Scott Spiezio relives his Game 6 memories
Martinez: You couldn't wait to play Game 7?
Spiezio: It was really weird. I remember driving to the park and I had a camera crew with me, but it felt like just another game. When Garret (Anderson) hit that bases-clearing double (in the third inning for a 4-1 lead), it felt like we knew we were going to win because our pitching was so good. That's what it felt like. We really battled, and we were really confident coming into that game.
Martinez: You had a good career after that but then you ended up playing in the Independent Leagues. Why'd you go out that way?
Spiezio: I ended up having issues after the 2007 season. I got in a wreck in California (following a drinking binge), and it made things a lot harder. With St. Louis, I was still close to my kids, and then I was going to have to play with the Braves, and I could tell it was going to be too far and too hard for me. And I had already played 12 years in the big leagues.
Martinez: Did playing in the Independent Leagues allow you to retire on your terms?
Spiezio: That's exactly it. I hit a home run in my last at-bat with the Newark Bears. Tim Raines was the manager, and we had a good little team. Carl Everett was on it. So was Edgardo Alfonzo.
Martinez: Did you feel like you had unfinished business? Is that why you played?
Spiezio: I remember that I took my kids out to a game in August 2009. My two boys got to go on the field and watch batting practice. I started hearing the bat cracking and smelled the grass and it was like, whoa. I started getting an itch. Tim said, "Is it all out of you?" I said, "I don't think so." He said, "If you want to play, I know the owner of the Orange County Flyers." Phil Nevin was the manager. It was within a week after that I went over there and took grounders, took BP, and they said OK. I wasn't really playing for anything, but just to get the itch out. I wanted to go out the way I wanted to, when I wanted to.
Martinez: Is the itch finally gone?
Spiezio: It has been, but it's hard for me to watch the playoffs. I know I can still hit. I think I could probably play. I'm only 39. I played every position, I'm a switch hitter, I can pinch hit. That's the one thing that's tough, the playoffs, because that's when I really enjoyed playing.