But the country singer never said she was in love with the baseball star, her mother tells PEOPLE

By Eileen Finan
April 30, 2008 04:30 PM
Richard Carson/Reuters/Landov; John Russell/AP

Mindy McCready’s relationship with Roger Clemens was no secret to her family, says McCready’s mother, Melody Inge.

“They came by here one morning and we had breakfast together,” Inge, of Ft. Myers, Fla., told PEOPLE on Tuesday.

Inge characterized her daughter’s relationship with the baseball star, as “off and on.”

“She went to ball games and I know she went to Las Vegas with him,” says Inge, adding that Clemons also sent her daughter money in the past.

In a New York Daily News report, the country singer admitted to the relationship. “Yes, I have known Roger Clemens for a long time,” she said. “He’s a kind and caring man.”

The relationship reportedly began when Clemens met her at a Florida bar when she was 15 and he was a 28-year-old married father of two.

Inge says that while her daughter was close to Clemens, “I never heard her say she was in love with him.”

“I only knew her to be in love once and that was with (former fiancé) Dean Cain,” she says.

“I feel for Roger’s family at this time,” adds Inge. “They must be going through a terrible time. And there are a lot of positive things going on in Mindy’s life right now and she’s trying to get her life started again and she doesn’t need negative publicity like this. It doesn’t help.”