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Archive for "Nov 17 2004"

RHP Seeks “Daddy”

No joke, Pedro runs to Daddy:

Pedro Martinez asked Daddy for money yesterday. The free agent righty had a surprise meeting with George Steinbrenner and his Tampa posse of executives at Legends Field.

Martinez, who has had a volatile rivalry with the Yankees as a member of the Red Sox, requested the meeting along with his agent, Fern Cuza, according to sources familiar with the meeting.

Perhaps strategically on Pedro’s part, it did not include anyone from the Yanks’ New York offices.

And so it begins. After the Red Sox put a two year, $27 million dollar deal on the table (with an optional $14 mill third year) Petey went down to Tampa and sought out Darth Boss George. But George has other things taking up his attention these days:

People close to the situation say he’s obsessed with getting Randy Johnson, and granted Pedro an audience yesterday only because the Red Sox righthander requested one with him.

And doesn’t that tell you everything you need to know about Pedro?

Business is business, and all that, but shouldn’t the current crazed state of the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry count for something with the players? It did for Andy Pettitte, who admitted he couldn’t have looked his old Yankee teammates in the eye if he had taken the Red Sox up on their offer for him last winter.

And despite a lot of people’s assumptions, I think that kind of loyalty and respect for the rivalry matters to the Evil Empire’s Dark Lord. When he went out and snagged Clemens, Rocket had been in Toronto for a couple of seasons, so it wasn’t as big a deal, fanwise, as it would have been if he’d flipped Boomer into a Bosox cap to acquire someone considered by Yankee fans to rank slightly below the Anti-Christ:

You can argue that the Yankees hated Roger Clemens just as much at one time, and came to revere him as a teammate. But at least Clemens never acted like a clown in the dugout, the way Pedro does when he’s not pitching. At least he never disrespected his teammates with his diva behavior.

And that’s the biggest reason Petey had the meeting with none of the Bronx guys in the room. George and the Tampa Mafia haven’t sat across a baseball diamond and watched Pedro’s antics these past few years and imagined what kind of havoc he would wreak in the clubhouse. The first time Pedro pulled some stunt he’d get “explained to” by Jeter about how you act when you put on Pinstripes. The next time (and you know there would be a next time) Posada would beat him into a stain on the carpet, despite his conciliatory words from last week. And that would just be Spring Training. There is a “Yankee Way” that a complete flake like Pedro could never adapt to, and everyone with the team’s New York contingent knows it.

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