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Roger Clemens: Yankee or Traitor?

Submitted by
Krissy Wade to
championyankees.com
  August 6th, 2004
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There are some things in life that are so hard to let go of. Even today, months after Roger Clemens left the Yankees to retire, and then join the Astros, whenever I hear the name Clemens, I immediately picture the interlocking N and Y of the Yankees. Every now and then, when I watch Jon Leiber pitch, I catch a glimpse of the 22 on his back, and for a brief moment I donít remember.

It hurt when Andy Pettitte left. He was a home grown Yankee. We thought he would always be there. But Clemens? He told us he wanted to retire as a Yankee. He said he wanted to go in the hall of fame as a Yankee. He assured us that he was indeed a Yankee. And we bought it all. We were so caught up in the greatness of The Rocket, that we even forgot to hate him for his past as a member of the Redsox. Yet, all of that was okay, because Roger Clemens told us he only wanted to be a yankee, and we believed him.

When Roger Clemens walked off the mound for the last time in game four of the World Series, Yankee fans mourned. We never really believed he would leave, until that heart breaking moment, when he made his final exit. We begged him to stay, and he told us he was needed at home. Nobody liked it. But we accepted it. In the end, Yankee fans gave Clemens their heartsÖ and he broke them.

For five years, Clemens starred for the Yankees, and was in turn loved by the fans. He displayed the mindset of a winner, and the heart of a champion. He was everything we had dreamed he would be. He did everything that anyone ever asked of him. He was the ultimate teammate, and the ultimate winner. He gave his heart to the Yankees, and he was rewarded with two World Series Rings.

So, when I think back on Clemens time in pinstripes, however short it may seem, I canít help but smile. I believe Clemens was genuine in his desire to retire. He was just given an offer he couldnít refuse. It had not been his intention to betray the fans of New York, and for some reason, I still canít help but believe him when he says he will go into the hall of fame as a Yankee. Clemens really had loved the Yankees.

Will we ever see Clemens take the mound in a Yankee uniform again? Anything is possible, but it is highly unlikely. But does that really change anything? We have only to close our eyes and we can recall just what Clemens had meant to the Yankees, and to us, his fans. How will Clemens be remembered? Astro or Yankee? For five years, he was a Yankee, and a winner. So, whenever I think of Clemens, Iíll see a hall of fame pitcher in a pinstriped uniform with an interlocking N and Y on his chest.


Written by Krissy Wade for championyankees.com
All Original Content
May not be copied without the consent of
The Unofficial Website of the New York Yankees

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