Entertainment & Sports Law

Yankees' Giambi to Testify About Steroids

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A designated hitter for the New York Yankees will be the first baseball player to testify before a major league baseball steroids use investigator.

Under an agreement announced today that could save him from suspension by major league baseball, Jason Giambi is expected to discuss with George Mitchell his own use of the banned substance, which is believed to enhance performance, reports Sports Illustrated. While he is not expected to discuss other players specifically, he will talk about the “landscape” of steroid use among other players, the magazine writes, and “MLB still is hoping to learn some things regarding Barry Bonds since Giambi knew Bonds’ trainer Greg Anderson and Giambi will not be precluded from testifying about him.”

Bonds, a famous San Francisco Giants slugger, has already topped the 714 home runs that Babe Ruth hit in his 33-year career, and is now closing in on Hammerin’ Hank’s all-time career record of 755 home runs. Nonetheless, because of the rumors of steroid use that have stained his career, he is viewed by some as not in the same league as either Ruth or Aaron, reports USA Today.

Although it isn’t clear what the legal consequences of proven steroid use by a player might be, other than suspension from major league baseball, testimony before Congress and a federal grand jury in San Francisco about steroid use by professional players has previously prompted the league to impose tougher anti-steroid standards, writes the San Francisco Chronicle. Detailed claims about Bonds’ alleged steroid use have also been reported in a recent book, the article notes.

It is clear, however, that the ongoing steroids controversy has been keeping a number of lawyers busy.

The San Francisco grand jury investigation, in which Bonds testified, concerned a federal case over alleged distribution of steroids to elite athletes by BALCO, short for Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, the Chronicle reports. The investigation is still ongoing, although a former lead prosecutor recently told the Chronicle he expects it to be completed soon.

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