Clemens on “60 Minutes”

One of the oldest reporters on television interviewed one of the oldest players in the majors, and for all we know, both of them could be on steroids.

Clemens continued his denial of steroid and HGH use on "60 Minutes"Sunday night, telling Mike Wallace repeatedly that it "didn't happen"as anger and frustration creased his face. There wasn't much revealed in the interview, which was to be expected. What could Clemens say? How does one prove whether he has or has not done steroids? It's a nearly impossible task.

My wife sat next to me watching the interview, her psychology education spinning through the inadvertent physical tells one shows when not telling the truth. She came away believing Clemens was telling the truth based on his eye movements going up and to the right, a sign of someone being truthful. Dishonesty tends to cause random eye movements, often side to side and one looks for the words and reasoning to explain what they're thinking.

Consider than an exclusive. He's innocent.

I have no idea whether Clemens did steroids or not and the Mike Wallace interview didn't do much to clear up my uncertainty. He certainly appeared angry and upset, but I imagine he would feel those same emotions whether he were caught or wrongly accused. What doesn't make sense to me is why McNamee would lie about Clemens unless he was pressured by Federal prosecutors and the Mitchell committee to land a big fish.

When you look at the names listed in the Mitchell report, Clemens is the only name with serious impact. Pettitte is a decent name, but not on the scale of Clemens. The lack of any concrete new information on Bonds, McGwire, or Sosa left the report wanting for information on the players people have been suspecting for years. Without Clemens' name, the report would have certainly had less impact.

Is that reason enough to pressure someone like McNamee to create false testimony? Probably not. There doesn't seem to be any credible motivation for McNamee to lie about a client and supposed friend. Clemens possible motivation to use steroids seems self explanatory.

Clemens did raise an interesting point, Why would he stop taking steroids or HGH after 2003? Wouldn't he have continued? He certainly had some success in the weak NL Central, posting numbers that far exceeded his supposed steroid years with the Yankees. As he got older, wouldn't he find himself needing them more?

That argument certainly doesn't prove innocence, but if McNamee himself claims no knowledge of Clemens doing steroids over the last four years, and Clemens body type hasn't declined, one would have a hard time arguing that Clemens bulk is the result of steroid enhanced workouts. His physical appearance has always drawn scrutiny and suspicion.

The penultimate moment will be when Clemens sits in front of Congress. He claimed to Mike Wallace that his story is his story and that will not change. He will be under oath on Capitol Hill, where ball players and commissioners swear on the Bible but oil tycoons do not. If Clemens takes the Fifth, our minds will have been made up for us.

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