“Here’s something you probably don’t know about Roger Clemens: He’s one of very few baseball players I know who never cheated on his wife. I was amazed by him, to be honest. His wife should be very proud of him.”
So…does this mean that Jose Conseco never actually had any idea what he was talking about?
Having an affair with a fifteen-year old when you are twenty eight (and married with two children, if you want to do the whole bourgeoisie morality thing) is the sort of shit that people generally go the hell to jail for. So for a bit there I was a little disappointed in the ol’ Rocket.
But it just might be mathematically impossible to be white trash-ier than Mindy Mccready. Her resume includes being a country singer (with titles as diverse as “Ten Thousand Angels” and “Guys do it all the time”), being an oxycontin addict (hillbilly heroin, Rush Limbaugh’s drug of choice), a weird incident in 2005 that might have been an attempt on he part to unmask a con-artist and might have been her stealing some dude’s truck (there is weirdly little information about this on the internet), and beating up her mother. So I kinda give Clemens props, in a satisfying episode of the Springer Show sort of way.
If you want to take a moment and actually (shudder) analyze Jose Conseco, you are compelled to realize that he has some very weird issues with Roger Clemens. In Juiced, after making his claim about Clemens’s fidelity, he goes on to broadly imply that Clemens had used steroids. Since the release of the Mitchell report Conseco he has submitted an affidavit saying that he had no knowledge of Clemens’ steroid use, and has also implied that, had it not been for pressure from his publisher—which he links to Clemens’ connection to the Bush family—he would have written more about Clemens’ steroid use in Juiced. Essentially, now, his position is that he never had any proof that Clemens did steroids, but had always strongly suspected that he might do steroids, and he emphasizes either the lack of proof or the longtime suspicion, depending on the situation.
My theory is that Jose Conseco’s two goals in all of this are to be liked by Roger Clemens and to enhance his (Conseco’s) personal celebrity as much as possible. Probably, part of why Conseco wanted to be liked by Clemens was that he knew damn well that Clemens did steroids. Thus, when he initially wrote Juiced he did, in fact, have more about Clemens doing steroids, since it was the most sensational thing at his disposal, but he also threw in the thing about Clemens never cheating on his wife, as an olive branch or consolation prize. Also, Conseco might have known that Clemens’ fidelity would eventually come under scrutiny, and wanted the Rocket to know that he was on his side, at least when it came to screwing underage country singers. Conseco’s publishers made him tone down the stuff about Clemens, because they weren’t dummies and knew that Clemens was the sort of guy who would be a litigious dick about being explicitly called out for steroids. After the Mitchell report, one of the many minor pieces of Conseco stock that went up was the fact that he was prevented from printing unsubstantiated claims about Clemens’ juicing in the first place, and Conseco had to make this known. However, because he still wants to be liked by Clemens, the Clemens camp was able to work something out where he would publicly claim that he had no explicit knowledge of Clemens’ steroid use.
I like to think that, although most of the negotiating was done by their agents, Jose Conseco insisted on a face to face meeting to confirm the details of the arrangement. Conseco went alternately hoping that Clemens would embrace him as a fellow disgraced juicer and eagerly anticipating Clemens’ squirming with the knowledge that he was in some way under Conseco’s power. The meeting was brief and Clemens never made eye-contact with Conseco. Maybe at the end, Conseco said something like “hey, how’s that little blond country singer doing, she was a real nice piece of ass,” and Clemens grunted and shrugged, his eyes clearly saying “jesus christ what will it take to get this fucking spic out of my sight,”…and Conseco, who had been greedily studying the broad, bloated face for any sign of fellow feeling or sympathy, could read that as clear as a billboard, and, after a weak attempt at getting the check, shuffled out into the world to maintain Clemens’ innocence.