Boone: 'Can't believe anything ... with some people'
"I don't know the person. He doesn't know me. I've never had a conversation with him. As far as I'm concerned, it's absolutely ridiculous," Boone said after reporting to Seattle's spring training camp.
In one chapter of Canseco's book, he described playing for the Anaheim Angels during a spring training game against the Mariners in 2001 and marveling at Boone's physique.
"I hit a double, and when I got out there to second base, I got a good look at Boone," Canseco wrote. "I couldn't believe my eyes. He was enormous.
"'Oh, my God,' I said to him. 'What have you been doing?'
"'Shhh,' he said. 'Don't tell anybody.'
"Whispers like that were a sign that you were part of the club -- the bond of a secret code or handshake," wrote Canseco, who admitted to steroid use and said he introduced other major-leaguers to the drug.
Canseco went on to claim that Boone "used his hulking new body to go crazy that season." Boone was an MVP candidate in 2001, posting career highs with a .331 average, 37 home runs and 141 RBI.
"Look at the guy saying it," Boone responded. "Look at what he's doing to make a dollar, speculating to make money."
In the week since transcripts of the book were released, several news outlets have documented that Canseco never reached second base in spring training games against the Mariners in 2001.
"You can't believe anything you read with some people," Boone said. "There's nothing I can do about that. It's unfortunate that someone who has never had a conversation with me would make an accusation, but I can't control what people say. Once again, it's ridiculous."
Boone said he welcomes baseball's new steroid testing policy.
Rules adopted in January mandate more frequent testing and 10-day suspensions for players who test positive. Previously, first-time offenders were sent for counseling and their names were kept private.
"The program we have is very good, very substantial," Boone said. "It's an even playing field. Everybody will be tested. I think it's a good thing for baseball. I think it's a good thing for everybody, knowing at any time anybody could be tested."
Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press