Yankees Great Discusses His Ups And Downs In Pinstripes With Francesa

NEW YORK (WFAN) — Jorge Posada says there’s still bad blood between himself and Pedro Martinez.

But the retired New York Yankees catcher doesn’t want to get into anything that could worsen a potential rift with friend and former teammate Alex Rodriguez.

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Posada isn’t reversing course on his stance that players tarnished by steroids allegations or performance-enhancing drug bans — including A-Rod — shouldn’t make the Hall of Fame. But he found it difficult to discuss during a wide-ranging interview on Wednesday with WFAN’s Mike Francesa.

“Alex is my friend. (Roger Clemens) is my friend. It’s tough to talk about people that you love in a negative way,” Posada said while promoting his new book, “The Journey Home: My Life in Pinstripes.”

In an interview that aired Wednesday on “CBS This Morning,” Posada acknowledged that A-Rod would be surprised to hear his thoughts on the Hall of Fame. Posada also wondered openly about how the American League MVP race could have turned out differently in 2003, when he finished third in the voting. Rodriguez, who later admitted to using performance enhancers from 2001-03, won the award.

But Posada told Francesa that he’s pleased with what he’s seen lately from A-Rod, who has been steering clear of controversy while hitting the ball with authority in his return from a yearlong PED ban.

“Alex has been with us for a long time now, and I’m super happy about him,” Posada said. “He looks like a humble guy that is having a lot of fun playing the game. I’m happy because he has paid for everything and, you know, I’m happy for him because he looks like a changed man.”

While Posada’s remarks about A-Rod could blow over, his long and bitter rivalry with Martinez isn’t about to end anytime soon.

Earlier this month, Martinez told Francesa that he still has an issue with Posada for insulting his mother — words that sparked the infamous Don Zimmer brawl during the 2003 ALCS, according to the former Red Sox ace.

“He’s still, I guess, holding a grudge and whatever,” Posada responded on Wednesday. “It is what it is, and you move on. I have moved on but I guess he hasn’t.”

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“I don’t remember saying anything about his mother,” he added. “But if I did, whatever.”

The 43-year-old later said that one of the top two home runs of his career came against Martinez. It was just a regular-season long ball, one that he “enjoyed a lot” because it came against Pedro.

“I can’t believe he’s talking about it during his Hall of Fame tour, bringing me up,” Posada said of Martinez. “Yeah, we don’t like each other.”

He also talked about the bitter final months of his Yankees career, when in 2011 he took himself out of the lineup after manager Joe Girardi dropped him to ninth in the batting order. Posada said he would have done some things differently.

“I would have communicated a little bit more with Girardi, and I didn’t,” he said. “I kept my anger inside and it kept boiling over.”

Posada admitted that he had major issues with Girardi, and still has some unanswered questions.

“I had no problems with Girardi as my teammate,” Posada said. “I don’t know what happened from teammate to coach to manager. … There was times that I did not understand what he was trying to do.”

A five-time All-Star, Posada hit .273 with 275 home runs in 17 seasons with the Yankees and was a key member of their last four World Series-championship clubs.

Listen to the full interview for Posada’s thoughts on his relationship with Derek Jeter, the greatness of Mariano Rivera, what it was like to be in the clubhouse during the Steroids Era, the Yankees retiring his number in August and his father’s influence on his career:

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