Rumor: a Roger Clemens indictment is not far off

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Put this firmly in the category of scuttlebutt and rumor, not news, but someone who tends to know about this kind of thing is telling me that the feds could obtain an indictment on Roger Clemens any day now. The last intelligence my source had on it was that it could happen “around the All-Star break.”

To be clear — predicting indictments is kind of a sucker’s game. I had a client under federal grand jury investigation for 18 months once, and every other day someone called me to tell me “hey, your dude is about to get indicted.”  Funny thing happened, though: he never got indicted. I’d like to say it was because I’m a totally awesome lawyer, but that’s not true (if it was, would I be doing this for a living? OK, maybe I would, but still).  The fact is that no one on the outside of these things really ever knows how it’s going to break until it does.

All of that said, this is some rather specific intelligence on the time frame. And to be sure, it involves a guy who was really damn brazen during his testimony in front of Congress and was directly contradicted by another witness. The feds have been investigating Clemens for a long time now, and have been presenting testimony to the grand jury for months.  Just this morning his old boss was talking about a lot more information coming out soon. That tends to happen when someone gets indicted. You get the sense they want him, and in our system if a prosecutor wants someone bad enough, they can at least be fairly confident of getting an indictment. I mean, we’ve all heard the old adage about how you can indict a
ham sandwich, right?

So yeah, this might merely be smoke. But I think there’s enough heat to it that we shouldn’t act all shocked if Roger Clemens is indicted sometime soon.

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to minor-league deal

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The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.

Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.

Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.