Jeff Pearlman’s “The Rocket That Fell To Earth” isn’t officially available until March 24, but the New York Times’ Michael S. Schmidt and Joshua Robinson — presumably scouring the racks at the Strand — have uncovered one rather sensational passage.

The book said that when Jason Giambi went through a slump in the 2002 season, his first with the Yankees, (General Manager) Brian Cashman was heard yelling at a television in the Yankees™ clubhouse during a game. Citing œone New York player, the book said that Cashman screamed, œJason, whatever you were taking in Oakland, get back on it.

The book said that Cashman then added, œPlease!

In a telephone interview Thursday night, Cashman said that the anecdote described in the book never happened.

œThat is completely false, Cashman said.

He added, in reference to the author: œThis guy never even called me and asked me if it was true. You think he would have done some fact-checking.

Cashman said that even when he gets upset, œI don™t yell.

In a telephone interview on Thursday night, Pearlman stood behind his account.

œThe source was a Yankee player who was an eyewitness and in whom I have 100 percent confidence, Pearlman said.

But he acknowledged that he should have called Cashman for his reaction. œHe™s totally right, Pearlman said. œI didn™t call him for comment and I should have.

œBut that doesn™t mean the story isn™t correct.

If Cashman didn’t say it, there were at least 50,000 people in Yankee Stadium most nights thinking it.  On an unrelated note, Mike Francesca recited the above story earlier today on WFAN after denouncing Pearlman’s tome as “a quickly put together book.”   “Just what we need,” snorted the “Mike’d Up” host, “another book about Roger Clemens and steroids.”

Francesca quickly corrected himself, perhaps realizing he’d struggle to name even one other book about Roger Clemens and steroids.