CSN Bay Area

Pablo Sandoval on leaving Giants for Red Sox: “I just want to be me.”

Pablo Sandoval Boston Red Sox mohawk

BREAKING NEWS: Pablo Sandoval is in town. It’s barely been talked about around here, I know.

On Monday morning he was presented with his 2014 World Series ring by a contingent of Giants that included Bruce Bochy, Larry Baer and Bobby Evans. Brian Sabean didn’t make the trip, which isn’t a surprise considering the amount of travel his new role entails along with Sandoval’s comments about Sabean from that Bleacher Report story by Scott Miller.

Sandoval capped his day with an 11th inning home run to give the Red Sox a 5-4 win over the A’s, then the next day he was interviewed by CSN Bay Area’s Amy Gutierrez. I transcribed the interview (as best as I could) below. He didn’t mention anything specific about contract offers before the 2014 season, but he made it pretty clear that he didn’t appreciate how his former team let the media know they were concerned about his weight.

Amy G: You had some statements that came out that were tough to hear, maybe to say, for Giants fans to hear, for your former teammates to hear. Let’s start with who you missed, and you said you missed Boch and Pence. As you just said, three championships in five years. Did you leave anyone out?

Sandoval: I don’t. If I’m going to start naming, name by name, it’s going to be a long interview. So I don’t say nothing wrong. It probably came out wrong. The guy put the wrong part, because everyone want a piece that I say something wrong to put out there. So I just say Bochy is like my dad. He always got my back. He always supported me no matter what. He believed in me. Hunter is a guy that wants to play every single year. He inspired me to play the right way. But at the end of the day, I miss those guys, I miss all the coaching staff. There’s a lot of things. The fan support that we have was big. So it was just everything. It probably came out wrong, the wrong side. But at the end of the day I meant it, that I said it.

Amy G: Did you find it in a tough spot that you win your third world championship, to maybe want to stay now?

Sandoval: It was tough, it was tough. I got three days that I don’t sleep. I don’t even eat. So it was a tough decision for me, because you see this part. You put this situation on both sides. This is the team that gave me the opportunity to be in baseball, opened the door to be a big leaguer, and gave me three World Series. Then I’m going to ruin that, move to the other side to find a new challenge, try to find out something new, that I want to try to find something different, different stadium, different fan support. It was tough. It was tough. It was not about the money. It wasn’t about the fan support. It was about trying something new, something different. That was the tough moment for me.

Amy G: You made a comment that when you went to Boston, you felt at home. Did you not feel at home in San Francisco, or did you at one point feel at home in your seven-year stretch, and then you needed a different scenario?

Sandoval: I felt at home here. In San Francisco I will always feel at home, because this is the team that gave me the opportunity. But at the end of the year, it was tough. It was tough because when I came here, I just want to play ball. I just want to be me. And at the end of the year, of my career here, I can’t be me. So it was tough.

Amy G: Did you feel that you were not treated with respect last year?

Sandoval: Do you want me to tell you the truth?

Amy G: I do.

Sandoval: Yeah. I feel like that.

Amy G: Why?

Sandoval: Something. Things happened. A lot of things. I know they want me to be the best, they want me to be healthy, all the kind of comments they say. But at the end of the day, when you are a person and employer, you can come to me and tell me you have to do this. You don’t have to come straight up to the media, be public, say everything that you say.

Amy G: You got your ring last night.

Sandoval: Yeah.

Amy G: You saw Bochy, you saw Larry Baer, you saw now new GM Bobby Evans. How was that moment for you and reunion?

Sandoval: Exciting. Exciting for me to see my dad. I call Bochy, he’s my dad. You know, see Larry, that kind of stuff. Now I’m happy because Bobby, he came with me, all my minor league (years). It’s exciting to see all those guys and tell them that I miss them. It’s a good relationship. We care about it, all my career here. I got nothing with them. Nothing with no one. I still love those guys. They teach me a lot of things. Bochy teach me a lot of things. It’s happy to see them out there. It’s way different because they came to the hotel, surprised me. Everything changes sometimes, but you have to care about all those things. You have to have heart to appreciate the things.

Amy G: What are you want to say to the fans that are going to watch this? They missed you, they didn’t want you to go, they love their Panda. And are hurt a little bit, (A) that you left, that’s a business decision, but some of the statements that came out. What do they mean to you as you go on in your career? What did you learn from them?

Sandoval: They mean a lot. I respect my fans. I don’t want to disrespect no one out there. Because I love them, I played for them. Those guys come every single day to bring food to our table. So we have to respect that. So I don’t try hurting no one. It’s a business. It’s a professional business. Some days you’re going the right way, some days you don’t. So when you’ve got an opportunity, you have to take advantage of that.

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