85 of 95 people found the following review helpful
on March 31, 2008
I happened to be at Barnes and Noble the day it came out and I just finished reading it during a 5 and 1/2 hour train ride to Boston. As the first to review this, I will be careful to write a fair and honest review.
I read Juiced and eventually began to believe Canseco only recently. As the title and one chapter suggests he is vindicated and what he says is now taken very seriously.
Because of the Mitchell report and live congressional investigation with McNamee and Clemens, I think this book was rushed to press and it includes information from events that are only a few weeks old at the time of publication. It is not a long book but of course it is absorbing and hard to put down. Canseco starts out reviewing the events that took place around the time Juiced came out. The most interesting part of the book is what he says about Roger Clemens and Alex Rodiguez. Much of this came out in the media before the book hit the presses and will undoubtably make it another best seller
On Clemens and the Mitchell report Canseco thinks things are not as they appear. He feels that the Mitchell report although good for describing the severity of the problem and naming some names missed quite a bit and was biased in favor of the Red Sox. Also the story by McNamee that Clemens was at Canseco's party Jose asserts is false Interestingly he tells us in this book that he originally named Clemens in Juiced and in his 60 minutes interview but Clemens name was the only one removed from the book and cut from the interview. Canseco speculates about it.
Also Canseco had no direct proof with regard to Clemens and after meeting with Clemens and his attorney recently he actually was persuaded to sign a petition saying that he did not think Clemens took steroids. But at the time of the publication he actually is unsure what to believe.
Regarding Alex Rodriguez, Canseco talks about this near the end of the book. He had direct knowledge related to ARod's possible steriod use at the time of the publication of Juiced but he left ARod out because he felt that his strong distaste for the man would have led the readers and reviewers to disbelieve him because of this. In Vindicated Canseco talks about their personal connection and how ARod trained at Canseco's house, learned about steroids from Jose who also hooked him up with a trainer. Canseco says that ARod flirted with Canseco's wife when he visited and in Canseco's mind ARod wanted to have an affair with her.
This time he is better prepared for the critics. He is very prideful of his complete truthfulness in these books and with regard to every statement that could be challenged he took lie detector tests from two very reputable testers and passed with flying colors!
Canseco definitely is in it for the money whether he admits it or not and his speculation about Clemens and Rodriguez is in there to sell copies more than anything else. So take his waffling about Clemens and his accusations toward ARod with a grain of salt. I am sure that Rodriguez flirted with Canseco's wife and he may have even been looking for a sexual affair but that could be just part of Jose's wild imagination also. At least he admits when he is speculating and tells you when he has hard facts. ARod surely asked Canseco about steroids. He also must have been introduced to a supplier and he may have used steroids. But whether he went through with it and actually took the drugs is still speculation and Rodriguez has not failed a drug test yet.
As I revise this review in July 2010 information has come to light indicating that Clemens was heavily involved and lied to congress also ARod's confession and media manipulation further vindicates Canseco. I would not question Conseco's words again. I think he has been totally truthful.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on April 3, 2008
Jose Canseco has said himself that he wrote this book and Juiced to exact revenge against MLB for blackballing him. His reasoning was that because he was the guy to bring steroids into the game, players improved by leaps and bounds and that caused the salary structure to explode over the years. Is that true? I don't know but I wouldn't be surprised to find out that it was. In my OPINION, I think Jose is upset that his own body betrayed him...fell apart...and he was forced from the game. At one time, Jose was the talk of the town. HE was going to hit 62 home runs in a season. HE was going to hit 756 for his career. And now...with a career that included more trips on the DL than to the All Star game, and finishing with 462 home runs,he was removed from the Hall of Fame ballot after the 2007 voting and his career has been reduced to a footnote. He's watched from the sidelines as Mark McGwire & Sammy Sosa broke records and were cheered and it ate at him (something he alluded to in Juiced).So now he decided to do something about this. Again, my OPINION is that he felt "if I can't have the addoration of the fans anymore,neither can they"
I don't think he wrote this book as a cash grab. He made $50 million dollars in his career. I also don't think he wrote this to "save" the game. If Jose was able to play out his career as he wanted, was able to be elected to the Hall of Fame and was able to feel vindicated by his playing, he wouldn't have written these books.
But I will say this. Shortly after Juiced came out, his former teammate Dave Stewart had said "You can call Jose a lot of things...but you can never call him a liar" and I think he proved that. I also believe that a lot of what he wrote in this book will prove true in the long run.
But as far as his motives go...they're suspect at best. This book is for him and nobody else. Not MLB, not the players union or the players themselves. But for Jose Canseco and his bruised ego.
24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on April 3, 2008
When I watch Jose Canseco give interviews, I don't like the guy. He strikes me as slimy and manipulative in almost all of his statements. But you know what? None of that matters. When "Juiced" came out, I heard and read everyone panning the guy (including myself) as someone who just wanted to make a buck. Slowly, he became the only one in the whole ordeal telling the truth. Palmeiro went from a strong a trustworthy guy to the biggest bold-faced liar in all of baseball. McGwire and Sosa went from lovable first-ballot Hall of Famers to jokes overnight. Canseco came out looking great, despite all of the doubt that first circled around him.
Therefore, when this new book came out, I wanted to read it right away. I still don't like the guy, but I don't doubt that every word in here is also true and will eventually be proven as such. I don't necessarily agree with his motives on some things, but his first-hand knowledge has been credible so far, and having transcripts of polygraph tests in there seal the deal for me.
I don't know how MLB will respond to the information in this book, but flat denials from accused players shouldn't be enough for the public anymore. Jose calls himself "The Godfather of Steroids" in the book, and like him or not, I agree with all of his assessments. The book is a good and fast read, and if you like the game of baseball at all, you'll get a lot out of it.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on February 6, 2009
If you like Conseco's first book about "Roids" that was exciting and all about the inner circles of baseball, be ready that this is not more of the same. In "Vindicated", there is much more direct finger pointing and name calling than anything else. It is like the author is screaming for people to believe him. We do, Jose, you passed 2 polygraphs with absolutely "no chance of being disceptive." This book was written in a hurry, as there is no index, and the stories are not nearly as good as in his first. But the details are much better. There are several more memorial facts that one could find quite disturbing. The fact that HarperCollins(publisher of his first book) made Conseco remove the name of Roger Clemens from that text or they would refuse to print it, is quite curious. It appears that naming good ole Roger in any bad light, is not good for this world. And I like Roger Clemens!! I did enjoy those reenactments of Sosa suddenly forgetting English before Congress, and McGwire not wanting to mention the past, totally hiliarious. Jose also has issue with A-Rod and terms him "Stray Rod" for reasons you should read about. The photos of the players being buffed up, is not completely atune with the fact of steroid use, but later you learn they all, including Clemens, A-Rod, Sosa, and mosty all Yankees (except D. Jeter) do use them. For some odd reason, most Boston Red Sox players are not even mentioned?? Even the great holier than thou Andy Petitt seems to have been punched by the needle a few times. The biggest hypocrite of them all has to be the $18million -a- year commissioner Bud Selig and his court. While they pretend to dispise the use of Growth Hormone and steroids, they surely knew its presence was throughout all aspects of the game. Yet because these big home run hitters were exciting and brought in the fans, they willfully accepted gate money for the sport of it. Something like selling your soul. Selig is seemingly very good at the exploitation of sports' individuals while remaining totally innocent of any incriminating facts of his own. He is the commissioner and did not know this was going on... Please..he owns his own team.. You will not be able to put this down, because Conseco does not hold anything back, and is relentless to get you to understand how he was railroaded into making the title of enemy #1 on baseball's bad boy list. guyairey
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
In 2005 Jose Canseco wrote "Juiced" in which he "outed" the baseball steroid scandal for what it was. Canseco was derided for doing a money-grabbing job, but a funny thing happened along the way: it opened the floodgates, including congressional hearings and a supposedly stricter baseball policy on steroids. Now comes the sequel, in which Canseco muses on what has happened since his first book came out.
in "Vindicated: Big Names, Big Liars, and the Battle to Save Baseball" (259 pages), Canseco goes on in his "hold no prisoner" way on what he feels is right and wrong with how the baseball steroid scandal has unfolded since his first book. Canseco looks back at the indignation of the baseball world when "Juiced" came out, only to be proved "right" of course. He has choice words for the likes of Rafael Palmero: "Palmeiro knew he was a steroids user, and he knew I knew. [...] Now here we were, only months after the hearings, and Rafi tests positive. Who's lying exactly?" On the Mitchell Report: "Senator Mitchell claimed he had personally all the players connected to the scandal. Maybe he called a lot of players, and maybe, for all I know, he called every single one of them. But he never called me."
On the "outing" of Magglio Ordenez and A-Rod, Canseco sounds pretty vindictive, but then again, he tells it how he sees it and it's difficult to argue with him. only time will tell if Canseco is right on these calls, but with his track record, I wouldn't bet against Canseco. Is Canseco self-serving in this book? of course he is. Is this another "money-grabbing" job? likely. But the facts have been with Canseco and this book doesn't diminish from that fact. (As a total aside, I read in today's newspaper that Canseco's house is being foreclosed on...)
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 8, 2009
Jose Conseco might have even preferred that title. He doesn't miss an opportunity to tell you & everybody that called him a liar & fast buck artist. This is the follow-up to his wildly sucessful "Juiced: Wild Times, Rampant Roids". I read the hard-cover version. Got it cheap, used thru Amazon. Anyway give me a vote or a comment. If you're the first that wants it & will read it, I'll mail it to you ppd. No strings, promise. I'll need your snail mail by November 9th.
The book is heavy padded to make it repectable size. Lots of stats of other players, pages from the Mitchell Report, his testimony & lie detector tests he took. There are also really good color photos of McGwire, Sosa, A-Rod etc. Before & after shots speak for themselves. Conseco is bitter & he throws a few more players under the steroids track, A-Rod, Ivan Rodriquez & Roger Clemens. That latter he has no proof of. He spends alot of time on Clemens, a so-called good friend & teammate for a short period of time. Conseco was on a lot of teams in his career & was always the man to go to for info on steroids. He's seen a lot of butts & injected them multiple times. He makes no bones about his own use, right from the beginning of his career. Conseco is not a good writer by any streach of the imagination. He's intelligent & might be fun to hang out with, for a short period of time. But emtionally he's a loose cannon & has betrayed lots of friends & teammates for $$$. Not very commendable. The book is an easy read & entertaining for the short time it will take.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on May 6, 2009
Vindicated, Jose Canseco's 2nd baseball-steriod book is just validating everything that he has already said, or been saying, and then some.
Vindicated starts with Canseco talking about the media's interpretation of him when he first came out with Juiced. Even before the book hit the shelves, a transcript of the book was leaked, and the media, inparticular, baseball went on damage control, critizing Canseco and calling him a money grubbing person who had zero to no credibilty. Some outlets even compared him to Monica Lewisnky, someone only seeking attention, but Canseco points out that he wasn't aware that Monica was a liar.
He goes into how Roger Clemens name ended up not being in Juiced, or in several interviews that he did, including one with ESPN's Pedro Gomez, and above all, Canseco spoke about why he wrote JUICED and why he came out with his 2nd book, VINDICATED.
Canseco sets up his story beautifully, explaining in detail encounters he had with Barry Bonds, and how 3 months later, Barry had added almost 30 lbs of muscle and the shape of his head had grown. Canseco delves into how and why MLB knew but did nothing, and how his anger at how the media chose to not believe him, or lend any credibility to him citing money issues among things, when all along, Canseco always maintained that he was telling the truth.
The media judged on his character and never lent any truth to his story, like when Tony LaRussa backed McGwire yet said that Canseco was juicing.
Canseco touches on the Mitchell Report, and how he felt he had been "Mitch-slapped" by the committee. He noticed how some people that he personally knew injected, or that he had injected himself were not mentioned in the Mitchell Report, like Pudge Rodriguez for example.
Canseco was also upset that there were more New York Yankees in the book, both current and retired when compared to Boston, and probably the most interesting note of all, is that not one single Florida Marlin was mentioned in the report. Canseco makes note of course that Mr. Mitchell used to be on the board of directors for the Florida Marlins...draw your own conclusions.
Canseco says that he was going to, but didn't include ex-White Sox/current Tiger Magglio Ordonez because he felt sorry for him. He sided with him and showed him steriods and even injected him a couple of times. Canseco included Magglio because when stories started floating around that Canseco tried to black-mail "Maggs" into a deal to sponsor a documentary that Canseco wanted to do, and when Maggs didn't deny these rumors or acknowledge that he hadn't spoke to Canseco nor contacted him, Canseco talked.
So Canseco says at first he didn't include Maggs because he liked him, and yet when Maggs didn't stand up to the blackmail rumors or call him back, Canseco burned him?
Can you blame him? No. But people who are disgusted with Canseco will point out that to them, Canseco did this as a revenge factor more than anything.
Canseco doesn't condone steriod use, yet speaks about the pros of taking steriods and how in fact, it helped baseball revive itself after the 1994 Strike by putting butts in the seats with the long-ball, which it did.
In JUICED for example, Canseco says he doesn't promote steriods, yet gave a whole chapter on the goods of taking steriods the right way and how it could in fact, help people and not hurt them. They would feel stronger and live longer IF taken the right way.
-on the subject of A-Rod, Canseco again comes off as being a bitter person who wanted to get back at A-Rod, which is why people didn't believe him in the first place. Canseco says he included A-Rod because he doesn't like fake people, and A-Rod tried stealing his wife. What i also found pretty amazing about the book is that Canseco pointed out how A-Rod (pre Selina Roberts-public knowledge) was already in love with himself. He points to the fact that A-Rod wanted to be like Canseco (homerun hitter, good looking Latino guy, both dated Madonna like Canseco apparently did, both were 40/40 guys, and both at one time were the highest paid players in the league).
The most interesting point made was that when Alex signed his legendary $252 million dollar deal, it was exactly TWICE the size of the then highest sports salary ever....................$126 million by Kevin Garnett with Boston.
Canseco points out that this was a calculated move by A-Rod to say, "look at me world, i'm twice as good as anyone here". To this day, A-Rod still has the highest player salary in all of sports.
Canseco adds transcripts from more than 3 lie detector tests he took and how he passed all with absouletly zero to no points of deception on everything from A-Rod to Magglio.
Canseco finally, and convincingly added before and after pictures of all the suspected steriod users, Bonds, Sosa, Tejada, McGwire, A-Rod, and Clemens, to name a few along with their stats.
Regardless of what you think of Jose, one thing has proved simple....HE IS NOT A LIAR.
yes, he can come off as arogant, cocky, self absorbed, jealous, outrages and sometimes seem to appear like a liar, but he isn't. All the guys he named in JUICE, were juicing, and reading the book now, after the A-Rod and Manny Ramirez fall out, it almost glorifies the title of his book.
Don't be surprised to see another Canseco book that reads "How do you like them apples", because all along, through all the media mudslinging, he was right.
I recommend Vindicated to any baseball purist, not for the gossip, but rather in hopes that baseball can be cleaned up once and for all.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 8, 2010
This book is a follow-up to Juiced, and although I liked Juiced better, this book was impossible to put down, as well. It is written in a really relaxed conversational style; it reads more like an interview. I picked it up at B&N and read it in one sitting.
Some of the narrative is off-topic (like the martial arts stuff and the Hollywood stuff) but overall it was really interesting. I am giving the book only 4 stars because, although I enjoyed it and could not put it down, the long "interview" really should have been cleaned up and edited a little more. As some of the other interviewers have noted, a lot of stuff was just filler, but most of it was still interesting, nonetheless.
And he adds transcripts of his lie-detector tests. Say what you want about him-- I didn't see any of the other players submit to a lie detector.
Canseco might be full of pomp and swagger, but he's not full of crap.
Oh, and I don't like spoiler reviews, but this book is worth buying, just to read what Canseco says about A-Rod!!!
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Fine, he was right the first time.
A lot of us scoffed when Juiced: Wild Times, Rampant 'Roids, Smash Hits, and How Baseball Got Big came out. After all, so many of the little details (the baseball anecdotes) were flat-out wrong... who could honestly expect us to believe all of the big details (Jose's allegations about who he helped 'roid up?).
Then came the infamous 2005 Congressional hearings, and Rafael Palmeiro's tainted B12 shot, and the publication of Game of Shadows: Barry Bonds, BALCO, and the Steroids Scandal that Rocked Professional Sports. Now, come to find out, Jose really was telling us the truth!
That's where "Vindicated" comes in. This is a slim volume, with big print and wide margins, in which Jose repeatedly tells us how truthful he is. I'm going to allow him his victory lap. If I can help him pay down his debts and keep him stocked in power bars and hair gel, and buy his daughter horseback-riding lessons, fine, I'm in. That's my punishment for lightly mocking "Juiced".
I won't say this is an artful book. "Juiced" had its problems but it had a competent ghostwriter, the same guy who gave us One Day at Fenway: A Day in the Life of Baseball in America and What a Party!: My Life Among Democrats: Presidents, Candidates, Donors, Activists, Alligators, and Other Wild Animals. "Vindicated", on the other hand, is written by the same titan of the typewriter (master wizard of MS Word?) who gave us If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer. Many details are repeated over and over again: in barely 200 pages I caught four repetitions of the story of Jose's pledge to his dying mother. How can so small a book have so much duplication?
The stuff about the lie detector tests is kind of over-the-top. To make a long story short, such testing is largely inadmissible in a court of law. Also Jose describes verbatim pre- and post-test banter with the test administrators which leads us to wonder if those two ex-law enforcement guys weren't just playing along with an elaborate gag.
Also, while Jose uses the scope of the entire book to waver back and forth between saying that Roger Clemens 'roided up, and then going so far as to sign an affidavit for the Rocket's lawyers saying that he knows nothing... he tells us that he knows for a fact that Clemens wasn't at the infamous 1998 Canseco family pool party, and yet wire reports say that a picture actually exists of Clemens at that party. The jury's still out on that one, for me at least.
Still, allow the man his indulgence. Also, a late chapter about why Jose loves baseball is actually kind of touching. Considering how little affection Jose showed for baseball in his earlier volume, this chapter actually gives him the slightest hint of something he's never shown us before: humility.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 19, 2009
I feel like despite people believing Canseco is a credible steroid source, most people still hate him for some reason, and thus, this book has 3-stars on amazon. Pretty absurd if you ask me.
Vindicated is just as entertaining as Juiced was, and sheds even MORE light on the steroids issue in Baseball. It's a perfect Part 2, to Juiced. Once again, Canseco was right, with Clemens and A-Rod being named in this book.
This book made me laugh out loud several times, made me get charged up with excitement, made me get angry.... it was an emotional rollercoaster. Craftfully written, and very, very entertaining. I'd recommend this book to ANY Major League Baseball fan. If you hate Canseco, whatever, but don't rate this book low because of it. The book is fantastic.