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Clemens, who turned 48 this month, ranks ninth on the career list with 354 victories. He once was considered a certain first-ballot Hall of Famer, but getting in at all is now in question.

“In my opinion, he’s a Hall of Famer. Period,” said New York Yankees slugger Lance Berkman, who played with Clemens in Houston. “Whatever you want to say about the guy, he belongs in the Hall of Fame. In my opinion, legacy-wise, I guess that’s up to _ I mean, 200 years from now, who cares?

“But in the short term, I guess, he may have some things to address,” Berkman said. “He’s a big boy. He’ll face up to whatever it is. But it doesn’t change my opinion of him at all.”

Yankees catcher Jorge Posada, who played with Clemens on two World Series championship teams, said he would back his former teammate.

“I’m going to support him and I’m going to be behind him and that’s all I can say,” Posada said.

MLB did not comment on the indictment. But many in the game saw it as further validation of the Mitchell Report, released in December 2007.

Clemens was singled out by name 82 times in the 409-page report, compiled by former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell. Much of the information on Clemens came from McNamee.

Former MVP Jose Canseco, who has admitted his own steroid use and accused others, was the most-mentioned player in the Mitchell Report with 105 references.

“I am saddened to hear of the indictment of my friend and former teammate, Roger Clemens,” Canseco said in a statement through his attorney. “I am not aware of any use of steroids by Roger.”

Four days after the report was released, Clemens issued a categorical denial in a statement through his agent.

“I am disappointed that my 25 years in public life have apparently not earned me the benefit of the doubt, but I understand that Senator Mitchell’s report has raised many serious questions. I plan to publicly answer all of those questions at the appropriate time in the appropriate way. I only ask that in the meantime people not rush to judgment,” Clemens said.

Clemens and McNamee testified under oath at the 2008 hearing before a House committee and contradicted each other about whether the pitcher had used PEDs.

McNamee has said he injected Clemens more than a dozen times with steroids and HGH from 1998 to 2001. Clemens says McNamee was lying.

“As far as we’re concerned, it’s vindication,” Earl Ward, one of McNamee’s attorneys, said of the indictment.

Clemens‘ case was assigned to U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton, who presided over the perjury and obstruction trial of Vice President Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby. No date was set for Clemens‘ initial court appearance.

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