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An interesting interview with Doc Gooden

Jun 2, 2013, 3:52 PM EDT

Gooden Strawberry

Doc Gooden is clean and sober now and has a new memoir coming out. In connection with that he gave an interview to Andrew Goldman of the New York Times. It’s short, but packs a lot of punch. This one was … interesting:

Q: You had a messy childhood. You write that your father took you on visits to his mistress, and your mother tried to shoot them both with a .38. 

A: She did get him in the shoulder and unloaded the whole gun, I guess, trying to get the woman. My mom was a lovely woman but a tough cookie.

Guess I’m going to have to find a different way to describe my mom, because I’ve always used “lovely” and “tough cookie” with her, but now it seems to pale a bit.

Other interesting comments about his friendship — or lack thereof — with Darryl Strawberry and about the time Lenny Dykstra tried to spring him from “Celebrity Rehab.” Which, if successful, could have ended in a Butch and Sundance or Thelma and Louise situation. Or maybe some combination of the two.

  1. mazblast - Jun 2, 2013 at 4:16 PM

    Are those towels by the players’ feet in the picture, or piles of cocaine?

    Oh, to have a dollar for every “I’m clean and sober now and just happened to have written a book” article I’ve seen in my life.

    • paperlions - Jun 2, 2013 at 5:08 PM

      You don’t have a few hundred bucks? Because….you know…that’s the most you would have at only a buck a pop.

      • historiophiliac - Jun 2, 2013 at 7:18 PM

        He meant in 1920 dollars. Inflation.

      • paperlions - Jun 2, 2013 at 8:01 PM

        I think he just really really wishes he had 17 dollars (or at least 9).

  2. antelope850 - Jun 2, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    I don’t have much interest in buying his book, but the guy has always owned up to the fact that he could fall off the wagon again as he’s done several times. He knows being “clean and sober” is a lifelong process for him. As a Mets fan, I’ll always be frustrated by what might have been and should have been for him and Strawberry, and really that whole mid to late 80s Mets team, if he/they had stayed clean. But that comment was a little too snarky for my liking.

    SNY sat with him during Matt Harvey’s game last week as Doc analyzed Harvey’s pitching throughout the game. It was great stuff. I hope the guy can stay clean finally.

  3. weaselpuppy - Jun 2, 2013 at 4:44 PM

    I guess “lovely woman” is code for unprosecuted felon, and “tough cookie” is code for attempted murderess…

    I guess Dykstra was a “swell guy” and Snortberry was “just a mixed up kid”…


    • thebadguyswon - Jun 2, 2013 at 5:17 PM

      Give it a rest.

    • badintent - Jun 3, 2013 at 4:43 PM

      Thanks for the Eubonics decoding. You can now work for the NSA and DEA and CIA and anything that ends in A and waste taxpapayer dollars.Can we change the IRS to ISH ? Internal Sh*t Heads ?

  4. jhb64 - Jun 2, 2013 at 4:56 PM

    If they weren’t ball players we wouldn’t care what happens to them. They ALL should have been role models.

    • American of African Descent - Jun 2, 2013 at 5:47 PM

      Athletes are not role models. They are not paid to be role models. Athletes are paid to play ball, not to raise your or my child.

      • pjmitch - Jun 2, 2013 at 6:49 PM

        I’m not paid to be a role model, but within a company and due to my position I take on that responsibility to be a role model for those under me. I’m sure or at least hope that most of us do the same things in our jobs and personal life.

        An athlete saying, “I should not be looked at as a role model” is just an excuse for him to act like an irresponsible immature individual, but then again we know that a lot of athletes are brought up and treated that way.

      • forsch31 - Jun 2, 2013 at 8:19 PM

        “within a company.” That’s not exactly the same thing as an athlete being a role model for fans. Are you a role model for your customers?

        Unlike you and me, professional athletes are put on pedestals by fans and by media, and equally torn down whenever they make a misstep. The level of scrutiny is much, much more intense and broadcast widely than a normal life for Joe and Jane.

        Players are just players.

  5. kicksave1980 - Jun 2, 2013 at 6:35 PM

    AAD- You’re right, they aren’t paid to raise other people’s kids, but being a role model comes with the paycheck, whether these guys like it or not. Regardless of how kids are raised, they all have heroes. Kids up until a certain age idolize their favorite athletes like a religious figure. Personally, I dont care how these guys spend their time out of uniform, but in the age of Internet and 24-hour ESPN, being careful with your actions is part of the gig. Fortunately most athletes understand that.

    • paperlions - Jun 2, 2013 at 8:06 PM

      This role model business is an adult construct that nearly no kids get….at all. Think back to when you were a kid. Did you idolize any players? If so, what did you know or care at all about anything that happened to them (or that they did) that wasn’t on the field? I seriously doubt you were aware of anything at all, and if you were…you didn’t care.

      The whole “role model” and “OMG, the children” bits are 100% adult constructs that don’t phase kids in the way adults think they do at all….and it is strange that adults think that kids think and feel things that as kids those adults never felt or thought.

  6. xmatt0926x - Jun 2, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    I’ve heard about the Dykstra breaking him out of rehab incident a hundred times and it’s just never sunk in my head that it’s possibly true. I just read it again in that Gooden interview and I sit here wondering yet again if that story can possibly be true. I know he’s a loop job but he really got a couple goons to go break Doc out of rehab, out of nowhere? I still think I need video evidence. I try to picture the scene in my head and it seems crazier to me than if an alien ship landed in my back yard.

    • jwbiii - Jun 2, 2013 at 9:19 PM

      How did I miss this?

      Dykstra may be crazier than that alien ship in your backyard.

      • mazblast - Jun 3, 2013 at 12:43 AM

        Dykstra spent two whole years in jail–and now he’s going to REHAB? What was he taking during those two years?

  7. dfpoor - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:36 AM

    Saw Gooden make his first or second start at Shea as a rookie. He struck out 16 versus the Dodgers. The final play was Sax out at the plate on a relay from Wilson to Backman and Carter. There was a lot of talent on the field that night. Probably the greatest game I ever saw in person. Thanks for the memories Doc, hope you stay sober.

  8. multiplemiggs - Jun 4, 2013 at 10:49 AM

    I listened to Boomer and Carton on WFAN when Doc first told anyone about that Dykstra story. Doc was never busted out of celebrity rehab but Dykstra did show up to visit him with some henchmen in an attemp to do so. The cameras were off and it was a private visit. Dykstra tried to convince Doc to come with him and leave and even thought they brainwashed him to use him for TV ratings. If anyone gave them a problem the henchmen would have taken care of it. But Doc laughed and said he’s fine and he’s getting help and convinced Dykstra he did’nt need him to break him out. Pretty funny stuff.

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