Iowa congressman Bruce Braley, a Democrat from Waterloo, was on a House committee that questioned major league pitcher Roger Clemens and his former trainer Wednesday about alleged steroid use. Braley asked Clemens how he could allow trainer Brian McNamee to inject him with B-12 vitamin shots without knowing if the trainer was licensed to do so.
Braley told Clemens he had a problem with someone who is a highly paid professional athlete trusting his body to someone with no medical training to take care of him. Clemens says he trusted McNamee not to harm his body. Clemens admits taking B-12 shots from McNamee but denies taking Human Growth Hormones.
Braley told former trainer McNamee that his admission of injecting Major League Baseball players with steroids influences teens and their participation in sports. Braley says he got a text message from his 16-year-old son who was watching the hearing on TV and says McNamee’s admission that he administered steroids to highly visible athletes and encouraged them to take illegal substances to enhance their performance, is “shameful.”
Braley later told reporters he wasn’t buying Clemens excuse. Braley says he told Clemens that B-12 injections are indicated for limited and specific purposes, none of which applied to him. Braley says Clemens tried to claim that his mother recommended the B-12 shots from the trainer, but Braley says the medical evidence shows oral B-!2 is enough to remedy a problem of B-12 deficiency.
Braley says this case is all part of a bigger problem. “Major League Baseball has covered its eyes while these practices have been going on, it’s a very privileged environment, and its time that the mask be taken off, and that we know that the problem is there and it’s not going away until Major League Baseball steps up and does something about it, Braley says. The case could end up being referred to the Justice Department for criminal charges.