Jeff Pearlman's "The Rocket That Fell To Earth" extinguishes the leftover burning embers of Roger Clemens' baseball dignity in one big 320-page stomp. But Mike Piazza won't be pleased with this book either.
Murray Chass was ridiculed for bringing up Piazza's back acne in a cranky blog post published earlier this month. Today, Chass uses Pearlman's book to get all me-equals-not-crazy on those who criticized his post.
I hope the same readers who sent e-mail messages to this site harshly - in some cases viciously - criticizing me for the Piazza column I wrote earlier this month will read those pages.
The pages of note dissect the long-standing feud between Clemens and Piazza, building up to its broken-bat chucking crescendo in the '00 Subway Series. Pearlman not only manages to out Piazza as a steroid user in the section, but also characterizes him as a timid wimp unwilling to stand up to Clemens. In the book, former Mets outfielder Darryl Hamilton says he was furious at how Piazza reacted after Clemens threw the broken bat at him. "I wanted to know why Mike wasn't going after him. When he was hit in the head I understood because he was shaken up. But in the World Series, why were you confused? This guy threw a bat at you, and you do absolutely nothing? You don't stand up for yourself? You don't defend your manhood? Baseball is a game of pride, and we were all getting on Mike. 'Where's your pride, man? Where's your pride?' "
Well, it's good to know that even though Piazza suffered from horrific back acne due to his steroid use, 'Roid rage' was apparently not a problem for him.