NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Former All-Star catcher Mike Piazza addresses steroid rumors, his feud with Roger Clemens, his monster contract with the Mets and other topics in his soon-to-be released autobiography, “Long Shot.”
In reported excerpts, Piazza writes that he experimented with androstenedione and amphetamines until they were both banned by baseball. He also recalls inquiring to Mets former trainer Fred Hina about human growth hormone before he knew that it was banned substance. Hina later told Piazza that it was not a good idea.
“Apparently, my career was a story that nobody cared to believe,” Pizza writes in the New York Times excerpt. “Apparently, my success was the work of steroids. Had to be. Those were the rumors.”
As for Clemens, the 44-year-old says that there should have been a brawl in the 2000 Subway Series after the pitcher threw a shattered bat in his direction. The incident was on the heels of a dangerous beaning to Piazza’s head just three months earlier.
“There were complications,” he recalls in a New York Post excerpt. “The least of them was the realization that Clemens was a big guy, and I stood a pretty fair chance of getting my ass kicked in front of Yankee Stadium and the world. That was a legitimate concern.”
The book mainly chronicles Piazza’s unlikely rise to stardom from a 62nd round draft pick in 1988. “Long Shot” will be available on Feb. 12.
Piazza was a 12-time All-Star. He batted .308 and had a career .922 OPS in 16 seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Florida Marlins, Mets, San Diego Padres and Oakland A’s. He has the all-time record for home runs hit by a catcher with 427. He recently earned 57.8 percent of Hall of Fame votes, needing 75 percent for an induction.