As the Clemens-McNamee affair grows more bizarre by the day, I think that Brian McNamee’s submission of new physical evidence has some serious implications that impact McNamee more than Clemens. According to McNamee’s attorney, his client decided to reveal the new evidence to federal prosecutors in early January.
McNamee’s lawyers say their client lost any lingering loyalty to Clemens after a news conference in Houston on Jan. 7 in which Clemens played a tape his lawyer had secretly recorded of a telephone call between Clemens and McNamee.
The next day, Jan. 8, McNamee brought the evidence to his lawyers, they said. Two days later, they handed it to federal authorities in New York, who are now having the items tested.
“They obviously were not happy about it,” Ward said of the authorities’ reaction to the delay. “But they understood certain omissions that he made, and they’re happy they have it in their possession.”
McNamee’s lawyers said the physical evidence dates from 2001 and 2002. The photograph that includes the beer can, they said, reflects injections McNamee gave Clemens, although they said there could also be used needles from other persons stored in the can.
In what amounts to a new disclosure, they said the photograph of the unused needles and steroids specifically dated to 2002, when McNamee said he was no longer giving Clemens injections. But they said Clemens nevertheless gave McNamee the unused drug items in October of that year because he did not want to take them on a flight to Houston, implying that Clemens might still have been using steroids or H.G.H. in 2002 even without McNamee’s involvement.
This clearly violates the terms of his plea agreement with federal prosecutors to be truthful, because he stated that he had no knowledge of steroid use by Clemens after 2001. But, that is not the only reason why I think this new evidence is interesting.
McNamee was linked to Kirk Rodomski by checks written to Radomski in 2003 and 2004. McNamee claimed that these purchases were for non-baseball clients. This claim becomes a little less believable now, and I will not be surprised if prosecutors do go after McNamee for distributing steroids. His lies severely undermine his credibility as a government witness.
In the end, the physical evidence may do more damage to McNamee than Clemens. Forensic experts have largely dismissed the relevance of the syringes due to dating, chain of custody, and tampering issues. The evidence serves only to bring more questions about McNamee’s motives and believability.
And something tells me that this isn’t the last twist in the case.
Update: And here is that twist.
Brian McNamee told congressional investigators Thursday that he injected Roger Clemens’ wife with human growth hormone before she appeared with the pitcher in Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue in 2003, according to a Washington source.
That didn’t take long.