Outtakes: Nomar Garciaparra sounds off on Boston

June 19th, 2006 → 11:18 pm @ // 7 Comments

This is the third in a series of outtakes from interviews done for Feeding the Monster, to be published on July 11 by Simon & Schuster. This will be the first of three outtakes from this interview with Nomar Garciaparra, which was conducted in Austin, Texas on October 28, 2005. This year, Garciaparra’s first with the Los Angeles Dodgers, the recently converted first baseman is hitting .355 with 8 home runs and 42 RBIs. Read the book for exclusive details on Garciaparra’s career with the Red Sox, his reaction to the July 1, 2004 game against the Yankees, and the contract negotiations that resulted in his being traded to the Chicago Cubs.

On being a superstar in Boston: I don’t know if you’ve ever read a book by Ted Williams. It was called My Turn At Bat and it’s really just his own words. It was written back in 1969, right before he was a manager for the Washington Senators. If you read that, it’s funny what he went through. He never said anything [in his book] about the ownership. It was more about all the stuff that was being said about him [in the media] and the reception he got [from the fans]. It happened to Ted who was probably the most, the greatest person there is. I knew Ted personally. He was the biggest icon in that city. He is a hero to me. But he had to endure that and went through it–the best ever. Jim Rice had to deal with it. You’ve got Roger Clemens, Mo Vaughn, all these guys who are the heros to every single person there, to the fans and they endear themselves and throw themselves into the community. But then on the last stretch, it’s different. It’s the same thing. It’s the same thing with Ted, Jim Rice. It happened with Mo. It happened to Roger.

I mean, Mo Vaughn was a wonderful person. I love Mo. I love this man. He was a role model, this guy. He was never late, he played everyday, even in the worst pain, he talked to me everyday I was there. He was available because he thought maybe that would help. He gave back to the community. This guy is awesome. So he went to a strip joint. What does that have to do with him as person, as a ball player, what he represents? I think actions speak louder than words at times, and if you’re getting that action, that has nothing to do with Mo Vaughn as a ball player and as a person. He encompassed it all, and Roger did the same thing. So when they left, that made you scratch your head. Now Mo is gone, Pedro, myself, maybe Manny.

On the difference between playing in Boston and other cities: It’s just the only thing that’s there is in Boston. It’s just the Red Sox. I always joke about it cause I grew up in LA. You ask somebody in LA, ‘What do you want to do today? Do you want to go to the beach? Do you want the movie? Do you want to go the baseball game?’ And the person will think about it. You ask a person in Boston, ‘What do you want to do? Do you want to go down to the North End, do you want to see a movie, or do you want to go to a Red Sox game?’ ‘You got tickets?’ I mean its like, ‘You have to ask? You are giving me a choice? What, are you crazy?’ That’s the mentality. That’s just the way it is. Which I thought is great—it’s awesome. I think the same way. If you ask me what do I think, I mean I’m playing! What do you want to do, play baseball or see a movie, I want to play baseball. In a city where people thought the same way I did, it was great.

On the differences between the Boston media and the Chicago media: I think that in general—and this isn’t a knock on the media—in general, I think a lot of times the media, and we see it all over society, the media is more interested in the story than the truths so to speak. They have to get a story no matter what it is. But in Chicago there’s a different mentality. They are so supportive of the Cubs, they are just wonderful fans. It’s just different. I don’t know you might have to ask the media about that, but like I said, from reading stuff and history, it’s always been there in Boston.


Post Categories: Feeding the Monster Outtakes & Nomar Garciaparra & Red Sox

7 Comments → “Outtakes: Nomar Garciaparra sounds off on Boston”


  1. Nordberg

    11 years ago

    Nomar rambles.

    Reply

  2. Denzera

    11 years ago

    Someone should tell Dirt Dog that in no way is “Nomar whines about Boston” an accurate description of the content here. I didn’t read one complaint. Did he even read the article?

    Reply

  3. horasio

    11 years ago

    Yeah lol, all I see is a minor insult to the media. Maybe you guys should listen to him.

    Reply

  4. slave2lab

    11 years ago

    Dirt Dog clearly has it out for Nomah.

    How many times have we seen random news about the Nomar (i.e. any time he has a career setback of any kind) when for the most part, no one either cares anymore, or really wants to dwell on the fact that, ‘Yeah, passing on Nomar was a good move!’?

    Let it go. He doesn’t say one bad thing about the fans in this article. In fact he identifies with fan passion in this city. And what he says about the media… who can argue against that?

    Reply

  5. vanillathunder

    11 years ago

    I don’t understand Nomar’s point about being a superstar in Boston. He gives individuals as examples, but then never delineates what happened to them. He says “what he (Ted)went through,” “Jim Rice had to deal with it,” “Then on the last stretch it’s different.” What, what is? What exactly are you talking about?

    Further, take Yaz, Dewey, Can, Tiant, Eck. Perhaps they weren’t stars on the level of Williams and Nomar. However they all seem to have survived their fame in Boston quite well and are still cherished. It seems to me the “problems” that plagued the players Nomar mentions can easily be related to their particular personality/conduct. Williams is widely acclaimed as a selfish prick. Clemens was underperforming, told everyone he wanted to be closer to home then went to Toronto, and then played for the Yankees. Jim Rice was surly and aloof. Mo gained weight every year, and played the “it’s not about the money” card to death, insulting any halfway intelligent fan. Nomar was injury prone and never opened up to the people or seemed to like playing in Boston, his protestations to the contrary.

    I’m curious to read more excerpts and the book, although I’m not a Sox fan.

    Reply

  6. Nordberg

    11 years ago

    Nomar was too thin-skinned for what was given to him in Boston. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. But it ate Nomar alive. He wanted to play and be left alone. In Boston, when you play the way he did, that’s not going to happen. It was his double-edged sword. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. I’m sure there are more cliches. Nomar never got comfortable with the publicity, but he never tried to get his hands around it, either.
    I firmly belive that Nomar’s figurative “collapse” in Boston is connected to Ted Williams’ death.
    Nomar was close to Ted. And when Ted died, Nomar seemed to wilt under the spotlight. It was almost like Ted was his filter, his sounding board, his mentor. When Ted died, he had no one to go to who truly understood the madness. And then he changed. I took me a good year after he was traded to understand that all he really wanted was to play baseball and be left alone. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. But in Boston, that’s not going to work. Some guys can take it and some guys can’t.

    Reply

  7. Ghostrunner

    11 years ago

    As a Sox fan, any ill feelings I had towards Nomar I have long ago gotten over. I hope he wins the triple crown this year. The guy played hard but made himself miserable over contract issues and listening to the media / fan critics too much. I see him more like the onfield Moses of the Red Sox, i.e., Lead everyone through the wilderness but never allowed into the Promised Land.

    The Mo Vaugn comment deserves quick mention. I’m not sure how it was edited but I don’t think Mo caught much grief for going to a ‘Strip Club’. He had too much to drink, drove home, flipped his pick-up over on I-95 and one of those aweful Boston fans pulled over, drove him home before police could arrive to give him a field test saving him from a DUI and he was still well liked by fans afterwards. I think he’s still well liked today. Just because his ‘not about the money’ soundbite is overplayed on WEEI doesn’t make him disliked. Sports radio only vaguely represents reality.

    EDIT: The outtakes aren’t edited at all, except for grammatical errors that sound fine when someone’s speaking but make the speaker look foolish when they’re written out. — Seth

    Reply

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