The already contentious atmosphere of Roger Clemens's federal perjury trial reached a fever pitch Wednesday as the wife of Brian McNamee testified.
Eileen McNamee contradicted her estranged husband's account of how he showed her the evidence in the case and stored it at her insistence. In her testimony, she said she first discovered the FedEx box containing needles, vials and other materials came when in a basement preparing for a flood. When she asked him about it, she said that she was told he was saving things for his "protection."
That answer is consistent with McNamee's testimony that the goal, prompted by his wife's nagging, was to have evidence to prevent McNamee from becoming the fall guy if the alleged drug abuse became known.
When Eileen McNamee first took the stand, she invoked her Fifth Amendment privilege on three questions asked outside of the jury's presence in order to finalize her grant of immunity.
Clemens' lawyers hope Eileen McNamee will help discredit Brian McNamee, the government's chief witness.
-- Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton, who electrified the 2008 Home Run Derby, told reporters that he won't participate in this year's competition.
Hamilton set a Derby record when he bashed 28 homers in the first round of the 2008 contest at Yankee Stadium, but hasn't participated since.
"It's just not the right time," Hamilton said. "I haven't done it the past couple of years. I want to be healthy and the best I can be. I don't want to risk anything entertaining the fans. So I respectfully declined again. You just take one swing ... you've got to be smart about it."
Hamilton eventually lost to Minnesota Twins' first baseman Justin Morneau in 2008 despite the historic first-round performance. The Rangers slugger is already on track to start for the American League outfield for the fifth straight Midsummer Classic.
-- Detroit Tigers catcher Alex Avila has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with a tight right hamstring.
The team purchased the contract of catcher Bryan Holaday from Triple-A Toledo to take the place of Avila, who joins starting center fielder Austin Jackson, starting left fielder Andy Dirks, starting pitcher Doug Fister, reliever Al Alburquerque and Victor Martinez on Detroit's DL.
Avila had missed the previous two games against the Yankees after he woke up Saturday with a tight hamstring.
The All-Star is batting .250 this season with five home runs and 20 RBIs.
Also, the Tigers designated catcher Omir Santos for assignment, and called up right-handed reliever Jose Ortega to provide bullpen depth.
-- The Cleveland Indians activated Johnny Damon Wednesday from the Paternity List and optioned Luke Carlin to Triple-A Columbus.
Damon, 38, is currently hitting .180 (16-89) with nine runs scored, one home run and five RBI in 25 games for Cleveland since being added to the roster May 1. He last appeared in a game Saturday against Minnesota and is 5-for-17 (.294) over his last five games.
Carlin made three starts at catcher.