Our Mitchell plan

George Mitchell unveils his long-awaited report on performance-enhancing drugs in baseball today at 2 p.m., and we’ll bring you live updates from his press conference, as well as commissioner Bud Selig’s media session at 4:30 p.m.

We’ll also summarize any details of the report as they become evident, list any key names that are revealed (according to some reports, as many as 80 former and current players could be included), as well as provide a link to the entire report when it is available (it’s thought to be more than 300 pages).

Today’s key events

  • 2 p.m.: George Mitchell’s press conference
  • 4:30 p.m.: Commissioner Bud Selig’s press conference
  • 6 p.m.: MLB Players’ Association head Donald Fehr press conference

    Details to watch for
    (pulled from reports in the Boston Globe, New York Times, Washington Post, and on ESPN.com)

  • Mitchell’s report on performance-enhancing drugs in baseball will be highly critical of the commissioner’s office and the players’ union for tolerating the presence of drugs throughout years of abuse, a person who has read the closely guarded report told the New York Times.
  • The Associated Press, citing two sources with knowledge of the report, said it reveals a “serious drug culture within baseball, from top to bottom” and is divided into two parts: one that will name players, including All-Stars and MVPs, who used illegal drugs, and one that will focus on suggestions for the future, including enhanced year-round testing.
  • According to ESPN.com and the AP, as many as 80 active and former major leaguers could be named in the report, which was reviewed by Major League Baseball earlier this week. Those could include Jeremy Giambi, Jose Canseco, and Paxton Crawford, former Red Sox who have admitted using performance-enhancing drugs.
  • The Washington Post, citing sources who had been briefed on the report but had not seen it, said it will show drug use is more prevalent among pitchers – including some Cy Young Award winners – than position players.
  • Whether there will be a Red Sox connection remains to be seen, and is itself a controversial aspect of the decision to have Mitchell head the investigation. Mitchell has been listed by the Sox as a director under the current ownership, a connection that has come under fire from some corners since he was asked to take on the project in March 2006.
  • According to ESPN, the report will recommend that MLB and the union agree to outsource their drug testing program to an independent agency.
  • Mitchell is frank in the report about how difficult it was to get information regarding the extent of player use, according to ESPN.com.
  • Mitchell will try to play down the names mentioned in an attempt to steer attention to the enormity of baseball’s drug problem and the need for changes, a source told the Washington Post.

    While you’re passing the time between now and 2 p.m., check out the Globe’s profile of Mitchell by Stan Grossfeld that was published in July.

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