NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Former Yankee Tino Martinez, who resigned as the Marlins’ hitting coach on Sunday, joined 98.7 The Fan’s Booger and Rich in Tampa Bay on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the recent allegations that he was verbally and even physically abuse to Marlins players.
The four-time World Series champion was adamant that he never grabbed a player’s throat, The 45-year-old explained that after doing drills in May, one player wouldn’t pick up balls in the batting cage.
“I said, ‘Hey, Derek (Dietrich), would you help us pick the balls up?'” Martinez told Booger and Rich. “And he says, ‘Well I didn’t hit them. Why should I?’ I said, ‘Because you’re part of this team. Help us pick the balls up.’ He goes, ‘But I didn’t hit them.’ So as he was walking towards me I grabbed his jersey, and I told him, ‘I told you to f—– pick the balls up. You’re f—– part of this team. I don’t want to hear anymore.’ And that was it.”
Martinez said that Dietrich finally picked the balls up.
The former two-time All-Star exclaimed that after that there wasn’t another problem for a while, but a similar incident occurred later on. Martinez told Booger and Rich that again, he told a player to pick the balls up, “and basically that was it.”
And then the bombshell.
Dietrich claimed that Martinez grabbed him by the throat, the Tampa native said.
The former first baseman said that he was completely shocked when he heard of the allegations. He said that he worked very well with Dietrich for two months before he was sent down to the minors last week. At that time, the former slugger said, Dietrich came forward with the allegations.
“That really surprised me, bothered me, and I felt like some of the people in the organization didn’t believe my story, and it was time to get out of there,” Martinez told Booger and Rich. “…It makes me feel terrible, that’s the only reason that I’m speaking out. I was just basically going to walk away and let it blow over, but when I read this stuff in the newspaper I thought I had to defend myself and give my side of the story.”
Martinez told Booger and Rich that if he had to do it all over again, he would have handled the situations the same way.
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