Velarde, Benard: Bonds' trainer provided drugs

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Velarde, Benard: Bonds' trainer provided drugs

March 30, 2011

Editor's note: Follow all the developments at the trial with Kate Longworth's Twitter feed (@KLongworthCSN) from the courtroom. We'll have comprehensive analysis on SportsNet Central tonight.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- As prosecutors moved closer to finishing their case against Barry Bonds, former major league infielder Randy Velarde described meeting the slugger's personal trainer outside spring training ballparks for injections of human growth hormone.

Velarde said he sought out Greg Anderson because of his link to Bonds, and they met "in various parking lots."

"I can't remember each," Velarde said Wednesday during his 12 minutes of federal court testimony.

He wasn't sure exactly how many times he met Anderson. He was asked whether it was more than 10.

"That would be a fair number," he said.

And always, there would be an injection.

"Every meeting," he said.NEWS: Clemens says he's eager for trial

Velarde became the fourth and likely final ball player to say he purchased performance-enhancing drugs from Anderson, who has been jailed for contempt after refusing to testify against Bonds, his childhood friend.

With Anderson unavailable, prosecutors called Jason Giambi, Jeremy Giambi, Marvin Benard and Velarde as witnesses to describe Anderson's drug-dealing an attempt to show jurors Bonds must have known the substances he was receiving from Anderson were performance-enhancing drugs. None of the players had personal knowledge of any drug use by Bonds.

Three more players were among the 50 potential witnesses on a list submitted to the court by prosecutors on March 7 1987 NL Rookie of the Year Benito Santiago, Armando Rios and Bobby Estalella but Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew A. Parrella told U.S. District Judge Susan Illston on Wednesday that the government intended to call just three more witnesses.

His statement came as a surprise. Prosecutors said in the March 7 filing that Estalella would testify Bonds admitted to him that he used performance-enhancing drugs and they had several discussions about the subject.

Parrella said his final three witnesses would be Bonds' physician Dr. Arthur Ting, Bonds' former personal shopper Kathy Hoskins and former UCLA Olympic Analytical Laboratory head Dr. Don Catlin. After that, the defense can start calling its witnesses.

Benard finished testifying Wednesday morning and was followed by Velarde. Then came a current IRS special agent and a former one, along with six of the people who worked at the UCLA lab as it processed Bonds' 2003 drug test. Giving often tedious testimony, the eight established the chain of evidence for the jury of Bonds' urine from the time federal agents seized it from Quest Diagnostics in April 2004 until the time it tested positive for the steroid Tetrahydrogestrinone (TGH) in March 2006.

After just five witnesses appeared in the first four days of testimony, the trial's pace has increased. Five witnesses finished their testimony on Tuesday and 10 more completed their questioning on Wednesday.

With prosecutors planning to read portions of Bonds' grand jury testimony to the jury, the government's presentation is likely to wrap up by early next week. Thursday's session will be cut short because Illston will leave to attend the swearing in of a judge late in the day. After that, the trial resumes Monday.

Bonds, baseball's season and career home run king, is charged with four counts of lying and one count of obstruction for telling a grand jury in 2003 that he didn't knowingly use performance-enhancing drugs. Wearing a blue suit and blue tie, he took notes and conferred with lead lawyer Allen Ruby during a day filled with science, such as explanations of how an isotope-ratio mass spectrometer works and the difference between carbon-12 and carbon-13.

"I think we are all feeling a little obtuse right now," Illston said late in the day.

Velarde played mostly for the New York Yankees but also for the Angels and Athletics in a major league career from 1987-02. He met Anderson in 2001 through Estalella, who split that year between Bonds' Giants and the Yankees.

"He mentioned to me he could get some stuff through Greg and gave me his name and number," Velarde said.

Anderson at first sent Velarde some pills, but the player felt they weren't benefiting him

He then switched to injections and said after them he felt he had more endurance and strength. He paid Anderson 500 to 800.

At the start of the morning, Ruby cross-examined Benard and tried to imply Benard didn't know that substances Anderson gave him called "the clear" and "the cream" were steroids. Bonds told the grand jury Anderson told him they were "flaxseed oil" and arthritic balm.

Benard admitted he met with the prosecution when he arrived in San Francisco this week from his home in Washington state.

"At this meeting you had with these prosecutors, they told you they wanted you to say that Anderson told you he was giving you a steroid, an undetectable steroid," Ruby said.

Benard said prosecutors reviewed his grand jury testimony with them.

"They showed me what I said earlier, when my memory was clearer," Benard said.

"Isn't it true, Mr. Benard, that you were asked many times at the grand jury what Anderson said to you about this new material he was giving you and you never said that he had called it an undetectable steroid?" Ruby asked.

"You got a better idea of what I said in there than I do," Benard told him.

Giants lineup: Morse gets first start, Posey out vs Padres

Giants lineup: Morse gets first start, Posey out vs Padres

Programming note: Padres-Giants coverage starts today at 6:00pm with Giants Pregame Live on NBC Sports Bay Area, and streaming live right here.

Andy Green and Bruce Bochy issued their lineups for today's series opener at AT&T Park:

Padres (9-15)

1. Manuel Margot (R) CF
2. Erick Aybar (S) SS
3. Wil Myers (R) 1B
4. Yangervis Solarte (S) 2B
5. Ryan Schimpf (L) 3B
6. Cory Spangenberg (L) LF
7. Austin Hedges (R) C
8. Jabari Blash (R) RF
9. Luis Perdomo (R) P

Giants (8-15) 

1. Joe Panik (L) 2B
2. Brandon Belt (L) LF
3. Hunter Pence (R) RF
4. Michael Morse (R) 1B
5. Christian Arroyo (R) SS
6. Conor Gillaspie (L) 3B
7. Nick Hundley (R) C
8. Drew Stubbs (R) CF
9. Jeff Samardzija (R) P

Reuben Foster: Shoulder recovery on pace for training camp clearance

Reuben Foster: Shoulder recovery on pace for training camp clearance

SANTA CLARA – Linebacker Reuben Foster is likely to be a spectator when the 49ers hold their rookie minicamp next week.

But Foster said he is on pace to be fully cleared for football activity by the time the 49ers open training camp in late July. Recent national reports have suggested Foster would require another surgery on his right shoulder.

“That’s not accurate at all,” said Foster, who took part in a press conference on Friday after the 49ers selected him with the No. 31 overall pick in the draft on Thursday. “I’m fine. I’m on schedule.”

Foster said he sustained the tear of the labrum in his right shoulder during Alabama’s national semifinal game against Washington. He played in the championship game against Clemson with the injury.

He underwent surgery on his rotator cuff that forced him to sit out drills at the NFL scouting combine in February. Foster was sent home from Indianapolis after an argument with a hospital worker while he was waiting to undergo a physical.

There were reports Foster could require additional surgery after he went through the medical re-check in Indianapolis.

“I’m making big progress,” Foster said. “I’ll be limited in OTAs. Training camp, I’ll be full-go, but if it’s my decision, I think I can go now.”

Later, Foster said the 49ers have all of his medical information.

“I guarantee they have enough X-rays, exams, MRIs to know where I stand,” he said. “I had the surgery. They already knew how many weeks I was out.”

Foster dropped in the draft over apparent concerns about his shoulder and character issues. Alabama coach Nick Saban told AL.com on Thursday that Foster did not consult him before undergoing surgery.

"Look, the way we like for things to get handled, that didn't get handled," Saban said. "We have the best doctors in the world in Dr. (James) Andrews and Dr. (Lyle) Cain who operate on most NFL players and his agent chose to take him someplace else. I think (Andrews and Cain) have tremendous credibility.

"So, you know, all these choices and decisions that you make have consequences and I hate it for our players when they do it, but he didn't seek my advice in what he should do. So, if that was an issue, that was an issue. It shouldn't have been an issue but if it was, I don't really know much about it."