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> Mike Sharperson interviews Tom Martin


Mike Sharperson:
Thanks for agreeing to do the interview, Tom. The first question I have to ask, what's it like being alive?

Tom Martin: Being alive is cool I guess. I don't remember ever not being alive, so I'm assuming it's better than being dead. But you'd know better than me. You miss being alive?

MS: Sometimes. But things are pretty nice up in heaven. We get free cable.

TM: That's cool. How do you pass the time?

MS: Free cable.

TM: Besides watching free cable, what do you do?

MS: I play baseball in a pickup league with Tim Crews. Daryl Kile threw a 4-hit shutout against us last week.

TM: Let me know if a spot opens up in the bullpen.

MS: Sure thing.

TM: So does heaven have animals in it too?.

MS: Excuse me?

TM: Have you seen Mr. Ed or any of the original Lassies?

MS: Mr. Ed didn't make it into heaven because he's a Nazi. Go back and watch the show. He's subtle but if you read between the lines you can figure out his agenda.

TM: Is the food good? I mean, is it nothing but 5-star restaurants and fine wines?

MS: Actually, it's cafeteria style.

There's an awkward pause as Martin lets this disappointing news sink in.

MS: But there's a dessert bar that's all you can eat.

TM: That is so cool! What about-

MS: Look Tom, I know you're curious about Heaven, but they ain't gonna let me back up there unless I have an interview, so I'm asking the questions now.

TM: Sorry.

MS: So this is a pretty sweet pad you got here. How can you afford a place like this on your meager salary?

TM: Actually, it's Shuey's place. He thought I should do the interview here because I live in a one bedroom apartment above a Jiffy Lube. It smells like exhaust and fishsticks.

MS: How long have you known Paul Shuey?

TM: Since we were kids. If it weren't for him, I wouldn't have made our high-school baseball team. He put in a good word for me with the coach. I didn't play much. But I got to wear the uniform and travel around with the team like I was one of the guys. But those days are behind me now that I'm a major league ball player.

MS: What is it like in the bullpen during the course of a ballgame?

TM: It's fun. There's always an adequate supply of food. Gagne and Wilson Alvarez always arm wrestle over the last piece chicken. Mota's usually hung over. When we're on the road, he gets horrible headaches from the crowd noise. Luckily it's never loud enough in Dodger Stadium to affect him. Dreifort's reading some book on anorexia. I'm usually scouring the want-ads looking for work because, let's be honest, sooner or later they're going to realize I can't pitch. We make Duaner Sanchez sit inside. There's just something about his name that freaks out the rest of us.

MS: What's been your most embarrassing moment as a major leaguer?

TM: Early last season, I was in the bullpen. I had pitched a scoreless inning the night before and struck out 2 of the batters I faced. So the following day I was still riding that high. I heard a group of kids yelling my name from the bleachers. "Tom!" they were yelling. "Tom Martin, can you come here?" The kids were holding baseballs and had pens in their hand and it was such an honor to finally be recognized as part of the team. So when I walked over to the kids,, they asked me if I could get Gagne's autograph for them.

MS: What's been your most successful moment as a major leaguer?

TM: I got Gagne's autograph for those kids. Ungrateful pricks.

MS: Who is your roommate on the road?

TM: Paul Shuey.

MS: Who is your favorite Dodger pitcher of all time?

TM: Paul Shuey.

MS: Who is your best friend off the field?

TM: Paul Shuey.

MS: If you could have sex with anybody in the world, who would it be?

TM: Dreifort's wife.

MS: Nice!

Sharperson and Martin high-five.

MS: That's it. We're done.

TM: Thanks. Let me know about the bullpen spot in your league.

MS: Actually, I just got a page. Says you're starting next week.

Martin passes out. Sharperson smiles as he leans over the unconscious Martin and takes his wallet.



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