Boston Radio Hosts Accuse Pedro Martinez of Steroid Use

It is hardly surprising in this day and age of sports shock talk that hosts attempting to bring attention to themselves would attack the most revered Red Sox player of the last 30 years.

Yesterday and this morning, both 98.5 FM (Felger and Mazz) and WEEI (Kirk Minihane) made, at the very least, strong suggestions that former Red Sox ace Pedro Martinez used steroids during his playing career.

The reason for the discussion is because Martinez (along with Roger Clemens, Nomar Garciaparra and Joe Castiglione) were inducted into the Red Sox team Hall of Fame. It’s supposed to be a fun event, one for the fans, and celebrating the achievements of those who brought so many great moments for sports fans. Instead, it becomes a bash-fest.

“Everyone else” did it is the main point of “evidence” that they cite, that and Pedro’s incredible numbers and success against a league that was steroid-riddled at the time. Mike Felger is tired of everyone giving Pedro Martinez a free pass and saying that he did it clean during the steroid era.

Felger additionally cites as his incontrovertible piece of evidence, the 2002 season. The previous year Pedro had injured his rotator cuff, that offseason he worked in a gym where an accused steroid supplier/trainer also work. In the spring of 2002, Martinez reported to spring training more muscular around the shoulders as a result of having worked to strengthen the muscles around the cuff. This is Felger’s evidence.

Their reasons for these accusations are not based in any sort of crusade to find out the truth about matters. It is simply to outrage fans and and encourage cynics to call in and get emotional and bring attention and ratings.

Like I said, it is hardly surprising.

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The Patriots play their second preseason game tonight, (7:30 ET) this time at Gillette Stadium. Check here for the outlets that will carry the game throughout New England and Hawaii: Patriots Preseason TV Broadcast Information

The game will also be carried live on NFL Network, meaning Patriots fans across the country will be able to see what will likely be Tom Brady’s first appearance of the summer. The NFL Network broadcast will be the WBZ-TV version so Dan Roche, Christian Fauria and Matt Chatham get a national audience this week.

The game will be rebroadcast on the NFL Network at the following times:

(All times Eastern)

Saturday August 16th – 9:00am

Tuesday August 19th – 8:00pm

Thursday August 21st – 4:00pm

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Former Patriots tight end Jermaine Wiggins had become a fixture on 98.5, especially on the Felger and Mazz program. Wiggins said good-bye to the station on Wednesday, as he has a new opportunity in the works.

An industry source suggested we check out HOT 96.9  FM next Tuesday morning for Wiggins’ latest gig.

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Molly McGrath enjoying transition to Fox – Chad Finn has a look at the former Celtics in-arena and Celtics.com host, whose star in on the rise at FOX Sports 1.

Jimmy Fund Radio Telethon worth the effort – Bill Doyle looks ahead to the annual NESN/WEEI event next week, and at the debut of the SEC Network.

Congratulations to former WLNE (Providence) sports reporter Courtney Fallon, who has been at NBC6 South Florida for the last two years. She will join CBS Sports Network on Sept 1st as a college football sideline reporter, primarily working Army games, but with other assignments as well.

  • rich shertenlieb’s bald spot

    I’m so sick of the “If you played in the steroid era, you did steroids” talk by radio hacks like Felger. It gets real annoying and Also I understand it’s all for he ratings but I hate how the sports hub does things. I mean it’s criticizing and negativity with a splash of fart and sh*t jokes 247. This is what are generation likes? The human race is in trouble.

    • StoJa

      If you played in the steroid era you’re certainly not above reproach. Yes, even if you wore a Red Sox uniform.

  • Porleau

    Not to mention how disheartening it is to hear Felg, Mazz, et al take a dump all over the notion of a ‘team hall of fame’. ‘All about the money’, apparently. Do these guys ever enjoy anything? Agree or disagree with the HoF selections, but let’s not wreck the whole thing. People enjoy talking/reminiscing about their team’s stars and legends. So what’s the big deal. No one complains about Monument Park at Yankee Stadium.

    • StoJa

      It could be 73* and sunny with a nice breeze in late summer and they would spend 4 hours complaining about the sun making them warm and the slight breeze making the lake slightly choppy. And why enjoy today when winter is three months away? What’s the point? You’re absolutely right, Mike!

      • bsmfan

        You should be pitching that idea to the NBC folks. They did urinate away 3.5b for Weather Channel in 2008 and there is only so much of the day you can show colorful maps that are available online 24/7.

        AL ROKER AND SOME #HOTWEATHERTAKEZ

        • the_other_side

          The new #embracedebate

  • Woody

    I listened to both. Minihane’s “accusation” barely registered compared to Felger and Mazz. That was grade-A trolling. But hey it worked. They had their lapdogs (Cam in Taunton) come out to slurp it up while other psychos went and lost their minds of such accusations.

  • nufced

    The bloom is off the Felger and Mazz rose, and they know it…the only peg they have to hang their collective hats on is shock and negativity. They must have had their panties in a bunch with the press Minihate received over the sophomoric drivel Kirk spewed over Erin Andrews…

  • StoJa

    Hey, ANYBODY who played in the Steroid Era is fair game, as far as I’m concerned. And furthermore the steroid era is not over, as MLB likes to tell everyone. How can it be “over” when 6-7 players a year are still getting caught and suspended. Red Sox fans have the incredibly false and bizarre sense of “everybody else did it but us” mentality.

    • Moon

      There are many Red Sox fans like me who know their team had/has PED users.

    • agramante

      That’s the thing, StoJa. A few got caught…and that’s the full extent of the problem? Players collaborated in the cover-up, by supporting their union’s total opposition to all testing. And I don’t know how much things have changed now, considering how ingrained in athletic culture steroids became in the 80’s and 90’s. I think it’s fair to suspect everybody now. As for the testing, you have to be pretty stupid to get caught. Maybe there are newer tests for masking agents as well (and Manny got caught for using just such a not-very-subtle mask), but I have little doubt the science of evasion has skipped on ahead. The monster power numbers are gone–those are too obvious–but power numbers still now are higher than they were 30 years ago–it’s like there’s been a quantum leap. And every bullpen seems to have two or three guys who pitch in the high 90’s. To say nothing of the rash in recent years, across all sports, of injuries to connective tissue. As a Sox fan, sure–Manny was dirty, Ortiz was (almost certainly) dirty, and there are others we can speculate about. And speculation is largely all we have, unless you want to ignore the issue completely.

  • HighWireNickEsasky

    So according to Felger’s theory, Pedro started juicing for the 2002 season, after his best seasons of 1997, 99 and 2000? (02 and 03 were still very good). Mr. Baseball indeed.
    I really don’t care who did steroids and understand that PED use was pervasive during that era. “Clean” or not, Pedro was the dominant pitcher (by far) during the greatest offensive period in baseball history. But it is irresponsible to make the accusation with absolutely no proof in an attempt to crap on his legacy (and get some attention).

  • the_other_side

    Was this what Finn was referring to earlier when he said the most entertaining part of WEEI was the crossover between Lou and Kirk? Did Lou grill him for his “hot take”? Is there audio available?

  • Babyatskiy

    I like the new and improved Bizarro Dale. He sounds more confident on the air. I especially like when uses his “troll voice” to make fun of the people that he thinks or knows are making fun of him.

  • Babyatskiy

    Does everyone realize how completely absurd it is, that the likes of YARM have the power to keep players like Bonds and Clemens out of the HoF?

    YARM!!!??? For crying out loud.

    Are these mediots to be considered saints? What a sick joke.

  • Babyatskiy

    Jimmy Grop IS OBVIOUSLY the real deal. This kid is gonna be a star in the NFL.

    I cannot wait to NOT hear Gaspar, Johnston, Flynn, Jones, Keefe and Felger NOT backpedal on their criticism of his selection by HC BB.

    Jimmy’s got a backer!!!!

  • Oswald Cobblepott

    Pedroid!

  • bsmfan

    21 Penalties (accepted) in NE/PHI last night. There were 32 total in NO/TEN.

    If electing Werner would have accelerated MLB’s demise, what Goodell is doing to the NFL is their own version. Guess we have to give Cuban some props on his prediction.

    One of the leagues PR firms said the # will drop during the regular season. So, we go from 30 to 20? The only thing stopping any of this is the fact that all of these penalties will destroy the 3 hour windows the NFL has on Sunday (we were close to 110 minutes for the 1st half last night). It seems like they can careless about the fans but interrupting the 4pm starts, affecting the bottom line, will.

    • Babyatskiy

      21 penalties and 5 minutes of television commercials after every play. What a broadcast!

      IIRC, for every 3.5 hours of NFL game on television, there is roughly 15 minutes of actual game play, in total.

      • StoJa

        Average time of a game is 3:06. That’s like 5 innings of a Red Sox/Yankees game.

        • Babyatskiy

          Well I wasn’t comparing the leagues, but if you want to, I enjoy baseball MUCH more than the NFL. It’s not even close.

      • bsmfan

        People calculate between 10-15. This article from 2010 in the WSJ started a lot of the studies (there have been more on different sports and others have done larger studies calculating action):

        http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052748704281204575002852055561406

    • StoJa

      Take a deep breath. It’s pre-season. We go through this every single year. Lots of flags while the refs figure out how to call the games and players getting used to it. It evens out in the regular season when everybody knows what’s what. it always does.

      Pre-season games are always longer. 90+ guys who are shuffling in and out of plays while coaches evaluate them. The pre-season is nothing more than a month of fans over-reacting to everything they see when 1% of it actually affects the real product starting in September.

    • StoJa

      There are no 4pm games. There haven’t been since 2011. They start at 4:15 or 4:25

      • Oswee Larvey Hald

        Thanks for the clarification, Rog.

      • bsmfan

        110*2 = 220 = 3:40 or games ending well past a “4pm start” (4:05-4:25). You miss one because a game is going into OT, nobody is going to mind. More than this, because the NFL wants to placate fantasy players, and advertisers will raise hell to the networks due to the $ they pay.

        I’m not sure of the Sunday lineups because many don’t want to compete against SNF, but FOX/CBS do have programming the air then.

      • ChasInNJ

        Actually 4:05 ET or 4:25 ET.

  • agramante

    And there’s a broader issue here which Bruce ignores in his post, and it’s the main reason Felger takes a run at folks like Pedro from time to time: baseball’s Players’ Union opposed any and all forms of testing or oversight for steroids in the game for over a decade. Therefore all players–every last one–have lost the benefit of the doubt. Felger makes the case often, and I agree, that any players who’ve complained about ye olde cloude of suspicion hanging over the game, should have made attempts to change the union’s chance. (And as a famous player, what better way than to call the union out publicly?) Yes, a move like that would have provoked ostracism. But the guys who kept quiet, whether because they were using, or because they didn’t want to be ostracized, helped build the problem we have now. I do think it’s fair game to suspect anybody of PED use. We’ve all seen how, in all sports, athletes are highly productive into their late 30’s, something that rarely happened before the 90’s.

    As an aside, I think the recent rashes of microfracture surgeries, popped ACLs, and the Tommy John epidemic (it seems that to be taken seriously now as a power pitcher in MLB, you have to have gone under the knife at least once) are directly correlated to steroid use, particularly at an early age (teens/early 20’s), causing the muscles to overtax the other parts of the body–especially tendons, ligaments and bones. J

    So when Felger names Pedro, Ripken, Junior, and other ballplayers (Jeter, anybody?) assumed to be clean, of course he’s trolling. But the argument behind the troll is, in my opinion, 100% valid.

  • agramante

    Those teams all bring a smile to my face too, TMurphy. I’m a fan and I want the Sox to win. I try to be honest in my thinking about the sport (and other sports), including the likelihood of juicers. But the thought of PED use doesn’t interfere with my enjoyment of the game.

  • DryHeave

    I’m in that camp…I couldn’t care less about steroids. You can never be 100% sure who uses and who doesn’t (other than the guys caught red-handed) …so what’s the point?…you can speculate about anybody. The steroid conversation bores the hell out of me. The Sports Media loves it though, makes them feel like “real journalists” breaking a “hard news” story…..oooooh

  • GStill45

    They didn’t spend a lot of time on it, but when Tony Gwynn died, Felger had a throw-away line about Gwynn being a juicer. TONY GWYNN!? Mazz didn’t sink that low, instead he used the first 12 minutes of the Baseball Reporters to explain that Gwynn was just a singles hitter and was overrated. Maybe one of the greatest pure hitters in baseball since Stan Musial.

    Just a wonderful tribute by both to someone who just passed. I don’t know why these shots at Pedro are that noteworthy. It’s par for the course.

  • Paul Barsalou

    Hey “MINIBRAIN” it didn’t work only counted Your name 4 times in 36 comments, Your a hack

  • DryHeave

    The 180 done by the media on Jimmy Garoppolo is just so typical and predictable

  • daver

    He’s a tin god on an extended ego trip.