Sneak preview of YES Network special
These quotes are from the YES Network, which will air their 2009 Yankees season preview special tonight at 10 p.m. ET, after the Yankees-Red Sox telecast:
Michael Kay interviewing Alex Rodriguez
What do you say to guys like me and fans that were disappointed in what you did?
Well, number one, that I’m very sorry. You know, we’re role models, and I think athletics plays a big part in our culture, especially in the world we’re in today. There’s so much negativity and sadness going on around the world and the U.S. that baseball…people look at baseball for a savior or for inspiration, and I know that I’ve let a lot of people down. I know there’s kids out there that I’ve never met before, and I probably never will, that I’ve hurt them, and for that I’m very sorry. And, you know this Michael, I’m not very good with words, but no matter what I sit here and tell you today, it’s not going to express how truly sorry I feel for what I have done.
What have your teammates meant to you throughout this ordeal?
Well, I mean again, I’ve apologized to them individually and as a group, and you know, they’ve been tremendous Michael. I mean, from the emails, to the texts, to the voicemails. Every single one of those guys at one point has reached out to me, and made me feel comfortable and has been very supportive, and I don’t think without that support I would be able to get through this. With that said, I hope that we take this crisis that I’ve put myself under, and this you know, this kind of mess that I’ve built for myself, and hopefully we can come together and become a tighter team. And hopefully nine months from now we’ll be celebrating.
Would this be easier on you if the other 103 names were out? That it’s not just Alex Rodriguez, there were 103 other guys who did this, why aren’t there names out?
Well this is really about my mistake, Michael. You know, many nights I fell asleep thinking about who I can blame, and this guy, or that guy. And when I woke up I kept coming back to the same person; it’s me. I mean, there’s no one to blame. I hope those 103 names never come out.
How about this team that they’ve put together? They’ve got two great pitchers they’ve brought in, a former teammate of yours with the Rangers in Mark Teixeira, you’ve got Nick Swisher. How good could this team be?
I think defensively we’ve improved a lot. I think our pitching has tremendous depth. Bringing in a lefty like CC Sabathia and an A.J. Burnett, who really come into his own the last few years and has learned a lot from (Roy) Doc Halladay, I think that’s also going to help him. I’m excited about our team; I think we have a really good opportunity and since I’ve been here in my six years, Michael, this is by far the best pitching we’ve had. And, as you know, that’s kind of what it takes to get the ring at the end of the year.
People have knocked you before, Alex, is that “Alex wants everybody to like him,” and “he tries to be a chameleon so everybody likes him.” Do you worry that people might not like you?
Well, I’ve given up on that! I’ve given up on that; it’s just the way it is. I mean, look, I feel like right now, that, not too many people like me, so I’ve given up on that. As long as my teammates like me, and they respect me, and my two daughters love their Daddy, I’m going to go out and do the very best I can. Look, I really screwed up, and for that I’m sorry. I’m just happy to be playing baseball again.
A.J. Burnett talking to Kimberly Jones about Yankees players “recruiting” him
Johnny (Damon) called me quite a bit (during the “recruiting” process), Alex called me a handful of times. I busted (Derek) Jeter because he didn’t call me at all. He was too busy calling CC (Sabathia). But, yeah, they (Yankees players) called a lot and really expressed how much they needed me and wanted me over here.
Nick Swisher talking to Jones about his livening up the clubhouse
I think it was the first couple days that I was there, it just seemed like it was real stuffy, and the next thing you know, I just put on some tune (in the clubhouse) and we just started jamming a little bit and the next thing you know, one guy came over and started dancing and the next thing you know it’s like “Dance Party ’99″ in there. So we’re having a lot of fun. It’s a great group of guys, great core group of guys. The veterans and leaders on this team are amazing and I’m just happy to be a part of the team.
Derek Jeter talking to Jones about Nick Swisher’s energy
Yeah, that’s what you call it, energy. He’s fun, He’s cut from the same cloth as Giambi and them from their Oakland days. They come in here and they enjoy themselves, they want to have fun.