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McGwire on steroid admission: 'Let's all move on'

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'Steroids are bad'
  • "I wish I could have done this five years ago," he tells reporters after Cardinals event
  • Mark McGwire admitted last week he used steroids during record-setting '98 season
  • McGwire says he doesn't remember the names of the drugs he used
  • He said he preferred the oral drugs over injections

(CNN) -- Former St. Louis Cardinals slugger Mark McGwire said Sunday he's glad he admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs, but faced ongoing questions about why and which drugs he took.

"I wish I could have done this five years ago," he told reporters after a Cardinals fan event in St. Louis, Missouri, on Sunday. "We wouldn't be having this press conference right now. I feel a lot better about it inside."

McGwire admitted last week that he used steroids during his 1998 season, when he broke Major League Baseball's single-season home run record. He said he turned to steroids after being plagued by injuries in the early 1990s. It's an admission that came after years of allegations and a refusal to discuss the matter before a congressional committee in 2005.

"I've made a huge mistake in my life, and it's something I want you guys to learn from -- that one, they're illegal, and they're bad for you, and don't ever, ever go down that road," McGwire told fans at Sunday's event, his first appearance in his new position as the Cardinals' batting coach.

McGwire hit 70 home runs in 1998, smashing the previous record of 61 that Roger Maris set in 1961 with the New York Yankees. But in an interview last week with broadcaster Bob Costas, he said he only took steroids for health reasons and could have hit the same number of homers without performance-enhancing drugs.

He said he doesn't remember the names of the drugs he used, but said he preferred oral drugs over injections and admitted to trying human-growth hormone "once or twice."

But reporters quizzed him Sunday about his former teammate, Jose Canseco, who first published allegations that he and McGwire used steroids in a 2005 book and says McGwire hasn't fully come clean.

McGwire said he would "take the high road" when it came to accusations from Canseco, with whom he led the Oakland A's to a 1989 World Series title. Asked why he took steroids, McGwire would say only, "Everybody makes mistakes in their lives, and it's the biggest regret of my life."

"I spoke from my heart, and I spoke honestly," he said. "We all can accept this, and let's all move on from this. Baseball is better. Let's just all move on."