It didn’t take long for legal proceedings between Albert Pujols and Jack Clark to get ugly, as an attorney representing Clark accused Pujols of using a false name and challenged the Angels slugger to tale a polygraph test to determine if Pujols is telling the truth when he claims he never used performance-enhancing drugs.
Pujols’ attorney deemed the request for a polygraph “ridiculous” and, in an email, said it was “an absurd publicity ploy by a lawyer known for his hyperbole.”
Pujols filed a defamation suit in Missouri on Oct. 4 over Clark’s early August accusation on a radio show that Pujols used PEDs. The suit accuses Clark, the former St. Louis Cardinals star, of disseminating “malicious, reckless and outrageous falsehoods” about Pujols.
Clark based his accusation on conversations he claimed he had with Chris Mihlfeld, Pujols’ former personal trainer who worked with the Dodgers when Clark was the team’s hitting coach in 2000. Both Pujols and Mihlfeld have adamantly denied the charge.
In a five-page letter sent from Albert S. Watkins, one of Clark’s St. Louis-based attorneys, to Martin D. Singer, Pujols’ Los Angeles-based attorney, on Monday, Watkins refers to Pujols as “Jose Alberto Pujols Alcantara,” without offering any evidence to support the claim Pujols has been using an alias.
Watkins proposed that both Pujols and Clark submit to polygraph tests, the results of which would be made public.
If Clark is found to be deceptive and Pujols truthful, Clark “will climb to the highest mountain in a loin cloth (read: issue a public statement) fully retracting all objectionable statements, apologizing to the world and promising to never cast Mr. Alcantara in any disparaging light to dispose of the case,” Watkins writes.
If Pujols is found to be deceptive and Clark truthful, “your underlying petition will be dismissed, with prejudice, and your client will issue a public statement apologizing to Clark,” Watkins writes.
And if both Pujols and Clark are found to be deceptive, “your petition gets dismissed, again with prejudice, and neither party apologizes to the other,” Watkins writes.
Singer did not address the charge of a false name in his statement, but he did say Pujols had no intention of submitting to a polygraph test.
“Albert Pujols will testify in this case under oath, under penalty of perjury,” Singer said. “Third-party witnesses have also come forward to testify under oath confirming that Jack Clark’s statements about my client are false.
“What matters in court is sworn testimony. There is a reason that polygraph exams are inadmissible in civil and criminal cases .... This defamation suit was not filed so that Jack Clark and his lawyer can try to turn a very serious legal claim into a media circus.”