Tony La Russa Won’t Read Book About Mark McGwire, Steroids


February 25, 2010

Tony La Russa Won't Read Book About Mark McGwire, Steroids JUPITER, Fla. — St. Louis
Cardinals manager Tony La Russa has no plans to read a new book that
suggests Mark McGwire knew steroids would boost his power at the plate.

The book, to be released Monday, is by
McGwire's estranged brother, Jay McGwire. He says Big Mac knew he
became a better hitter because steroids enhanced his size and strength.

Last month, McGwire admitted taking
steroids and human growth hormone during the 1990s, but said he only did
so to recover from injuries — not to improve his performance. He hasn't
commented on the book as he works with hitters at the Cardinals' spring
training facility in his new job as batting coach.

La Russa told reporters Thursday that
the allegations sound familiar. He said someone he knew read an advance
copy and it doesn't sound as though the book includes
"first-page-to-last-page damning stuff about Mark."

The manager said he doesn't plan to
read it.

"What's the point?" La Russa said.
"It's stuff that's already been gone over a bunch of times. I don't know
what it's going to change."

Estranged from his brother for eight
years because of a family dispute, Jay McGwire has gone public in Mark
and Me: Mark McGwire and the Truth Behind Baseball's Worst-Kept Secret
which is scheduled for publication Monday by TriumphBooks.

Jay McGwire says in the book that he
persuaded his brother to start using steroids regularly in 1994 and set
him up with a supplier. He says Mark regularly used an array of drugs
through 1996 that included Deca-Durabolin, human growth hormone,
Dianabol, Winstrol and Primobolan. McGwire later used androstenedione, a
steroid precursor that wasn't banned by baseball until 2004, when it
became a controlled substance.

Jay McGwire, a former bodybuilder who
turns 40 on May 5, said he was introduced to steroids by friends in
1989, beginning with Anavar pills. He says his brother only gave in
to using steroids after an injury-filled 1993 season.

La Russa, who managed Mark in Oakland
before the pair reunited in St. Louis, recalled seeing Jay McGwire in
the Athletics clubhouse, but said he didn't think Jay was taking

Mark McGwire hit 70 homers for the
Cardinals in 1998, shattering Roger Maris' record of 61 set in 1961.

The brothers haven't spoken since
2002. They fell out after Jay McGwire's stepson, Eric, tickled Mark and
caused Mark to spill coffee on himself. Mark then swatted Eric on the
backside. Jay's wife, Francine, then refused to attend Mark's wedding.

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