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The Days In Sports

Tejada pleads guilty, apologizes

February 12, 2009|Bill Shaikin | Associated Press

Miguel Tejada became the first high-profile player convicted of a crime stemming from baseball's steroids era, pleading guilty Wednesday in federal court in Washington to misleading Congress about the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Under a plea agreement with the same prosecutors pursuing a perjury indictment against Roger Clemens, Tejada admitted he withheld information about an ex-teammate's use of steroids and human growth hormone when questioned by a House committee's investigators in August 2005.

Tejada -- the 2002 American League MVP with the Oakland Athletics and a five-time All-Star shortstop now with the Houston Astros -- also acknowledged he bought HGH while playing for the A's, but said he threw the drugs away without using them. Prosecutors said they have no evidence to contradict that.

"I just want to apologize," Tejada said as he fought back tears hours later at a Houston news conference, where he did not take questions. "I made a mistake, and now I know how serious of a mistake that I made for not answering a question about another teammate."

The misdemeanor can lead to a year in jail, although federal guidelines call for a lighter sentence.

An ex-girlfriend of Roberto Alomar filed a lawsuit alleging the former baseball star insisted on unprotected sex for four years despite having AIDS.

"This is a very private, personal matter and I greatly appreciate all the support I have received in the past few days from my family, friends and colleagues in baseball," Alomar said in a statement. "I am in very good health and I ask that you respect my privacy during this time." Alomar said the lawsuit is "filled with lies."

TENNIS

Serena Williams wins in Paris

Top-ranked Serena Williams defeated Iveta Benesova of the Czech Republic, 6-1, 6-4, in Paris to move into the second round of the Open GDF Suez. . . . Top-seeded Rafael Nadal rallied from a set down to beat Simone Bolelli of Italy, 4-6, 6-2, 7-5, and advance to the second round at the ABN Amro in Rotterdam, Netherlands. . . . Third-seeded James Blake defeated Vince Spadea, 6-3, 6-4, and sixth-seeded Sam Querrey defeated Marcos Baghdatis, 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (5), in the first round of the SAP Open at San Jose.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Eastern Washington put on probation

The NCAA penalized Eastern Washington's football program for violations under former coach Paul Wulff, who now coaches at Washington State. The Eastern program has been placed on three years' probation and is banned from postseason play next season.

Georgia Tech cornerback Jerrard Tarrant was reinstated to the team after being suspended for more than seven months. Tarrant, who was suspended in June, had been accused of rape. The charges were eventually dropped.

ETC.

Armstrong scraps drug-testing plan

Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong scrapped his plan to set up an independent drug-testing program on because of high costs and nearly impossible logistics. Anti-doping expert Don Catlin, whom Armstrong was teaming with to administer the tests, told the Associated Press that both sides realized the program wasn't workable this year.

The baseball players' union will not provide unsigned free agents with a training camp of their own this spring. "After consultation with player leadership, we're not going to open a camp," union general counsel Michael Weiner said Wednesday.

With dozens of free agents still unsigned and teams reporting to spring training this week, the union had considered operating a camp similar to the one it ran in 1995.

-- Bill Shaikin

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