What Else Did Miguel Tejada Lie About?

Posted by Dave Nichols | Wednesday, February 11, 2009 | , , | 3 comments »

As I type these words, Houston Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada is appearing before a federal judge just blocks from my office to plead guilty of lying to Congress about his knowledge of and involvment with Performance Enhancing Drugs (PEDs) in Major League baseball.

According to court documents, Tejada has entered a plea agreement with prosecutors allowing his to testify today. He is charged with lying to investigators for the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in 2005 about conversations he had with and about former Oakland A's teammate Adam Piatt and Piatt's PED use.

It's important to note that at this point, Tejada isn't being charged about lying about his own PED use, though terms of his plea agreement may include further information.

Tejada faces as much as a year in jail if convicted on the misdemeanor charge of making misrepresentations to Congress. Under federal guidelines, he would probably receive a lighter sentence.

Tejada has also lied about his age, as ESPN confronted him about discrepancies in his birth certificate.

Tejada was called upon by the investigators after former teammate Rafael Palmeiro indicated that a tainted B-12 injection may have caused him to test positive for steroids. Palmeiro earlier that year testified before Congress that he had never used steroids.

During Palmeiro's appeal process, Congress also investigated the former first baseman on perjury charges, but after their investigation, no charges were filed against Palmeiro.

So let's go through the list: Barry Bonds is accused of lying to a federal grand jury--he was charged with perjury. Roger Clemens is accused of lying to Congress, he could very likely be charged with perjury. Miguel Tejada lied to Congress and is pleading guilty to the charges.

But Rafael Palmeiro was accused of lying to Congress, was investigated, and Congress found no evidence to charge him of perjury.
"We couldn't find any evidence of steroid use prior to his testimony," Chairman Tom Davis, R-Va., said when he released a 44-page report. "That's not a finding of innocence, but it's a finding that we could not substantiate perjury."

"We have a responsibility, an obligation, to investigate it, and that's what we've done."

During the investigation, two other Orioles, identified in the report as Player A and Player B, were also given B-12 by Tejada. "The committee did find substantial inconsistencies between Mr. Tejada's account and the accounts of Players A and B," Davis said. "While these inconsistencies were curious to us, we did not pursue them."
With the evidence mounting that if you lie to Congress or a grand jury about steroids usage you will be charged and prosecuted for perjury, Congress failed to charge Rafael Palmeiro. Congress had his drug tests. They had inconsistancies in Tejada's testimony. They interviewed a dozen other people involved. Why, then, didn't they prosecute Palmeiro, like they are with Bonds, Tejada and Clemens? They believed him.

Why doesn't anyone else? Why is it so hard to believe that in April of 2005, Tejada gave Palmeiro a syringe of what Tejada claimed was vitamin B-12, and it turns out there were mere traces of stanozolol in the mix?

On May 19, 2005 MLB informed Palmeiro that he failed a PED test he took on May 4. On May 27, Palmeiro took a second test and was clean. In the span of three weeks, there was so little banned substance in his system that he tested clean.

So why is it so hard to believe Palmeiro? Congress did.

Photo by Getty Images

3 comments

  1. Your Boss // February 11, 2009 at 1:29 PM  

    As I type these words, Houston Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada is appearing before a federal judge just blocks from my office

    Get back to work, or you may soon find yourself appearing in a line extending blocks from the unemployment office. Capiche?

  2. An Briosca Mor // February 11, 2009 at 1:37 PM  
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  3. Cheryl Nichols // February 11, 2009 at 2:56 PM  

    I have always believed Palmeiro (as most of you know). :) I attended the Tejada's hearing today too. Wouldn't have missed it. The whole thing just kills me. At the end of the hearing when he pleaded guilty and had right hand in the air, I almost teared up. I hate that all of this is tainting the sport that I love so much, but also happy that this may lead to clearing a man (Raffy) that I think is innocent. We'll see what happens next...