys and Titans, Haynesworth appeared to knock off Gurode's helmet with his foot and then stomp the Dallas lineman's bare face with his spiked cleats. The NFL handed Haynesworth a record five-game suspension that will cost him about $190,000.

BOXING: If anyone comes out to see former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson's new boxing exhibition, he doesn't know why. Tyson says folks should probably save their money. "I think I'm useless to society," he said. "I don't think I'm worthy of the people who come out to see me, but they do." What Tyson doesn't know: There's always room for the carnival act.


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