So what do we, the public, want? Do we want guys to go quietly, tacitly admitting guilt, like Big Mac? Do we want gentle admissions with justifications (ie: "trying to return from injury")? Do we want them to give the public a big, fat F-bomb? Or do we want them kicking and screaming that they are indeed innocent, even going so far as filing defamation lawsuits? If you were a PR flack, what would YOU advise your client to do?
Here's another random thought on Clemens: if he were a beloved figure, maybe the public would be more sympathetic. But Clemens is not beloved. He's viewed as a mercenary. If this were Ripken or Gwynn or Molitor or Jeter, there might be a great sense of empathy. But for Clemens, as a mercenary, he was never beloved. He was cheered by the fans of the team he played for but I honestly don't think most fans took him into their hearts the way they do for "their guys".
If we were wrongly accused of doing something serious at work (pick your transgression), how would you act if you were indeed innocent? I'd like to believe I'd react like Clemens, launching a full assault to protect my name and reputation. And so why can't we believe Clemens is innocent? Because he defied nature? So did Nolan Ryan, right? Who's to say Ryan was clean. He retired in 1993, during the early stages of the "Steroid Era". Want something scary: Ryan and Jose Canseco were teammates in 1992-3. Not accusing, just saying
So how can any player, if accused, sway the court of public opinion? I have no idea. But I do know this, I'd want that player to react more like Clemens than McGwire. I can't ask more of Clemens than all he's doing. If he's actually lying, I'm not sure if I am more impressed with his bluster or more offended for being so blatantly lied to.
And just for fun: You want the truth? You can't handle the truth!