Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Live Blogging the Live Blogging of the Clemens Hearings

Ben: This Just in! Roger Clemens not just a ballplayer, also a human being.


Bryan: I'm skeptical, reading Jayson Stark's play-by-play:

Rep. Elijah Cummings started his questioning by making sure Clemens knew he was under oath -- "and you know what that means? Is that correct?"

"AFFIRMATIVE," the Rocket replied.

Rep. Cummings then praised Pettitte as being "one of the most respected players in the major leagues and one of the most honest people in baseball."

"AFFIRMATIVE," Clemens responded.

But when Cummings then confronted Clemens with Pettitte's testimony that the Rocket had told him he'd used HGH, and asked Clemens if this was true, Clemens gave him a stern, "NEGATIVE."

"So you did not tell Mr. Pettitte you used Human Growth Hormone?"



Some more good stuff:

"Mr. Pettitte said he had 'no doubt' about his recollection. ... Why would he tell Congress that one of his closest friends was taking an illegal performance-enhancing drug if there was any doubt in his mind?"

• "If that conversation never happened, why would Laura Pettitte remember that conversation?"

• "What possible reason would Mr. Pettitte have to fabricate a statement about you, his friend?"

Clemens isn't looking at his sharpest and is getting HAMMERED (according to Stark). Reminds me of this. The real one, obviously:


We've switched over to CNNSI, just to switch it up. We've got an "AM I ON TV?" moment already, courtesy of Indiana Rep. Dan Burton:

"Burton concludes by saying he doesn't see evidence of Clemens lying and grills McNamee. "This is really disgusting. You are here as a sworn witness, and yet we have lie after lie after lie! I don't know what to believe! I know one thing I don't believe -- and that's you!"

Oh snap!

Burton is better known (or no longer known) as the guy who called President Clinton a "scumbag," then admitted he had a child out of wedlock. From Salon circa '98:

Earlier this year, Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., the powerful head of the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee and a major critic of both President Clinton's personal behavior and his campaign fund-raising techniques, startled the country by suddenly admitting that he had fathered a child out of wedlock.

At the time Burton said his announcement was due to an upcoming article about his personal life in Vanity Fair magazine. He also issued a challenge to reporters at that time: "As far as peccadilloes and all that stuff, man, they could go from dawn till dusk digging around trying to find out stuff about that ... There's nothing else to learn."

As it turned out, with perfect postmodern irony, Vanity Fair chose not to publish the exposé of Burton's behavior that prompted him to "out" himself. But as investigative reporter Russ Baker, the author of that unpublished article, discovered when he continued his inquiry, there was in fact a great deal more to learn about the congressman's behavior.

You can read the rest of the article


Deadspin has this bit of gold:

Nothing will ever beat this:
Congressman: "Mr. Clemens, do you recall bleeding through your pants in 2001?"
Clemens: "I do not."
Well, that's a relief.


Back to Stark for a second:

"Since he's under oath, any chance one of these Congressmen could ask Roger what the heck actually happened when he threw that bat at Mike Piazza? He didn't really think that was the ball, did he?"



According to the NYT's Bats blog, our Congressmen are not up-to-date with the rules of the Hall of Fame:

In clearly the most befuddling question of the morning so far, Representative William Macy Clay, Democrat of Missouri, asked Mr. Clemens “what uniform you will wear into the Hall of Fame.”

Clemens hesitated and said with the merest of smiles he could muster. He said, “Can I state that I didn’t hear that question?”

“That is fine,” Clay said.

Clay is apparently unfamiliar with a rule, passed before 2003, that no longer allows players to choose what team they go into the Hall with. This was widely seen as a response to Wade Boggs' signing with the (DEVIL) Rays under the promise he would wear that cap into the Hall, a promise that was never made, say those involved. The Hall changed the rule, and Boggs' plaque features a Red Sox cap.


Should Congress be talking about baseball?

That's what Steve Goldman asks over at Baseball Prospectus. His answer is that yes, Congress has every right to talk about baseball, even with a war and economic crisis at hand, and digs into the Constitution for his evidence. He also says that the Clemens hearing is superfluous and unnecessary after the Mitchell Report hearings, a bit of theater that is decidedly wasteful. It's a good read after the headline groan.


Best thing I've read all day:

But I'm not crazy. The Suns didn't have a chance of winning a title two weeks ago. Now? They're an intriguing choice. And they definitely have a higher ceiling. They have upside. Isn't the definition of a good deal one that betters the state you're in? If the basketball gods exist, Shaq will find the fountain of youth in the desert instead of a fountain of gravy. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I really am.

Yeah, it's not about Clemens. It's Simmons' column about the Shaq trade.


This has started to move too fast for me. The Times is talking about Democracts going after Clemens, and Republicans going after McNamee; ESPN is talking about illegal B-12 shots, and CNNSI is comparing Clemens' size from one era to the next. Which begs the question: aren't they all supposed to be watching the SAME thing?




"I've listened to you very carefully," Cummings said. "And I take you at your word. And you're telling me that Andy Pettitte is an honest man, and his credibility is pretty much impeccable. … You said you were misunderstood. But all I'm saying is, it's hard to believe. It's hard to believe your story.

"I hate to say that," Cummings concluded. "You're one of my heores. But it's hard to believe you."

And with that, the hearing is done. My fingers hurt. I have new respect for Will Leitch.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This whole thing is a web of lies, misdirection, and confusion. Will we ever know the truth?

The NannyGate photo is funny!