December 19, 2004

Who To Believe?

Peter Gammons, ESPN, 12/18: "His agent, Fern Cuza, knew for a month that the third year was there and that he could get whatever he wanted from the Mets. So he finally drove it to something/anything above Schilling, then took it to the Mets knowing they'd give Martinez whatever he wanted. They spun a nice myth about the Cardinals and Red Sox rushing back with four years to make the Mets look good, but it was fiction."

Murray Chass, New York Times, 12/19: "If the Mets are being criticized for giving Pedro Martinez $53 million for four years, the critics should know that the Mets weren't the only team in that neighborhood. St. Louis offered him $50 million for four years. And as Martinez was on the verge of accepting the Mets' offer, with the club's four-man contingent in his agent's hotel room at the winter meetings in Anaheim, Calif., Larry Lucchino, the Red Sox' chief executive, called several times and asked the agent, Fernando Cuza, 'What do we have to do to get back in?'"

Gotta go with Old Hickory on this one; Chass has become an absolute hack in the last two years. ... And apparently, when asked on WFAN last Thursday, Pedro admitted that Boston never offered a fourth year.

There is a fair amount of pop psychology being tossed around in this SoSH thread, including this from Montana Fan: "IMO Pedro is lashing out because he wanted to stay here. He wanted to stay more than the Sox ownership wanted him to stay. He'd be a fool to pass up an extra 13 million which is why he is now a Met. His comments indicated a clear desire to stay part of a team for which he liked playing. He likes his teammates, the fans and winning in Boston. He's PO'd because the Sox didn't value him as much as he valued being on the team."

That sounds about right. I wouldn't be surprised if he felt that accepting Boston's lesser offer after all the public wrangling (dating back a year) would be seen as giving in. It's a shame he couldn't be that humble.

In that same thread, Mr Weebles wrote: "Unfortunately I think Pedro made a mistake many people make in trying to justify his actions by placing blame on others. Personally, I would respect him more right now if he said 'look, no one was going to match the Mets offer of 4 years, 50 million plus. And at this stage of my career I appreciate the job security and the financial reward it brings.'"

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