We all know about the infamous juiced ex-Bash Brother Jose Canseco who claims he introduced PEDs and steroids to Mark McGwire, Jason Giambi and other MLB players. Now, a homeless ex-Athletic player says he dealth the juice to Canseco. Rusty Tillman played with the Mets, the As, and lastly with the Giants. Homeless near Jacksonville, FL, Tillman says he should be remembered as the man who juiced Canseco. (to the Florica TImes-Union)
...Tillman, now 48. Now homeless. He is desperate to cling to the things that are good in his life. Even if he has to flash back 30 years to find them.
Before he roamed the unemployment rolls, Tillman claims he knew the juice, the women, and the fast times with Canseco in the baseball big leagues.
Even after he bottomed out, Tillman said he never sold out his baseball family to make a buck. Instead, he accepted it as his short-lived fame slipped away with his modest fortune. Instead, he fumed as he watched ex-Oakland Athletics teammate Jose Canseco rake in attention and money with two books about baseball's steroids scandal.
Tillman said four teammates, including Canseco, bought and used the steroids Tillman smuggled from Mexico when he played for the A's. It was 1986, a year after the Mets traded Tillman and he ended up in Oakland.
Once his steroids confession starts spilling out, Tillman makes it clear he's not naming names like Canseco did. Tillman sees himself as a backup outfielder who knew how to take one for the team.
"The code is whatever you do, you're on your own. I'm not going to take you down with me. I didn't get the time that these guys got. But I was one of the lucky ones who got to be around these guys. And I kept my mouth shut."
Canseco claims to have gotten the juice from a high school friend. However, TIllman says he was the pipeline for the juice form Mexico.
Canseco didn't mention Tillman in his two books and didn't respond to interview requests through his attorney, Gregory Emerson. In his 2008 book Vindicated, Canseco describes getting his first steroids in 1984 from a weight-lifter friend from high school.
"I was his first in major leagues," Tillman says. "... I'm the one who started bringing it from Mexico."
Tillman said he got the steroids when he'd make extra money playing in a Mexican pro league in the off-season. He started using them after a torn rotator cuff sidelined him. He'd already suffered through a wrist injury, getting so many cortisone shots that his black skin turned white around the injection site. Tillman also had multiple knee surgeries.
The steroids were cheap and easy to buy at Mexican pharmacies. And they got results.
When Tillman took charter flights back to America, he said no one would check a pro ball player's bags. When his steroids supply ran low, someone he trusted crossed the border and brought him more. The person he named refused to do a Times-Union interview.
"It wasn't that I was trying to make money on this," Tillman explains of the 30 to 40 boxes he said he sold for $400 or $500 each. "It was for the family."
He took a shot a week, something to give him an edge so he was ready to come off the bench.
"A lot of people think it's cheating, but if you don't go out there and perform, they're going to say you're a bum."...
While Tillman said no one ever caught him, accused him or arrested him for steroids, he suspects the game blackballed him for it.
"Word might have gotten around that the real Juiceman was here," he said...
"There's a dark side of all of sports. What I done is what I done."