On where to find the best crab cakes in Baltimore
I always go to Babalu Grill or the Cheesecake Factory. Also, at Camden Yards, they serve the best soup--it's like a potato soup with crabs. My wife, Alejandra, always orders some to take home for me.
On how crabs are served in the Dominican Republic
Lots of seasoning--salt, pepper, lemon--and usually coconut milk, so you can drink the broth. One hour in a pot, high heat. Alejandra [who is from the dominican] is going to learn to cook it like that. She likes it too.
On building a stadium in his hometown of Bani in the Dominican
It's a dream come true. It has my name on it, Miguel Tejada Stadium, and a painting of me on the centerfield wall, six feet high. When I was playing in the minors, I told everybody in my hometown that i was going to do something for my neighborhood. The stadium opened in December; my winter ball team, Aguilas, against a team of Dominican major leaguers. It holds 3,000 people, and i saw everybody happy, all those kids running around, everybody laughing.
On how things have changed for Dominicans who want to play big league ball
Before [when he played on the land his stadium now occupies] we just had the dirt, no fence, no dugouts, nothing. �When I was coming up, you had to fight with what you had: broken shoes, no gloves. �Now kids have opportunities--all the major league teams have academies there because they know there is a lot of talent. �And guys like me playing in the big leagues, then bringing stuff over like gloves, balls, shoes, bats, makes it a little easier for the kids. �We're doing better.
On new teammate Sammy Sosa
He makes everybody more energized. It makes us more complete to have a guy who's hungry to win. The young ballplayers [back home] all try to be like him. He is good on the field and great off it, so players coming up have an example.
On Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro's Congressional testimony
I watched a little. They did great. They said the truth, and I'm with them.
On his first year in the U.S., playing rookie ball in oregon in '95
To learn English, I watched cartoons. I remember the people I lived with, Bobbi Naumes and her son J.P. �He was about 12, and he treated me like an older brother. I'll never forget all that family did for me. They worked a lot, so I had to cook my own food. I burned their pots once, cooking rice.
On what the O's must do to contend with the Red Sox and the Yankees
Believe in ourselves. �We have the talent. �We just need everyone to believe from the first inning to the last.
--Reported by Daniel G. Habib