Sports Illustrated has an excerpt from Pedro Martinez’s upcoming autobiography and it’s pretty good. Among the things it covers:
- His lack of focus after the Sox declined to give him a multi-year extension heading into 2003;
- Some serious Manny being Manny moments;
- His anger at the media over that and over the way they painted Sammy Sosa as some simpleton due to his poor English, calling it simple racism;
- The 2003 playoffs, including the Don Zimmer shoving incident and Grady Little leaving him in too long in Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS. Of that, Pedro says his manager made a mistake, but that the responsibility for blowing the lead and setting the stage for Aaron Boone was all his;
Given how much ink has been spilled over the 2003 ALCS, the Sammy Sosa stuff is the most interesting to me in this excerpt. One of the more shameful things in recent baseball history was the way that Sosa was — and still is, to some degree — treated like some pidgin-English speaking idiot. Caricatured at the time of his home run race with McGwire and on into the 2000s as some sort of smling Chico Escuela figure. Then, in the ultimate irony, being castigated by that very same media when he spoke Spanish during his congressional testimony during the PED hearing. Damned if he did, damned if he didn’t I guess.
Anyway, Martinez’s book sounds really good. Can’t wait to read it.