Unsealed Radomski affidavit reveals names of Sid Fernandez, others
As the Jason Grimsley affidavit was being unsealed in Arizona on Thursday, showing that the former journeyman pitcher did not name Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte as drug users, the equally notorious Kirk Radomski affidavit was being unsealed in New York, revealing several lesser names not included in the Mitchell report last week.
According to the Radomski affidavit, obtained exclusively by ESPN, the former Mets clubhouse attendant received a $3,500 check from former New York Mets All-Star Sid Fernandez, written in February 2005, six years after Fernandez last tried to pitch professionally.
The file, unsealed in the U.S. District Court in Central Islip, N.Y., late Thursday, does not specify what Fernandez's check bought. Fernandez did not return a call to his Hawaii home Thursday night.
The unsealing of the Grimsley affidavit was also first reported by ESPN.
The Radomski affidavit was filed under seal in Dec. 2005, when IRS investigator Jeff Novitzky, the lead agent on the BALCO distribution case, sought a search warrant for Radomski's home in Manorville, N.Y. Radomski's name and the existence of the affidavit didn't come to light until April 2007, when Radomski pleaded guilty to distributing steroids. At the time, a version of the search warrant affidavit was released, but with numerous sections of the document redacted. Radomski is set to be sentenced Feb. 8.
Federal prosecutors asked the judges to unseal the files, saying they no longer needed to protect the information as part of their ongoing investigation into performance-enhancing drug distribution.
The most tantalizing section of the redacted Radomski affidavit included 23 blacked-out lines of information obscuring the names of his clients. As part of Radomski's plea agreement, he cooperated with former Sen. George Mitchell's investigation into baseball's doping history. Most of the names found in the unsealed affidavit appeared in Mitchell's report.
The names not used by Mitchell were not exceptional. Besides Fernandez, whose last major league appearance was a single start for the Houston Astros in April 1997, the only names that appear in the affidavit but not the Mitchell report are Ryan Schurman, who never rose above Double-A and since 2002 has only pitched in independent leagues, and Rick Holyfield, another journeyman minor leaguer.
Many of the 23 entries were repeats: Only 13 different names are listed, including Grimsley, Adam Piatt, Adam Riggs, Jerry Hairston Jr., David Segui, Jim Parque (there is one reference to an "Adam Parque"), Denny Neagle, Larry Bigbie and Rondell White.
Brian McNamee, the personal trainer who named names to Mitchell, is listed as having written four checks for a total of $7,500, and is identified as "former NY Yankee employee, personal fitness trainer for Roger Clemens & Andy Pettitte."
Also, in a section detailing Radomski's phone records, the affidavit says Radomski called Pete Rose Jr. numerous times in 2001, "which occurred during the time frame when Rose Jr. pleaded guilty to distributing performance-enhancing drugs."
Rose Jr. pleaded guilty in 2005 to distributing GBL, a drug that converts to the drug GHB in the body, in 2001. GHB, known as "the date-rape drug," is sometimes used by dopers to help them sleep.
The Hearst Corp., acting on behalf of its newspapers the San Francisco Chronicle and the Albany Times-Union, had sued to have the Radomski file unsealed, arguing that Radomski had already pleaded guilty, and that by forcing Radomski to share information with Mitchell, the government had no reason to keep the information under wraps.
Officials with the U.S. Attorney's office did not return calls for comment. Eve Burton, Hearst's chief counsel, did not say whether she plans to continue with the lawsuit, but criticized the fact that ESPN was the only outlet that obtained the document.
"Once again, the government is selectively providing information to only certain members of the public, as it did with Mr. Mitchell, rather than making it widely available to all Americans who care about baseball," Burton said. "This is a disservice to everyone involved."
ESPN obtained the document after it was unsealed in federal court.T. J. Quinn and Pedro Gomez are reporters for ESPN. Quinn can be reached at email@example.com.
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