Two Former Mets Are Still Making Headlines

March 4, 2009

For those of you who haven’t noticed, former Mets pitcher Pedro Martinez is claiming he is healthy again. He will be showcasing his talents at this year’s World Baseball Classic as a member of the Dominican Republic.

“The last few years, I’ll be the first to tell you, I haven’t been the Pedro Martinez I’m used to being,” he said.

The Mets organization can attest to that statement all too well. Aside from his first season with the club in 2005, Martinez was mostly seen warming up for scheduled bullpen sessions than for actual games throughout the next three seasons. That’s because he tore a muscle in his left calf and developed a torn rotator cuff which sidelined him for most of the 2007 season. On September 3rd, he made his return to the team in which he started fives games. He finished the season with a 3-1 record and a 2.57 ERA. However, in 2008, he was bit by the injury bug again. He managed to string together 20 starts. In 109 innings pitched, he struck out 87 batters and finished the season with a record of 5 wins and 6 losses. His 5.61 ERA that year was the highest mark of his career.

By participating in the Classic, the three-time Cy Young award-winner is hoping to land a spot on any ballclub that is in need of his services.

“I’d love to play for all of them,” he said. “I’m open to play for anybody that would give me respect. … If nobody takes a chance, I’ll go fishing.”

Martinez has always had a way with words. When asked about the Red Sox-Yankee rivalry, he responded: “I’m starting to hate talking about the Yankees. The questions are so stupid. They’re wasting my time. It’s getting kind of old … I don’t believe in damn curses. Wake up the damn Bambino and have me face him. Maybe I’ll drill him in the ass, pardon me the word.”

My feeling is that we haven’t seen the last of the real Pedro.

Strawberry Throws His Two-Cents In

“If a guy can fall and he can get up and dust himself off and help somebody else, then he has really done what he was called to do,” said Darryl Strawberry, the former Mets and Yankees slugger, who now works as an analyst with SNY.

Strawberry could have been speaking about his own troubled past in the third person with this statement but he wasn’t. His words of wisdom were in response to the public apology made by Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez who confessed to his use of performance-enhancing drugs. “You can’t take from what he’s done. Hopefully, he can be forgiven,” Strawberry said.

Strawberry, who is a prominent member of the 30 homers and 30 stolen bases club, had what critics call “natural talent.” When Strawberry was asked if he would experiment with steroids as a young player if they came his way, he bluntly stated, “Hell yeah, I would use them. Are you kidding me?” “I probably would have been a part of it,” he added.

Strawberry has had plenty of experience with banned substances. From the mid-nineteen nineties to 2002, he had been in and out of rehab because of cocaine abuse. “I was stupid, too. I did a lot of stupid things.”

His memoir, “Straw: Finding My Way,” is scheduled for its released on April 28, 2009.

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