WASHINGTON (AP) – Roger Clemens told Yankees teammate Andy Pettitte nearly 10 years ago that he used human growth hormone, Pettitte said in a sworn affidavit to Congress, The Associated Press learned Tuesday.

Pettitte disclosed the conversation to the congressional committee holding Wednesday’s hearings on drug use in baseball, a person familiar with the affidavit said. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the document had not been made public.

According to the person familiar with the affidavit, who said it was signed Friday night, Pettitte also said Clemens backtracked when the subject of HGH came up again in conversation in 2005, before the same House committee held the first hearing on steroids in baseball.

Pettitte said in the affidavit that he asked Clemens in 2005 what he would do if asked by the media about HGH, given his admission years earlier. According to the account told to the AP, the affidavit said Clemens responded by saying Pettitte misunderstood the previous exchange in 1999 or 2000 and that, in fact, Clemens had been talking about HGH use by his wife in the original conversation. The existence of the affidavit first was reported by The New York Times.

Selig: No third-party needed for drug testing

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – Bud Selig says Major League Baseball doesn’t need to turn its drug testing over to a third party but should increase the amount of independence of the doctor who currently runs it.

Dr. Bryan Smith, MLB’s independent program administrator, is best suited to run the program because he understands baseball’s intricacies, Selig said Tuesday prior to a banquet for fans of the Notre Dame baseball team.

“Every sport has different nuances,” Selig said. “Comparing our sport to Olympics sometimes in terms of penalties is just not fair because we play every day, every year. But we need to work on independence and transparency. There’s no question about that.”

The Mitchell Report recommended that baseball increase independence and transparency.

“If it doesn’t work, I’m so anxious to solve the problem that I won’t rule anything out at this point,” Selig said.

Players and owners have had a series of meetings on the Mitchell Report, which includes recommendations subject to collective bargaining. WADA wants baseball to get out of the drug-testing business and turn the sport’s program to outsiders.

Selig did say he wants the sport’s top executives, such as executive vice president for labor relations Rob Manfred, out of the process. Selig said they “have better things to do with their time.”

Selig’s statements came on the eve of the long-awaited congressional hearing starring Roger Clemens and Brian McNamee, his former trainer. McNamee has said he injected Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone from 1998-01.

Selig said it wasn’t an ideal situation for the hearing to be held on the first day pitchers and catchers report to spring training – a time of excitement and hope for baseball fans.

“Things don’t ever work out exactly the way you’d like, and I know there will be a lot of attention tomorrow, obviously,” Selig said.

But he added he doesn’t think the congressional hearings will cause any long-term harm.

“Look, we’ve broken attendance records for four straight years at the same time with this situation going on, and we’ll break one for a fifth year. That doesn’t in any way obviate my desire to really strengthen our programs in every way. And we will do that,” he said.

Selig said he is examining each person named in the Mitchell Report on a case by case basis.

“That’s what I’m doing now,” he said. “I do know the senator did make that recommendation and I understood why. We’re all trying to move ahead. But I need to look at it case by case. I think I have that responsibility.”

Selig also responded to former pitcher John Rocker’s claim he flunked a drug test ordered by Major League Baseball in 2000 and that Selig knew about it. Selig said he was not aware of the test because Rocker was referred to the confidential Employee Assistance Program.

“John Rocker’s theory that I knew or other people knew is just wrong,” he said.

AP-ES-02-12-08 1915EST

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