Jose Canseco's "MAX" Is Named, Alex Rodriguez off the Hook

Patrick ReadSenior Writer IApril 18, 2008

By Patrick Read

Washington DC-  On Friday, April 18th, 2008 Joseph Dion, A-Rod's ex-trainer from Seattle for more than 3 years, called into Sports Illustrated to make a confession.  Joseph Dion is "Max" from Jose Canseco's book, Vindicated.  And he told that he is Anti-Performance Enhancers, as is NY Yankee phenom, Alex Rodriguez.

  Jose Canseco said he was surprised Alex wasn't in the Mitchell Report, as he had introduced Alex to "Max" (Joseph Dion), a "known steroid distributor."  What was not investigated was whether Dion had ever distributed steroids at all.  Dion said, "I am anti-steroid, as Alex is.  Alex is one of the hardest working, all natural athletes that I know."

  Of Dion, Rodriguez says, "Yes, I know him. "He's a Christian man, a good man -- a great man, actually. I talk to him in passing about 4 or 5 times a winter.  He helped train me in Seattle by running me everyday... for up to 8 miles per day."  Needless to say, when Alex went to steal his first base that season his legs weren't there.  "After that I stopped jogging," said Rodriguez.

  This does not take away from Canseco's credibility, as Max actually did exist.  Canseco never said proof positive that A-Rod took steroids, just that he introduced him to "a known steroid dealer."  Emerson, Canseco's lawyer, suspects foul play as "Max" was named 4 days before Canseco is to meet with the Federal Prosecutors (and IRS) on Tuesday, April 22.   He has been reported to be eager to meet Novitzky and help anyway he can.

  Canseco originally said in his first book, Juiced, that when someone said he was taking B-12, that it was code for using steroids.  Clemens had told him about taking B-12 shots,and Canseco thought directly to the "code."  Since the Mitchell Report was released Canseco now believes Clemens.  Especially after learning that Clemens was really taking B-12 shots.  Regarding Canseco's belief in Clemens, "He would have gotten them (PEDs) from me. Like everyone else did."  Canseco recollected about he and Clemens joking around about steroid use "We played golf, and I hit a drive 400 yards. He looked at me, and said "whatever you're taking must be working," and we laughed.

  The more Canseco thought back to Clemens, he never once remembered Clemens asking how to take steroids, how much to take, or how often. 

   Canseco dropped a bombshell on Brian McNamee's allegations and sworn testimony, calling him a dirty liar.  In Canseco's affadavit he goes on to call out 4 of McNamee's lies: 1.)That Clemens was at the Canseco Party (Canseco proclaims Roger was not at the party that McNamee refers to in the Mitchell Report) 2.)Canseco says he never gave any PEDs to Clemens 3.)Canseco testified that McNamee never returned any PEDs (Androl-5- pills, Nor Winstrol)  to him 4.)Canseco finally calls out McNamee for lying about Clemens telling Jose he won 2 Cy Youngs while taking HGH.  Lastly, after each legal admission Canseco swears that Mitchell's Office never went so far as to contact him to verify any of these allegations. Mitchell, in the Mitchell Report, statded that his investigators DID talk to Canseco.

  Canseco testified :

 "I have had numerous conversations with other baseball players and people in general about steroids. In fact, there was a period in my life when I would talk openly about steroids to others. I have no doubt that during this time I spoke to Clemens about steroids just like I did with other people. However, I have never had a conversation with Clemens in which he expressed any interest in using steroids or human growth hormone. Clemens has never asked me to give him steroids or human growth hormone, and I have never seen Clemens use, possess, or ask for steroids or human growth hormone. I have played on three teams with Roger Clemens and I have no reason to believe that he has ever used steroids, human growth hormone, or any other performance enhancing drugs."  

 I think Canseco would know, and if Clemens did use Canseco, just like ESPN and the NY Daily News, he would be out to make a considerable amount of "selling out" his ex-team mate. That is what some media outlets say about Canseco, "he is just doing it for the money." But is what he is saying true?  Especailly about McNamee lying?

   Other than Clemens being of interest to Jeff Novtizky, of the IRS, is Magglio Ordonez.  Regarding his allegations about Ordonez, Canseco took and passed a polygraph more than one time.  It is detailed in his book, "Vendicated: Big Names, Big Liars, and the Battle to Save Baseball."   And Magglio has not denied the accusation, rather he has ignored it.  Canseco may take a pounding over his A-Rod allegations, but what is left are Ordonez, and Clemens. Will ESPN believe Canseco less than McNamee? The two are fellow accusers.

  McNamee has not taken, and passed any type lie detector at all. Yet regular media types, and House Democrats alike take McNamee's word as golden.  Though the gold they refer to is in the form of advertising money (or votes) they made off of Clemens Defamation in some of the higest off season ratings ever. Commercials were sure to make a buck for the likes of ESPN,  whose Skip Bayliss lushed over McNamee, his courage, and accusations.

  The gleaming difference between the two accusers? Canseco was found so credible by Congress that they called an inquiry in 2005.  On the other hand Congress (Burton)told McNamee he offers "lie after lie, after lie, after lie" and that "there is one thing I do not believe, and that's you."

  Regardless, Alex Rodriguez is seemingly off the hook.  And Canseco meets with Novitzky Tuesday.  Will Canseco talk about the meeting?  Given McNamee not talking to Clemens' people until 6 days prior to the Mitchell Report was released,  and six months after his initial investigation, saying ( in his privately taped interview by Hardin) that he was ordered "not to tell anyone, anything by Novitzky" we may have to wait to get the word on Canseco.