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Who's Your Daddy?

P1_pedro_getty       The Yankees, apparently. The Yankees are your Daddy, Pedro. 

     This was the highlight of my postseason, and I'm sure it was for more than one other Sox fan. Pedro Martinez, in an NL uniform, back in New York, with a shot to essentially shut the door on the Yankees' 2009 World Series hopes. Given Pedro's legendary past with the Yankees, it was hard to believe this wouldn't be an event, with Pedro talking some serious smack before the game.

     ""I don't know if you realize this, but ... I might be at times the most influential player that ever stepped [on to the field] at Yankee Stadium," said Martinez. I like to think he meant as a competitor, but given that the Right Arm of God has been known to be a wee bit egotistical, would it surprise you if he meant it? He always has.

     Of course FOX (creators of the genius Star Wars montage a la 2004) put together a cute bit highlighting Pedro's more rude comments, showing ZimmerSlam '03 at least twice (complete with Joe Buck using the word 'throwing' in lieu of 'dodging'), and making Pedro out to be the returning villain, as opposed to the anti-hero that he is to most of baseball located outside of Northern New York City.

     However, in the same interview from Wednesday, Pedro expressed some serious bitterness towards the NY media, stating "... you guys have used me and abused me since I've been coming to [Yankee] Stadium. I remember quotes in the paper, 'Here comes the man that New York loves to hate.' The man? None of you have ever eaten steak with me or rice and beans with me to understand what I'm all about as a man. You might say the player, the competitor, but the man? You guys have abused my name."

     So, knowing the feistty old Pedro, who among us didn't want to see the 5'11" Dominican mowing down Yankees, with 60,000 seperate cries of "Who's-Your-Dad-Dy!?" pressing down on him? I've seen a motivated Pedro, and he's scary, and this is what we saw for the first few innings.

D3c0bbd3a7_Pedro_09182009      Pedro struck out 3 of the first four batters he faced, making Yankees like Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and Mark Teixeira look foolish on 88 mph fastballs and ridiculous changeups. New York eventually got to him, snagging two runs on home runs from Teixeira and Hideki Matsui (the latter a 320-foot Yankee Stadium job), before giving up two hits to begin the 7th and get removed for Chan Ho Park. As the chorus of boos reigned down, Pedro allowed one last impish smile before calling it a night and hitting the showers. So we got six innings, three earned runs, and eight strikeouts. About four or five of those innings were Pedro Martinez innings, and were fun to watch. But, Pedro stumbled, New York's AJ Burnett dominated, and the Yankees are headed to Pennsylvania tied at one.

     Not exactly the game I wanted to watch (a 12-0 rout in which Pedro rung up 20 in a perfect game), but I must say I am still in love with Pedro Martinez. Back, hip, leg, shoulder, take 'em away, he can still pitch. He's clearly a smart pitcher (exhibited when changing not speeds, but deliveries to snag more than one strikeout on the night), with a lot of fire, heart, and guts.

     So we go to Philladelphia at one a head, and hope that Cole Hamels finds 2008, and perhaps just a little bit of me wants this series to come back for a game 6 so Pedro get's one last crack, an entirely likely scenario.

     Thanks for coming out,



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