Baseball: McGwire finally 'comes clean' over steroid use in 1998

Former St Louis Cardinals slugger Mark McGwire has admitted using steroids when he was a player, including 1998 when he broke the single-season home-run record.

"I used steroids during my playing career and I apologise," the 46-year-old said in a statement yesterday.

McGwire belted 70 home runs for St Louis in 1998 to shatter the record of 61 hit by Roger Maris for the New York Yankees in 1961.

The record was then broken again when Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants registered 73 homers in 2001.

McGwire last played in 2001 and was hired in October as hitting coach for the Cardinals. He said he wanted to set the record straight before beginning his new role with the team.

"It's time for me to talk about the past and to confirm what people have suspected," he said.

"I remember trying steroids very briefly in the 1989-90 off-season and then after I was injured in 1993 I used steroids again. I used them on occasion throughout the 90s including during the 1998 season.

"I wish I had never touched steroids. It was foolish and it was a mistake. I truly apologize. Looking back I wish I had never played during the steroid era," added McGwire who started his career with the Oakland Athletics.

He joined the A's in 1986 and his 49 homers the following year led the American League and set a rookie record. The 12-times All-Star was traded to St Louis during the 1997 season.

McGwire is eighth on the all-time home-run list with 583.

Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig welcomed the former slugger's admission.

"I am pleased Mark McGwire has confronted his use of performance-enhancing substances as a player," Selig said in a statement. "Being truthful is always the correct course of action.

"This statement of contrition I believe will make Mark's re-entry to the game much smoother and easier."

Selig said drug testing and tough sanctions for doping had helped to clean up the sport and "Mark's admission today is another step in the right direction."

McGwire declined to mention whether he had used performance-enhancing drugs during testimony in March 2005 before a U.S. government committee exploring the use of steroids in baseball.

"I'm not here to talk about the past. I'm here to be positive about this subject," he said.

In 2007 the Mitchell Report on the use of performance-enhancing drugs in baseball mentioned McGwire among 89 players linked to doping.

Suspicion of doping and the former slugger's reluctance to discuss his involvement tarnished his image, with a backlash seen in Hall of Fame voting over the past four years.

McGwire, in his fourth year of eligibility, last week received only 23.7 percent of the vote by members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, well shy of the 75 percent needed for admission to the Hall.

Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
art'Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' followed hoax reports artist had been arrested and unveiled
Pistorius leaves Pretoria High Court to be taken to prison

Stephanie first after her public appearance as a woman at Rad Fest 2014

Life and Style

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'


Endangered species spotted in a creek in the Qinling mountains

Life and Style

Company says data is only collected under 'temporary' identities that are discarded every 15 minutes

peopleJust weeks after he created dress for Alamuddin-Clooney wedding
Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Arts and Entertainment
George Lucas poses with a group of Star Wars-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2010

George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios

football West Brom vs Man Utd match report: Blind grabs point, but away form a problem for Van Gaal
Life and Style

Some experiencing postnatal depression don't realise there is a problem. What can be done?

Arts and Entertainment
Gotham is coming to UK shores this autumn
tvGotham, episode 2, review
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

C#.Net Developer - C#, ASP.Net, HTML, JavaScript, CSS, MSSQL

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: C#.Net Developer - C#, ASP.Net, HTML...

English Teacher

£21000 - £31000 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: English Teacher - So...

French Teacher

£21000 - £31000 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: French Teacher ? Sou...

Geography Teacher

£21000 - £31000 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Geography Teacher ? ...

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album