Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Statement by Rafael Palmeiro

To: National Desk, Sports Reporter

Contact: Beau Phillips, 202-368-9033; Sharon Castillo, 202-777-3526

WASHINGTON, Nov. 9 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Following is a statement of Rafael Palmeiro:

Since I was informed last May that I tested positive for steroids, I have fully cooperated with Major League Baseball and Congress in their respective inquiries into this matter. I have done so because I have nothing to hide. I am grateful to Chairman Tom Davis, Congressman Henry Waxman and their respective staffs for the fairness and professionalism with which they have conducted their investigation.

Now that the House Government Reform Committee is finishing its work, I will address the facts as I have always said I wanted to do. Everything I have been working for all my life - to play the game that I love with dignity and earn the respect and admiration of my colleagues and fans - has been changed by my suspension. For this, I alone take full responsibility.

I have never intentionally taken steroids. But I must also acknowledge that Stanozolol, a banned substance, was found in my system in May. Although I do not know how this substance came into my body, it is possible that a shot of vitamin B12 I took sometime in April might have been the cause. Under questioning by the Major League Player's Association - the player's union ­I had to reveal the details of how I got the possibly tainted B12 and then had to testify about the facts of this case under oath. I have never implicated any player in the intentional use or distribution of steroids, or any other illegal substance, in any interview or testimony.

I am not trying to hold others responsible. I was careless in not seeking a doctor's advice and made a foolish mistake. Nobody is more frustrated and disappointed in me than I am. Throughout my adult life, I have worked very hard on and off the field to live my life in an honorable way.

All my accomplishments are now tainted, and many people have been hurt. I deeply regret the pain I have caused my family, my teammates, my fans and the game of baseball. I am sorry for the distraction that I have caused to the Orioles clubhouse and the League.

I remain opposed to the use of steroids by athletes. I hope others find a lesson to be learned in my experience and I will do my part to teach it.


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