Former pitching great Roger Clemens's federal perjury trial has been declared a mistrial after only two days of testimony due to an inadvertent error by U.S. prosecutors.
Clemens was charged with perjury, obstruction of justice, and making false statements about using steroids and other enhancement drugs.
It will be many more months before Clemens is back in a court room - once again prolonging the discussion about baseball players and steroids, and what players deserve to be in the Hall of Fame during an era when steroids was used.
Clemens's popularity in light of the steroids issue provides an interesting look into fans' perceptions of baseball players.
A February 2008 USA Today/Gallup poll found that 57 percent of baseball fans believe Roger Clemens lied in testimony to Congress that he never used steroids, compared to 31 percent who think he's telling the truth, and 12 percent who had no opinion.
In the same poll, 45 percent of baseball fans had a favorable opinion of Clemens while 37 percent had an unfavorable opinion.
Though not a scientific poll, ESPN's SportsNation recently asked How might the outcome of Roger Clemens' trial for lying to Congress affect your opinion of his Hall of Fame prospects? Based on 4,850 responses, 33 percent said they would vote for him regardless, 20 percent would vote for him if he's acquitted, and 47 percent wouldn't vote for him regardless of the outcome.
The other big baseball name who was involved in a similar situation was Barry Bonds. However, Bonds has been viewed less favorably. In the 2008 USA Today/Gallup poll, 46 percent said Bonds should be elected to the Hall of Fame while 50 percent said he should not be.
Unlike with Bonds, Clemens's prosecutors say they have the seven-time Cy Young winner's DNA linked to steroids, though the Clemens defense team says the evidence was manufactured. Using the DNA is manufactured defense might be a hard sell, and Brian McNamee, Clemens's former trainer, says he used to inject the pitcher with steroids.
Clemens played in a baseball culture where several players have admitted to taking steroids. With possible DNA evidence and his trainer's testimony, it might be difficult to believe that Clemens avoided the steroid scene.
Whether Clemens is found guilty or innocent of perjury, obstruction of justice, and making false statements, probably won't detract baseball fans' opinion on his possible steroid use.