March 16, 2004

"'Can you start the 8th?' I said, 'Okay. Just have the guys ready in case I stumble a little bit.' I was over my pitch limit already. ... Then all of a sudden, everybody kept coming up and it's up to me." Transcript of Pedro Martinez's ESPN Sunday Conversation with Peter Gammons:

Pedro: I'm very happy to see A-Rod on that team, not because he's A-Rod, but because he has a chance to win. And every athlete looks out for the other and we all want to win.

Gammons: Is it a help to you to have a guy like Schilling come in and at least - does that take some pressure off you?

Pedro: Yes, it does. Schilling gives me another sense of security, to actually say, "Hey, if I don't win today, we have the same chance tomorrow -- and the same chance tomorrow, and the same chance tomorrow," because right now, at this point, I feel like Wakefield is equally as effective as I might be; D-Lowe, you can never underestimate him; Schilling, you're talking about another Pedro Martinez; and my presense there will actually just give us all the security we need.

Gammons: Did you think you got treated unfairly in that Game 3 last, in the Yankees series?

Pedro: Very unfair. Very unfair. And I'm not expecting anybody to treat me like a lady or whatever. But I was having a bad day. I was struggling -- that wasn't a good time for me to do anything bad at that point. ... Karim Garcia. Who's Karim Garcia? I have no respect for that guy. I don't have anything to prove to that guy. He needs to be forcing himself to come up to where I am -- to my level. When you talk about Jeter, Bernie Williams, Paul O'Neill, guys like that that you really tip your hat, that you can understand, but guys like Karim Garcia -- What? So what? Who are you? Who are you Karim Garcia to try to test Pedro Martinez, a proven player for 10 years? That's what I don't understand. Why would I hit Karim Garcia?

And then Zimmer went out of his way to try to get to me. I'm coming out, I'm the last guy coming out, Zimmer steps way out of line, to try to skip everybody, to do I don't know what -- what would happen if Zimmer comes up to me, I'm on the edge of the dugout and he pushes me back and I break my neck? What will happen? I tried to hold him, I tried to protect him, because I understood. I was fully aware that it was Zimmer. I did not mean to hurt him. The man tried to punch me. So I stepped aside, did not throw a punch whatsoever. I let him go. He was falling, he was pulling my arm and thinking to pull me with him. So I let go. By no means do I want to hurt a guy that's my daddy's age.

Gammons: When you came off the mound at the end of the 7th inning, did you think that you were out of the game?

Pedro: I was actually told I wasn't going to go back out. Um --

Gammons: Who told you?

Pedro: Uh, actually Chris Correnti -- my therapist. He said "You're done." And so did Wallace -- Dave Wallace, he said "Well, I think you are done." So -- I wasn't really convinced that I was done, because the guys were warming up. Grady came up and said, "Can you start the 8th?" I said, "Okay. Just have the guys ready in case I stumble a little bit." I was over my pitch limit already. They had told me how many pitches, pretty much, I was going to throw in case I have to go to the World Series. And then all of a sudden, I got in trouble. And when Grady came out, the simple question was whether I could pitch to Matsui or not. And I said Yes. Of course I can pitch to one more, why not? Then all of a sudden, everybody kept coming up and it's up to me. Grady felt like that, I felt like I could get everybody out -- still. But it didn't work. It just didn't work.

According to another clip/transcript, this was what Pedro said after that last quote ended: "They just got to me and that's, that's it. I'm proud of it. I mean, I'm not gonna say I'm sorry because I lost the game or I lost the lead. I did whatever possible to win. I lost the lead, yes I did, I did not lose the game - it's okay, but we lost it - it's the same."

Tito's Predecessor to GQ: "Time after time after time this year, when this kid [Pedro] got into a jam in an inning where it's getting close to the end of his outing, he's the one we left in there to get out of the jam that inning. Then we'd take him out of the game. We'd done it through the year, over and over and over." ... Yeah, except the jam Pedro got himself out of, when getting close to the end of his outing, was in the 7th inning! Sh*thead.

Over at Royal Rooters, "Brooklyn Sox Fan" wrote: "People in New England will be sitting around a table 25 years from now and somebody will ask, 'Why did that idiot leave him in?' and everybody will understand exactly what that person is talking about."

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