Former Met Mike Piazza took karate lessons in anticipation of a fiery showdown with crosstown rival Roger Clemens, he writes in his new book.
The storied Mets catcher, recently snubbed along with every other candidate for the Baseball Hall of Fame, addresses his long standing feud with the former Yankee in “Long Shot,” along with rumors that he was gay, his romances and allegations that he took performance enhancing drugs.
Piazza recalls the July 8, 2000 inter-league game between the Mets and the Yankees, when Clemens launched a two-seam fastball near the Mets catcher’s head. After that, Piazza writes that he started taking karate lessons in order to fend off against Clemens. The two later sparred off during the 2000 World Series, during which Clemens threw a fragment of broken bat at Piazza as he headed for first base.
After appearing on a ballot with several admitted steroid users, Piazza flat out denies using any performance enhancing drugs. He did, however, say he and other baseball players used now-banned stimulants that were legal and common at the time.
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