Dodgers talk to Little Leaguers about steroids

LOS ANGELES -- There was a steroids awareness clinic at
Dodger Stadium, and it had nothing to do with Barry Bonds.

Approximately 100 Little Leaguers were at the ballpark before
Thursday night's game against Bonds' San Francisco Giants for a
two-hour session led by Los Angeles center fielder Juan Pierre,
hitting coach Bill Mueller and former Dodger Lou Johnson. The boys
and girls, ages 12 to 17, received a Dodger goodie bag.

"I'm not touching no Barry questions," Pierre said to
reporters later. "I didn't even realize when they asked me to do
it, what was the date or when it was going to be. It was all for
the kids, just telling them about the severity of taking

The 43-year-old Bonds headed into Thursday night's series finale
with 754 home runs, one from tying Hank Aaron's record. There are
suspicions the slugger's pursuit was fueled by steroids and other
performance-enhancing drugs, which he has long denied knowingly

"We bring in a group of kids, and even if we only get through
to one or two of them, that makes it all worth it," said Dodgers
strength and conditioning coach Doug Jarrow, who ran the clinic.

Later in the ballpark, fans were more vocal leading up to the
series finale than the previous two nights.

"Hey Barry, where's Greg Anderson? Where is he, Barry?" one
man hollered from the sky-high seats during batting practice in
reference to the slugger's incarcerated trainer. "How much are you
paying him? We don't hate you because you're a cheater, it's
because you're a jerk."

"HGH!" another yelled from way up in right field. That's the
abbreviated version of human growth hormone -- one of the substances
Bonds allegedly took.

In their book "Game of Shadows," released last year, authors
Lance Williams and Mark Fainaru-Wada wrote that Bonds started using
steroids because he was jealous of the attention paid to Mark
McGwire's home run race with Sammy Sosa in 1998.

The awareness event, held in conjunction with the Taylor Hooton
Foundation and the Professional Baseball Strength and Conditioning
Coaches Society, had been rescheduled from its original date, June

"Due to a scheduling conflict with the Taylor Hooton
Foundation, we had to move it. It wasn't until 10 days ago that we
realized that we were playing the Giants," Dodgers spokesman Josh
Rawitch said. "It was a complete coincidence. We gave the Giants a
call, a heads' up, just so they weren't caught off guard, and
nobody there lodged any complaints with us."

Bonds, a seven-time NL MVP and 14-time All-Star, broke McGwire's
season mark with 73 home runs in 2001, then passed Babe Ruth for
second on the career homers list last year -- leaving only Hammerin'
Hank in his way.

When asked whether he thought Bonds had used steroids, Pierre
responded: "I don't know. I'm staying away from that one."

The awareness event featured four stations -- nutrition, strength
and conditioning, medical information and hitting.

"I saw that today when I was coming into the park in the taxi --
steroids awareness clinic," Giants infielder Rich Aurilia said.
"Pretty ironic, huh? You think they planned it that way?"

San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy wasn't worried about it.

"What they're doing here, I don't have any thoughts on it,"
Bochy said.