A Friend in Need …

Loyalty, in a suit

Loyalty, in a suit

It’s time for some dictionary revision. Next to the word “friend,” insert Greg Anderson’s mug (Not his mug shot.) Anderson is Barry Bonds’ former personal trainer and childhood friend and right now it looks like the man standing between Bonds and a Marion Jones experience is Anderson. And if history is an indicator, Bonds will remain a free man. On Thursday, just a day after unsealing 200 pages of evidence in the goverment’s perjury case against the home run king, Judge Susan Illston told prosecutors that much of it (doping calenders and positive drug tests) won’t likely be admitted for the March 2 trial if a direct link to Bonds is not provided. That link? Right now, it’s only Anderson – who already spent more than a year in jail for refusing to testify before a grand jury investigating his friend. Since being released from the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, Calif., in November 2007, Anderson has shown no indication that his resolve is wavering. Without Anderson linking the codes and numbers on the calendars and tests to Bonds, or saying he told Bonds he was injecting him with steroids when he needled him with the Clear in 2003, well, your tax dollars spent chasing Bonds may be ashes. The judge also asked whether the Clear, which was not classified as a steroid until 2005, was illegal when Bonds was alleged to have taken it, an indication that offers another dose of “reasonable doubt” to the proceedings. And Illston order prosecutors to turn over to the defense the findings of a secret internal investigation into the conduct of government agent Jeff Novitzky, a lead investigator throughout the pursuit. Bonds didn’t quite hit the dinger (that won’t come until the judge rules officially in a few days about the admissibility of the evidence in question), but the former slugger went appeared to go three for three. Why would Anderson flip now? Beyond demonstrating an uncanny loyalty to Bonds, the guy has lived enough drama to make the feds look like Girl Scouts selling cookies (although those tykes can be quite relentless). Anderson’s father was killed after a poker game in 1976. His girlfriend was killed while he was in college. He also previously spent three months in jail and three months on home detention for pleading guilty to steroid distribution and money laundering in the investigation of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative. Even if Anderson were to change his mind and sing, one of his own attorneys, Paula Canny, has said he’d be an unreliable witness. “He’s a multi-convicted felon who’s going to be impeached for everything,” she told the New York Daily News. Fortunately for Bonds, friends don’t have to be perfect – just a true friend.

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