Saturday, January 8, 2011

Clemens still haunting former pal Pettitte

I don't know if the upcoming trial of Roger Clemens is causing Andy Pettitte to have doubts about returning to the New York Yankees for one final baseball season, but Clemens continues to haunt Pettitte on a personal level.

Bob Klapisch wrote a compelling column that raised the possibility that the Clemens’ situation is preventing a reunion between Pettitte and the Yankees, which Yankee fans desperately want and the team desperately needs. I would imagine Pettitte would have already told the Yankees he wasn’t coming back if the Clemens trial really was a factor in his decision process because he has no control over when he might be summoned to help send his pal to prison. More likely, Pettitte is just having a more difficult internal struggle than usual, with his oldest children just years away from college and coming off an injury-plagued second half that had Pettitte frustrated by his inability to help his team.

But Pettitte obviously still misses his former friend. His desire to rekindle the friendship was on full display during his Centerstage interview with Michael Kay last year. I don’t think he wants Clemens back in his life enough to lie for him on the stand, but a court appearance at the trial would be the final nail in the coffin of the friendship. I would suggest that a conviction of Clemens would finally release the strange hold he still seems to have on Pettitte except that I think Andy would just torment himself about the role he played in Clemens’ demise, even if all he did was put his hand on the Bible and tell the entire truth.

Putting the baseball issue aside, what I hope for Andy Pettitte is that he somehow finds peace with whatever happens with Clemens, that he realizes that Clemens made his own choices and has to live with the ramifications and that he appreciates the friendship for what it was, but finally figures out a way to move on.

Thanks to Keith Allison via Wikipedia for the photo.

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