Jeff Allison grew up in Peabody and was the 16th overall pick in the 2003 MLB Draft by the Florida Marlins. His story of losing everything due to drug abuse, and eventually his career, is well-documented. He speaks at local high schools about the travails with drugs.
I have a lot of memories of Pedro, but the thing that strikes at me the most was that he was always dominant. I remember when he was with the Montreal Expos, with the jerry curls in his hair, throwing it 95 miles per hour by people. And then his breaking stuff was unhittable. But his best pitch might have been his changeup. It was special. I was 15 or 16 when I wanted to model myself after Pedro. He was a 95-96 miles per hour guy, but as the game went on he would throw it harder. I remember the great game he pitched at Yankee Stadium when the last pitch was 97 miles per hour. I always wanted to be stronger later in games like that. Pedro Martinez was the best I ever saw.