January 12, 2012

Pedro Talks About Verlander's MVP, Steroids, And His Ties To Boston

Pedro Martinez was on WEEI on Tuesday, discussing various aspects of his career and his sterling seasons with the Red Sox.

Martinez says he was tempted to use steroids when he was with the Dodgers, trying to get to and establish himself in the major leagues. However Pedro declined the drugs not because it was cheating, but because he was told that "there are certain areas of a man that will get damaged". Once Martinez made it to the bigs,
I was never interested. I was so willing to prove to everybody that I could do it. ... I wanted to prove everybody so wrong. I finally did it. I'm thankful for not ever taking anything illegal.
Talking about not winning the MVP in either 1999 or 2000 and the fact that Justin Verlander won the AL MVP in 2011, Martinez hints that racism was involved and singles out two BBWAA writers - George King and LaVelle Neal III - who actually left Martinez completely off their 1999 MVP ballots. (King explained that he felt pitchers should not be eligible for the MVP, even though he voted for two pitchers, David Wells and Rick "4.41 ERA" Helling, the year before. No one else listed Helling on a ballot.)
I was kind of pissed off at first [when Verlander won], but then I went to realize that [the voters] are going to have to live with that label on their back. If anyone calls them prejudiced or racist for not voting for me, everyone will have to understand that it's their responsibility for not voting for me at that time. I feel kind of bad, but at the same time, I was really happy that the pitchers who really deserved it like Justin finally got the monkey off their backs ... Now, after, what, 11 years [since 1999], I see that they finally voted for another pitcher. Guess what: That pitcher is American. I was a Dominican-born player. That made me feel kind of awkward about it. If you compare my numbers to Justin's, not taking anything from what he did, my numbers were way better.
Pedro also talks about his 17-strikeout, one-hitter against the Yankees in 1999 (New York hit only eight fair balls that night), his relief effort against Cleveland that October, and (yes) Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS.
I'm a Bostonian. I consider myself a Bostonian. I believe my best years, my most important years, were in Boston. Part of my heart is in Boston. The other part is with my family and my own interests. I don't have anything bad to say about my years in Boston. Honestly speaking, which is not very often that you'll have an All-Star speaking honestly, I love Boston. I miss Boston. I miss the fans. I love the fans. I loved living in Boston. I'm actually thinking about selling my house in New York and buying back in Boston to actually go back.


allan said...

WEEI Interview with Theo Epstein

FenFan said...

We miss you, too, Pedey! :-)

laura k said...

We miss you, too, Petey!

I know FenFan said it but I had to say it, too. :)

johngoldfine said...

Nice contrast to Ted F. Williams' quoted remarks about where his heart was....

Amy said...

Yay, Pedro! Come back to Boston!