By: Dorothy Giobbe
NEW YORK YANKEE pitcher John Wetteland recently owned up to statements he made in an interview with a Canadian sports reporter, after initially denying them.
In late June, the Toronto Globe and Mail published an article written by freelancer Danny Gallagher in which Wetteland was quoted making unflattering statements about New York City and playing for the Yankees.
In the interview, Wetteland said that he was unhappy playing baseball in New York and wanted to play in Toronto. When sports reporters for the New York Post asked him about his apparent statements, Wetteland denied having talked with Gallagher and called the article “trash.”
“I didn’t say it. I never talked to the Globe and Mail . . . . I never talked to Danny Gallagher,” Wetteland told the Post.
“This is unbelievable. I come in here every day and do my job. I try to be courteous to [the media] and this is what I get,” Wetteland added.
But after Gallagher produced a tape of the interview, Wetteland’s apparent moral outrage turned to embarrassed acknowledgment.
“I made some offhanded comments and it was wrong,” he said, to the Post, adding that he never expected his quotes to reach media outlets and Yankee management in New York. “I wanted to put this thing to bed because I knew this stuff was irrelevant. I just wanted it to go away.”
Gallagher says he considers the incident over, but he’s glad he had the tape.
“I’ve known Wetteland since 1992 ? we know each other very well, and I was shocked and kind of disappointed because most of it is on tape,” he said.
“Nothing was off the record; everything was all above board and I think he was shocked when it got back to New York,” Gallagher added. “I’m disappointed with what happened. In the past he’s always been open and frank, but I’m glad he owned up to it the next day.
“Next time he’s in Toronto, I’ll go and see what he has to say.”