NEW YORK — Baseball investigator George Mitchell likely will issue his long-awaited report on steroids use in baseball by the end of the year, and there is a strong possibility he will identify individual players.

A lawyer for the firm representing Major League Baseball in the investigation updated representatives for the 30 teams during a conference call Friday and told them Mitchell's report likely would be issued in November or December, several baseball club officials said.

Asked by a club official whether the report would name individual players, Thomas Carlucci of Foley & Lardner told teams they should assume it would, several team officials who were briefed on the call's details said. Reached at his office, Carlucci declined comment.

Carlucci, a former assistant U.S. attorney in San Francisco, also told teams there was a good chance they would not receive copies of the report before it's made public. Carlucci's conference call first was reported by ESPN.

"There is only one group of people that knows when the report is going to be issued, whether it's going to contain names, how many names it's going to contain and what those names are, and that would be Senator Mitchell and the members of his firm," said Rob Manfred, baseball's executive vice president of labor relations.

Mitchell issued a statement that did not go into specifics.

"The investigation has not been completed, and no decisions have been made about any aspect of the report," he said.

The players' association has asked for Mitchell to provide any accusations he intends to include in his report and the evidence that backs up the charges so that players may have an opportunity to refute them, a person who represents players said. Lawyers for Mitchell have told the union that they are reluctant to do so, the person said.