IT FEELS GOOD TO LAUGH AGAIN
“I just know that for me, you know, putting everything out there and being honest was the most important thing.”
–Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, on coming clean about his steroid use in an interview with ESPN’s Peter Gammons.
“It was such a loosey-goosey era. I’m guilty for a lot of things. I’m guilty for being negligent, naive, not asking all the right questions. And to be quite honest, I don’t know exactly what substance I was guilty of using.”
–Rodriguez, on his steroid use.
“Alex used to tell me negative things about other players around the league who were suspected. So it’s… I feel very betrayed.”
–Rangers owner Tom Hicks, on A-Rod’s steroid-laced time in Texas.
“There’s many things that you can take that are banned substances. I mean, there’s things that have been removed from GNC today that would trigger a positive test.”
–Rodriguez, on his claim that he doesn’t know what he tested positive for in 2003.
“You know, I’ve always been a guy that raced my own race.”
“The one thing that I’m proud of is coming forthright about my own situation.”
GLOBAL WARMING CLAIMS ANOTHER VICTIM
“You know, it was hot in Texas every day. It was over a hundred degrees. You know, you felt like, without trying to over-investigate what you’re taking, can I have an edge just to get out there and play
every day? And that’s what it came down to. I can’t speak for everybody who did. I can only speak for myself.”
“And I’ve proven that in my career, at 18 years old when I came to the big leagues, and at 20 being second to Juan Gonzalez being MVP, probably my best year of all time, you know, followed by my 2007 year. And, again, no peaks and valleys. I mean, there’s some peaks and valleys, but my career overall has been very consistent, not only in games played, but being out there for my team and performing at a high level.”
–Rodriguez, on the effect of steroids on his production.
“I know he’s going through a rough time right now, and I think his apology said it all. He’s disappointed in himself, he made a mistake and we’re all going to move on. … I’m just going to open up my arms, give him a big hug, tell him I love him and we’re going to get through this.”
-Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira
“What it does mean is that I understand only in America can you dream big, work hard, and be rewarded beyond your wildest dreams. There will be adversity along the way, but regardless of the challenges that lie ahead, move forward, address your errors, and right your path.”
“Why would I worry about me being on the list?”
-Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter
“I think there’s a great sample there for someone who has a Hall of Fame vote to say, OK, I have 20 years of clean baseball, and then make up their mind.”
BASICALLY, SELENA ROBERTS FORCED ME TO DO STEROIDS, IS WHAT I’M
“I hope that, again, the Selena Roberts of the world do not try to go back to when I was 15 years old, whatever nonsense she’s going to report in her book, or whatever nonsense she’s-whatever information she’s collected through stalking me the last three or four years to ruin it more than I’ve done for myself. I’ve made more mistakes than anyone, and for that I’m very sorry.”
–Rodriguez, on the Sports Illustrated reporter’s forthcoming book, A-Rod.
“I mean, what makes me upset is that Sports Illustrated pays this lady, Selena Roberts, to stalk me. This lady has been thrown out of my apartment in New York City. This lady has five days ago just been thrown out of the University of Miami by police for trespassing. And four days ago she tried to break into my house where my girls are up there sleeping, and got cited by the Miami Beach police. I have the paper here. This lady is coming out with all these allegations, all these lies, because she’s writing an article for Sports Illustrated and she’s coming out with a book in May.”
“The book is still a work in progress. I assure you she has more drug revelations, as well as other news. Not everything that Selena has on A-Rod’s steroid participation has come out yet.”
–David Hirshey, editor of the Selena Roberts book.
DID HE LOVE STEROIDS MORE THAN CYNTHIA? WE CAN’T WAIT FOR THE SELENA ROBERTS BOOK TO RESOLVE THAT
“This is by far the most serious thing that’s ever happened in my life, along with, you know, my personal life, what happened with my breakup of Cynthia, you know, for the last 13 years. I mean, she was an integral part of my life, and we have two beautiful children. It seems like every year around this time somebody else is coming out with a book, you know, talking about me. You know, again, I think God has a reason for everything, and I’m sorry we have to be in the middle of these controversies.”
“If you’re A-Rod and you’re using from 2001 to 2003 and you hit 52 home runs a year, aren’t you thinking about using it in 2004? With that kind of success, are you going to say, ‘I don’t need this
anymore?’ I don’t know how it works. I don’t know the mind-set of a guy that does that.”
-Former baseball player Pete Rose
“Peter, in our clubhouse, everybody makes fun of me. I’m talking about from the clubhouse kid, to every coach, Larry, Mike, Joe Torre. Every guy on the team. And I like it. I like taking it. I am not a
good ragger, but I am a good receiver. That’s really a compliment the guys feel that comfortable that they can actually make fun of me at any time. So did I hear A-Fraud? We joked around about a lot of
things. Listen, 25 guys have 25 different nicknames. So to me there’s no harm, no foul there.”
–Rodriguez, on the A-Fraud issue discussed in Joe Torre’s book The Yankee Years.
“I know it’s very important for him to continue to add to his numbers. Hopefully he’ll be able to play in spite of everything that’s going to go on, because I know what New York is going to be like with him on a daily basis. It’s going to be very, very difficult, especially early on.”
“If we can win a championship, if we can play well, if we can play well down the stretch, I think New Yorkers love to forgive you.”
HE GETS PAID FOR THIS?
“What Alex did was wrong, and he will have to live with the damage he has done to his name and reputation. While Alex deserves credit for publicly confronting the issue, there is no valid excuse
for using such substances, and those who use them have shamed the game.”
-MLB commissioner Bud Selig
“It is important to remember that these recent revelations relate to pre-program activity. Under our current drug program, if you are caught using steroids and/or amphetamines, you will be punished.
Since 2005, every player who has tested positive for steroids has been suspended for as much as 50 games.”
–Selig, on the consequences of steroid use.
“Once you start tinkering, you can create more problems. But I’m not dismissing it. I’m concerned. I’d like to get some more evidence.”
“It was against the law, so I would have to think about that. It’s very hard. I’ve got to think about all that kind of stuff.”
–Selig, on whether he’ll discipline the Yankee third baseman. (Ken Davidoff, Newsday)
WHAT A TERRIFIC LEARNING EXPERIENCE THIS WAS FOR ALL OF US
“I just want to apologize. I made a mistake, and now I know how serious of a mistake that I made for not answering a question about another teammate.”
–Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada, who pled guilty this week to federal charges that he lied under oath.
“Hopefully, we’re one more step for putting a lot of stuff behind us. It’s been a tough week for baseball and sports in general. We’re finding out that it takes a lot of time for lies to dissipate
and for sins to disappear.”
-Astros general manager Ed Wade, on Tejada’s situation.
“Because of the nature of the offense, considered a petty offense, not a crime of moral turpitude, we believe it will have no impact on his immigration status at all. And he plans-and he will
soon in the next few years-to be welcomed to citizenship in the United States.”
–Mark Tuohey, Tejada’s lawyer, on how the guilty plea will affect his client’s immigration status.
“Um, last night, I took a couple of drinks.”
–Tejada, after the judge asked him if he’d taken anything in the past 24 hours that could affect his decision-making.
THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES, JEFF MOORAD
“There are a lot of things that determine a payroll. I think ours is consistent, relative to our revenue, and obviously we’re also paying off some debt, which is somewhat unique to us. Obviously, I think we have enough to be competitive. We feel good-I think only one team in the past two years has a better winning percentage with lower aggregate spending. It’s a challenge-we don’t have the margin for
error some teams do. Ten teams this year will probably have payrolls of $100 million or greater, and we’re not in that range, but I think we have enough to be very competitive.”
–Diamondbacks general manager Josh Byrnes
“Everyone who sits on this hallway has at least played college baseball, or in the case of Helen Zelman, college soccer. Three of the people played in the major leagues. To have people who are in the front-office inner circle and have played either at the college level or above, across the board, is unusual. That’s probably a pretty good playing background for a front-office. As we’ve built the staff, it is combining your academic background with your playing background, and your skills and experience contribute to your decisions. We don’t want to reject the sort of insights you get from playing; we never have.”
–Byrnes, on the makeup of his baseball operations staff.
“Our team in 2008, obviously our offense was very inconsistent. Generally, it ended up in the middle-third on most metrics of relevance-but it didn’t feel like that, it was either really good or really bad, it wasn’t a consistent run-scoring approach. Our starting pitching was terrific; our bullpen had high points and low points, and obviously people remember the low points. I think even in May and June, when our season sort of got off-track, something which should be more of a constant for us, our defense and baserunning, wasn’t as good as I think it could be. That carried us largely through ’07 and the first part of 08, and I think we gave away some games because of it.”
–Byrnes, on the D’backs problem scoring runs in 2008.
“I don’t know if I could see a five-year-old kid swing a bat without having some kind of comment.”
–Byrnes (Jim McLennan, AZ
THIS MAY WELL LEAD TO A PETER GAMMONS INTERVIEW WE CAN ALL ENJOY
“I was in the clubhouse, having one last quickie with this cute little Florida girl. Charlie Samuels, the equipment manager, came in and caught us. He just stood there shaking his head while I finished
-The legendary Darryl Strawberry, from his new book, Straw: Finding My Way.
“We hauled around more Bud than the Clydesdales. The beer was just to get the party started and maybe take the edge off the speed and coke.”
“We were the boys of summer. The drunk, speed-freak, sneaking-a-smoke boys of summer. [An] infamous rolling frat party . . . drinking, drugs, fights, gambling, groupies.”
“Tear up your best bars and nightclubs and take your finest women … The only hard part for us was choosing which hottie to take back to your hotel room. Lots of times you … picked two or three.”
–Strawberry (Paula Froelich, New York Post)
“It’s going to be cold for a while. Let’s not go through that like we did last year, where everybody said to wait until it gets warm.”
–Tigers manager Jim Leyland, on spring training. (Jason Beck, MLB.com)
“Hopefully, it never gets to that situation. I don’t know how much of it is propaganda, and how much is real. But I don’t think it would be a good idea.”
–Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu, on the idea of Ichiro pitching for Team Japan in the World Baseball Classic. (MLB.com)
“Was there an attempt to hold down salaries and limit the size of contracts? Absolutely. The owners have accomplished everything they set out to do.”
–Anonymous MLB agent (Nick Cafardo, Boston Globe)
“It gives you the opportunity to touch lives in a different way in a more direct light. Speaking of these things, when you’re speaking firsthand, you can talk about, ‘This is how it is, this is what happens.’ And there’s a little more validity behind it when you have somebody who’s actually experienced it.”
–Joba Chamberlain, Yankees reliever, on the plus side of getting a DUI this winter. (Anthony McCarron, New York Daily News)
“The end is coming-sooner or later, it’s going to come. That’s why I don’t worry about those things. The end is going to come. Only God knows when it comes. But I’ll give it my best, whatever I have left.”
-Yankees closer Mariano Rivera, on the end of his career. (Bryan Hoch, MLB.com)
Alex Carnevale is a contributor to Baseball Prospectus.