Mike Piazza blames Vin Scully for turning fans against him during his contract stalemate before he was traded to the Florida Marlins in 1998.
The accusation came out during Piazza’s new book, Long Shot. The former baseball player was looking for a $105 million contract and hoped to stay with the Dodgers, though he set a February 15 deadline to reach a new contract agreement.
Scully, an iconic Dodgers broadcaster, interviewed Piazza about the deadline. The Los Angeles Times reports that Piazza wrote:
“He wasn’t happy about it. And Scully’s voice carried a great deal of authority in Los Angeles.”
In the eAdd Mediand, the Dodgers apparently made him a $76 million contract as a take-it-or-leave-it offer. He wrote he would have signed at $79 million and that the team leaked that it offered $80 million.
But Scully denies that he’s to blame for Dodgers fans’ dislike of Piazza. He stated on Wednesday, “That’s not true at all.” Instead, he claims that he would never criticize a player over contract negotiations, notes The Chicago Tribune. Piazza added:
“I have no idea where he is coming from. I rally have no idea. I can’t imagine saying something about a player and his contract. I just don’t do that, ever.”
Mike Piazza ended up ripping the Dodgers in a 1998 opening day interview. He hasn’t made an appearance in Dodger Stadium since he retired in 2008. He also declined when the team offered to honor him with a bobblehead night in the 2012 season.
Former Dodgers Manager Tom Lasorda claimed, “He doesn’t want to come back because he thinks the fans will boo.”
Do you think Piazza is right to blame Scully for his rift with Dodgers fans?