Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols will be taking legal action against former MLB player Jack Clark after Clark made comments accusing Pujols of using performance-enhancing drugs, according to Los Angeles Times reporter Mike DiGiovanna.
In a statement released by Pujols, the slugger said that it was "irresponsible and reckless for Jack Clark to falsely accuse me of using PEDs."
I’ve said time and time again that I would never take, or even consider taking, anything illegal. I’ve been tested hundreds of times throughout my career and never once have I tested positive. It is irresponsible and reckless for Jack Clark to have falsely accused me of using PED’s. My faith in Jesus Christ, and my respect for this game are too important to me. I would never be able to look my wife or kids in the eye if I had done what this man is accusing me of.
I know people are tired of athletes saying they are innocent, asking for the public to believe in them, only to have their sins exposed later down the road. But I am not one of those athletes, and I will not stand to have my name and my family’s name, dragged through the mud.
I am currently in the process of taking legal action against Jack Clark and his employers at WGNU 920AM. I am going to send a message that you cannot act in a reckless manner, like they have, and get away with it. If I have to be the athlete to carry the torch and pave the way for other innocent players to see that you can do something about it, I am proud to be that person. I have five young children and I take being a role model very seriously. The last thing I want is for the fans, and especially the kids out there, to question my reputation and character.
Clark, as a co-host of a sports talk radio show on WGNU (920 AM), said Pujols' former personal trainer Chris Mihfield told Clark that Pujols was using performance-enhancing drugs.
According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Clark said that Mihfield “had told me what he was doing with ‘Poolie’ — threw him batting practice, worked him out, shot him up, all that stuff." Clark brought up Pujols' name up twice in the first week working at the station when discussing the topic of performance enhancing drugs.
From the St. Louis Post-Dispatch report :
And Clark, who still hasn’t completed his first full week as co-host of the afternoon drive-time with Kevin Slaten at WGNU (920 AM), isn’t just some former athlete who has been out of the loop for decades and shooting from the hip. He was the hitting coach of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the early 2000s when he said he was told by Chris Mihlfeld, who for a time was Pujols’ personal trainer, that Mihlfeld “shot him up.”
Clark has brought Pujols’ situation up at least twice already on the air. The first time, after Slaten said last Friday that he long has believed that Pujols “has been a juicer,” Clark jumped in before Slaten finished his thought and said, “I know for a fact he was. The trainer that worked with him, threw him batting practice from Kansas City, that worked him out every day, basically told me that’s what he did.”
Clark, a retired player who hit 340 home runs over 18 MLB seasons, also accused Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander of using performance-enhancing drugs. He said Verlander’s dip in velocity and overall dominance is correlated with Verlander no longer using the drugs after Verlander signed a long-term deal with the Tigers.
“Verlander was like Nolan Ryan, he threw 97, 98, 100 miles an hour from the first inning to the ninth inning,” Clark said on the air. “He got that big contract, now he can barely reach 92, 93. What happened to it? He has no arm problems, nothing’s wrong. It’s just the signs are there.Verlander responded by calling Clark's comments "moronic."
“The greed … they juice up, they grab the money and it’s just a free pass to steal is the way I look at it.”