Darryl Strawberry Encourages Fan To Stay Sober

By Lindsey Weedston 04/26/19

The former baseball star has been sober since 2003. 

Image: 
Darryl Strawberry
Photo via YouTube

A fan approached former Mets right-fielder Darryl Strawberry in a sports bar Saturday to share that they had been sober for a year, according to a Page Six source. Strawberry, who is also in recovery, encouraged the fan, saying: “Always remember to do it for yourself.”

Darryl Strawberry enjoyed a long and decorated baseball career, helping get the Mets to the World Series in 1986 and being voted to the All-Star game eight times in a row. However, both his career and personal life were hampered by multiple addictions that led to legal troubles. He also had an extended battle with colon cancer throughout the 1990s.

Now 57, Strawberry has been outspoken about his addiction issues. He was suspended from playing baseball three times for using cocaine and had a hard time in recovery, repeatedly relapsing and breaking his probation until he was sentenced to 22 months in prison in 2002.

"Drug addiction is very powerful," Strawberry said, according to AL.com. "Drugs have been around sports forever and players have done them forever. I wasn't the first one... there were a lot of other players who did them too. We were high-profile and there was more recognition on us because of the fall of who we were—such great talents at such a young age."

In 2017, a book detailing the life of the former slugger—Don't Give Up On Me: Shedding Light on Addiction with Darryl Strawberrywas released.

According to Sports Illustrated, the text reveals that Strawberry also struggled with sex addiction, sometimes having sex between innings during his baseball games.

"I would go between innings, and stuff like that and run back and have a little party going on," he said while promoting the book on The Dr. Oz Show. "You know, I thought it was pretty cool. That was just the addiction, the drive."

Today, Strawberry has embraced his faith and serves as a minister when he’s not touring the U.S. to speak on the issue of addiction disorders. He also runs a foundation for autistic children, The Darryl Strawberry Foundation, with his wife, Tracy. The two met at a drug recovery convention and married in 2006.

Plus, he opened the Darryl Strawberry Recovery Center in St. Cloud, Florida in 2014. The former Yankee defended shortstop Alex Rodriguez, who was being accused of steroid abuse, by pointing out that steroids can be addictive.

"You can get addicted to steroids just like any other drug,” Strawberry said. "A drug is a drug, and it's unfortunate drugs have been around sports forever. Look at some of the great players in the Hall of Fame. Who are they kidding? In their time and era, they did drugs. Greenies and amphetamines are drugs, too."

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Lindsey Weedston is a Seattle area writer focused on mental health and addiction, politics, human rights, and various social issues. Her work has appeared in The Establishment, Ravishly, ThinkProgress, Little Things, Yes! Magazine, and others. You can find her daily writings at NotSorryFeminism.com. Twitter: https://twitter.com/LindseyWeedston

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