"We have approached these cases by looking at the period of time during which the conduct occurred and what our policy looked like for that point in time," said Rob Manfred, baseball's executive vice president for labor relations.
While the records will surely stand, several stars named in the report could pay the price in Cooperstown, much the way Mark McGwire was kept out of the Hall of Fame this year when his name first appeared on a ballot for enshirement.
Mitchell said the problems didn't develop overnight and there was plenty of blame to go around.
"Everyone involved in baseball over the past two decades -- commissioners, club officials, the players' association and players -- shares to some extent the responsibility for the Steroids Era," Mitchell said. "There was a collective failure to recognize the problem as it emerged and to deal with it early on."
Mitchell recommended that the drug-testing program be made independent, that a list of the substances players test positive for be listed periodically and that the timing of testing be more unpredictable.
Gagne, Giambi, Gary Sheffield, Troy Glaus, Gary Matthews Jr., Paul Byrd, Jose Guillen, Brian Roberts, Paul Lo Duca and Rick Ankiel were among other current players in the report. Some were linked to human growth hormone, others to steroids. Mitchell did not delve into stimulants.
"The illegal use of performance-enhancing substances poses a serious threat to the integrity of the game," the report said. "Widespread use by players of such substances unfairly disadvantages the honest athletes who refuse to use them and raises questions about the validity of baseball records."
A total of 22 Yankees, past and present, were identified. Players were linked to doping in various ways -- some were identified as users, some as buyers and some by media reports and other investigations.
Jose Canseco, whose 2005 book "Juice'' was cited throughout, was mentioned the most often -- 105 times. Bonds was next at 103. Canseco, who was in New York on Thursday, was denied entrance to Mitchell's news conference.
"According to McNamee, from the time that McNamee injected Clemens with Winstrol through the end of the 1998 season, Clemens' performance showed remarkable improvement," the report said. "During this period of improved performance, Clemens told McNamee that the steroids 'had a pretty good effect' on him."
It was not clear when in 1998 that McNamee claims he began giving Clemens injections, but after going 5-6 through the first two months of that season, Clemens was 15-0 with a 2.29 ERA in 22 starts from June through September.
McNamee also told investigators that "during the middle of the 2000 season, Clemens made it clear that he was ready to use steroids again. During the latter part of the regular season, McNamee injected Clemens in the buttocks four to six times with testosterone from a bottle labeled either Sustanon 250 or Deca-Durabolin."
"It is very unfair to include Roger's name in this report," said Clemens' lawyer, Rusty Hardin. "He is left with no meaningful way to combat what he strongly contends are totally false allegations. He has not been charged with anything, he will not be charged with anything and yet he is being tried in the court of public opinion with no recourse. That is totally wrong."