Giambi Brothers, Randy Velarde Testify Bonds's Trainer Gave Them Steroids
Colorado Rockies baseball player Jason Giambi and his brother Jeremy told jurors at Barry Bonds’s perjury trial that they got performance-enhancing drugs from the former San Francisco Giants outfielder’s trainer.
Jason Giambi, called as a prosecution witness yesterday, said he began working with Bonds’s trainer, Greg Anderson, after meeting him in November 2002 at an all-star game in Japan. After a drug test that Anderson arranged showed Giambi tested positive for the steroid Deca, Anderson sent a kit of testosterone, syringes and a calendar, said Giambi, then a player for the New York Yankees. A second shipment arrived a month later, he said.
“In the second shipment was some white pills, some yellow pills and the Clear and the Cream,” said Giambi, referring to so-called designer steroids that an expert last week told the jury were undetectable and helped athletes who had taken steroids beat drug tests.
Marvin Benard, a former Giants player, testified yesterday and former New York Yankee Randy Velarde told jurors today that they, too, received performance-enhancing drugs from Anderson. While prosecutors had said in court documents that they may call other athletes, including former Giants players Benito Santiago and Armando Rios, today they told U.S. District Judge Susan Illston that their next witnesses were Bonds’s personal shopper, his doctor and a sports anti-doping expert.
Velarde, an infielder who played for the Yankees from 1987 to 1995 and again in 2001 as part of a 16-year career with four teams, said he met Anderson in 2002 through a teammate who said “he could get me some stuff through Greg.”
“What did you understand ‘stuff’ to mean?” Assistant U.S. Attorney Matt Parrella asked.
“Human growth hormone,” Velarde said. “Steroids.”
Bonds, 46, who holds Major League Baseball’s home run record, is on trial in federal court in San Francisco for allegedly lying when he told a federal grand jury in 2003 that he never knowingly took steroids provided by Anderson. His lawyers say Bonds truthfully testified that he received performance-enhancing substances from the trainer, while not knowing what they were because they were so new.
Cris Arguedas, Bonds’s attorney, questioned both Giambi brothers about their understanding of what Anderson gave them.
“Did he say to you that the Clear and the Cream had steroid-like effects without being steroids?” Arguedas asked Jason Giambi, reading from testimony he gave to a grand jury.
“I said, yeah, yeah, it’s undetectable,” said Giambi, the first player to testify against Bonds since the trial started March 21.
Bonds patted Giambi’s arm as he passed him in the courtroom after returning from a break in the trial.
Jeremy Giambi, who said he received testosterone, the Cream and the Clear, said under cross-examination by Arguedas that Anderson never told him the Cream was a steroid or testosterone- based. Anderson said it was “an alternative to steroids,” Giambi said.
“Based on your conversations with Greg Anderson, was there any doubt in your mind what the injectable testosterone was?” Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeff Nedrow asked Jeremy Giambi.
“No, I understood what it was,” Giambi answered. “A steroid.”
Anderson, who pleaded guilty in 2005 to distributing steroids, has refused to testify about his dealings with Bonds. Illston told the jury that the testimony of the Giambi brothers and other athletes was offered to show the manner in which Anderson distributed steroids. Jurors can’t infer that Bonds received steroids because other ballplayers did, she told them.
Paid About $10,000
Jason Giambi said he paid Anderson about $10,000 for the substances he received and that twice he received packages with false names on them, including that of retired Cincinnati Reds catcher Johnny Bench.
“I took it as very secretive to get your hands on it and be quiet about it,” said Giambi, 40, who in 2009 joined the Rockies in Denver.
He said he stopped taking the drugs in 2003. He said the Clear and the Cream didn’t have much effect on him.
Jeremy Giambi said he met Anderson through Jason in 2002. He testified that he had his blood and urine tested through Anderson, who told him he had some “alternative, undetectable steroids.”
Jeremy Giambi testified that he then received packages from the trainer containing testosterone, human growth hormone, the Cream and the Clear, syringes and calendars.
Jeremy Giambi, 36, last played in the major leagues in 2003 with the Boston Red Sox. He spent parts of six seasons with the Kansas City Royals, Oakland Athletics, Philadelphia Phillies and the Red Sox.
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