While discussing his toe woes, the Mets’ Pedro Martinez has managed to breathe new life into one of the off-season’s least interesting debates. From Newsday’s Ken Davidoff.

“Alex is American because he was born in the United States, but after what Mike Piazza — a future Hall of Famer — did, who will be playing for Italy, and Nomar Garciaparra, who will be playing for Mexico, he had an excuse to do the same with the Dominican Republic,” said Martinez, who intends to pitch for his native Dominican Republic. Martinez’s statements were spoken to the Dominican-based television network Color Vision. ESPN.com first reported of the interview here.

“Now Alex must prepare for the nasty comments that will arise in the Bronx, where almost half of the citizens are Latino and purely Dominican,” Martinez said. “In fact, when Alex gets [to the Dominican Republic] it’s possible that not even the reporters will be here to welcome him.”

I’m still waiting for Chris Russo to imply that Rodriguez’ inclusion on Team USA is a cynical attempt to market to Americans.