Monday, July 17, 2006

Heyman: Giambi Speaks About Testimoney [J. Mark English]

Jon Heyman, CNNSI --

While Barry Bonds awaits word as to whether he'll be indicted for perjury and possibly other charges (such as tax evasion), the Yankees' Jason Giambi is enjoying life again. Giambi's mind is clear, he's swinging the bat well again and, most importantly, he's out of the steroids spotlight.
Giambi and Bonds once engaged in a friendly rivalry as the Bay Area's top two power hitters. Then they experienced BALCO together. Now Bonds is alone in his predicament.
Giambi still has a soft spot for his former Bay Area rival. "I feel for him,'' Giambi said on Sunday at Yankee Stadium. "It's got to be very distracting for Barry. It's a very tough situation.''
The two sluggers' circumstances were different. Giambi had different friends, and different hangers-on. Both players behaved differently -- Giambi is as friendly as Bonds is abrasive. And while they both testified about BALCO before a grand jury, their testimony was vastly different. While Giambi admitted his involvement with steroids, Bonds contended he didn't knowingly take steroids, according to the San Francisco Chronicle's reports of the testimony.
Giambi took a lot of heat after his testimony became public, and he was briefly viewed as the face of steroids. Since then, the heat has moved to Bonds and Rafael Palmeiro.
While he can't speak directly about Bonds' situation, Giambi is sure he did the right thing by testifying truthfully.
"I had to go in there and do what I had to do," Giambi said. "I had to do what was best for me. It was tough at the beginning. Now that everything has come out and I've gone forward, it's been a lot better. I don't know anything that's going on with Barry. But for my situation, I did the best thing I could. It was the right thing to do at the time.''