Former Major League slugger Jose Canseco on Thursday hit back at reports claiming he was recently banned from the Mexican Baseball League for using a banned substance.
Canseco, who famously revealed he used performance-enhancing drugs during his Major League career between 1985 and 2001, was attempting a comeback to the sport with the Quintana Roo Tigres, at age 47.
The former American League MVP appeared on camera Thursday, holding up what he said was a doctor-approved prescription for "testosterone therapy."
"I’m not in shock how people would lie about me. I’ve been lied about my whole life," Canseco told ESPN.
"I just want to play baseball. It’s real simple. I don’t want to use steroids. They put me on testosterone therapy because medically I need it. I can’t live without it. Believe me I don’t want to do it"
Mexican League president Plinio Escalante told ESPN Deportes Wednesday that Canseco was banned for using testosterone and that the slugger refused to take a drug test.
Canseco, who hit 462 home runs during his 17-year career in the majors, wrote a tell-all book in 2005 in which he claimed 85 percent of big-league players used banned substances.
The six-time All-Star told ESPN Thursday he received calls from friends telling him Major League Baseball was behind the latest claims against him.
"Some friends have called me and they told me, ‘Be careful. Major League Baseball is putting a lot of pressure on people.’ They’re trying to find any way to get me out of the game again even if they have to lie," Canseco said.
Canseco directed a tweet at his former skipper Tony La Russa Wednesday night, expressing regret for publishing his tell-all book that helped spark a crackdown on steroid use in baseball.
"@TonyLaRussa boy did I mess up writing that book tell big mac I am sorry," he wrote in reference to former teammate Mark McGwire, who he named as a steroid user in the book.