Friday, August 19, 2005
Palmeiro shed little light on why he tested positive
Associated Press

BALTIMORE -- Rafael Palmeiro failed to explain how a steroid entered his system when he went before a baseball panel several months ago to plead his case, The Baltimore Sun reported Friday.

The Baltimore Orioles star shed little light during his long statement on why and how he tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug, three sources familiar with the transcript told the newspaper. The sources were interviewed on condition of anonymity because they wanted to wait until Congress finishes its review.

In August, Palmeiro said he never knowingly used steroids. Through agent Arn Tellem he has said the positive drug test will be regarded differently once certain information is disclosed.

"There is another side to this story, and Raffy will tell it soon," Tellem said. "I hope that the public will wait to make a final judgment about Rafael until they hear his story in its entirety."

Palmeiro is the most prominent major league player punished for taking banned drugs. The 40-year-old slugger tested positive in the spring. He challenged that finding at an undisclosed time before Major League Baseball's arbitration panel.

In March, Palmeiro testified before the House Government Reform Committee that he had never used steroids.

The arbitration panel has denied Palmeiro's appeal, saying the player failed to establish the positive test result was not his fault. The panel added it found that Palmeiro's testimony "in many respects was quite compelling" and there was no evidence he was "untruthful."

Baseball suspended Palmeiro for 10 days and the House committee is now examining arbitration hearing transcripts to determine whether Palmeiro lied to Congress.

Palmeiro tested positive for the powerful steroid stanozolol, a person with knowledge of the sport's drug-testing program has told The Associated Press. The person did not want to be identified because the sport prohibits disclosure of test results without authorization.

Experts say it is unlikely such a steroid could have entered his system accidentally.