Ex-Yankees Slugger To Boomer & Carton: I Used Belt For Fear Factor

NEW YORK (WFAN) — Retired slugger Gary Sheffield says he never disciplined his kids with a tree branch, but he would threaten them with a belt if necessary.

Sheffield spoke at length about punishing his children on WFAN’s “Boomer & Carton” show Tuesday when asked about the scandal in Minnesota involving Adrian Peterson, who was charged with child abuse last week for using a “switch” on his 4-year-old son.

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“I never went to no tree,” said Sheffield, who now serves as a baseball analyst for TBS. “I went to my closet, got my belt.”

When asked if he has “done that,” Sheffield responded: “Yeah, I’ve done that. But like I said, your kid is four and you have to keep that in mind.”

“I always tell my kids, ‘I just get disappointed when I ask you to do something and you don’t do it,’ ” he added. “But I never get mad at my kids. And I think when you get mad, it can take you over the top.”

The former Yankees outfielder later clarified, saying the belt was used for intimidation only. Sheffield has three sons with his wife Deleon Richards, with two under the age of 10. He also has four other children.

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“This is about taking a different approach,” Sheffield said. “You stand over your child and let them know with authority that you mean what you say. And that should be enough for a man.”

As for Peterson, the 45-year-old Sheffield said he wouldn’t he wouldn’t pass judgment on “how a person raises their kids.”

“I don’t know what’s right and what’s wrong in this situation,” he said. “But at the same time, times are different.”

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