Mench Forever After.
JEFF PEARLMAN: OK, Kevin. So there’s this old journalistic trick, where you butter a subject up with a bunch of softball questions, then save your hard one for last. However, you’re a fellow Blue Hen, which means you have honor, pride and honesty (Admittedly, I just made that code up right now. But it sounds about right). Hence, I’m gonna lead off with the toughie. You were a muscular power hitter during the 2000s. Your best years came with the Texas Rangers. In 2006 you hit homers in six straight games, and you once hit three home runs in a single game. Kevin, did you use PED during your career? If so, how and why? If not, why—when so many others did—didn’t you? And do you think it’s wrong for someone to ask such a question?
KEVIN MENCH: No, I was never. I’ve always heard the rumors. But if you look at the numbers, look at the amount of plate appearances I had, and then the production numbers. As opposed to when the numbers diminished and then my production. I was the guy who needed to play every day. Some guys are made, like a Lenny Harris, the best pinch hitter ever. That was just a mentality guys had, and I couldn’t do that. I needed some at-bats to get going and to get into the flow of thing. I remember my girlfriend in college, they told he I was on steroids in college. I haven’t. I’ve been the same size—always. I’ve had guys ask me about it, but nobody has ever approached me to do it.
J.P.: Why wouldn’t you? You obviously knew the benefits, and you knew guys were using. So why not?
K.M.: You look at the effects. You look at what it does to people. You see the guys who have the good years—a guy will be throwing low-to-mid 80s, and all of a sudden he’s throwing over 100 mph. And then he falls apart. Or the guys who have good years and then you never see them again. They fall apart. They physically fall apart. I enjoy my life too much. It’s one of those things—like, ‘This is your brain on drugs. Any questions?” It’s one of those things you get scared off of. I mean, I heard the things; that I was using. But growing up the way I grew up—it takes a lot more to scare me off than that. Look at the numbers. If I had 500 at-bats, I could hit 25 home runs.
JP: You sound like a guy who feels as if, were he given more of a chance to play regularly, you would have had a better career …
K.M.: It’s true. it all started when I got traded. It’s hard to get traded. You get into a groove and you’re accustomed to everything and people … teammates. And all of a sudden it’s, ‘Hey, pack your #### and leave. Right now.’ And all of a sudden it finally sets in and you go, ‘Holy ####, what just happen.’ It doesn’t hit you right away. That was the hardest thing. Got traded, go over there [to Milwaukee] and I’m a platoon player in Milwaukee. The next year I came back and I told them, ‘I still feel I can play every day.’ Nobody gave me an opportunity. That’s how it is. They go younger and cheaper, and you’d have guys—you knew the guys who were taking stuff … they’d have one good year, they get paid and all of a sudden they just fall off. it’s unfortunate, but you know what, I don’t need money that bad.
Posted: April 04, 2013 at 06:01 AM | 28 comment(s)
Login to Bookmark