Monday, October 15, 2012
A-ROD IS YANKEES ALBATROSS
$324, 416, 252. That's how much Alex Rodriquez has put into his bank account during
his 19-year Major League Career. He is owed another $114 million by the New York
Yankees over the next five years. A-Rod is now to the Yankees what Carl Crawford was to
the Boston Red Sox: an Albatross.
But there are two big differences. One, Crawford at 31, still has some life in his baseball
body while A-Rod has been breaking down for the last two years and his bat speed
is slower than molasses in the winter. Two, the Yankees will never be able to find a
team dumb enough like the Dodgers to eat the remaining $114 million on his contract.
In short, the Yankees are screwed. And so is A-Rod. For the next five years, the Yankees
will have to deal with mega-star who has broken down before their very eyes. He is aging
faster than Benjamin Button, only problem, he's not going in reverse. A-Rod has missed
more than 100 games over the last two years due to a variety of injuries, many of which
could be the result of prolonged steriod use. During the Steroid Era, players would pump
cheat into their bodies to extend their career and compile their stats. Barry Bonds hit 278
home runs AFTER the age of 37. Roger Clemens won 101 games and two Cy Young
Awards after the age of 38. That's insane and since tougher steroid testing, stats like
those in the latter part of a player's career will most likely never be seen again.
Trouble for the Yankees, they re-upped with A-Rod for another $275 million without adding
the whole steriod thing into the equation. General Manager Brian Cashman had it all figured
out and didn't want to re-sign A-Rod, but he was overruled by overzealous owners (Hank and
Hal Steinbrenner) who had dollar signs in their eyes, thinking A-Rod's run to the home run
record would mean more ticket sales, higher ratings, and more merchandise dollars. Sad
thing is, the home run record means absolutely nothing these days. Once the most hallowed
mark in all of sports, it has become meaningless, thanks to PED's. The re-signing of A-Rod
makes the Red Sox acquisition of Crawford look like a prudent move.
When it's all said and done, A-Rod will have made nearly a half-a-billion dollars playing
baseball. Think about that. $500 million. Antonie Walker would have trouble blowing that
fortune. However, with his remarkably quick decline, A-Rod's baseball life that he once
knew, is over. Playing under the world's most intense microscope, every move will be
analyzed and criticized. Fans have unloaded on his inability to come through in the
post-season where he has become an automatic out. In the past week, A-Rod has been
pinch-hit for and benched in favor of Eric Chavez. Once the best player in the game,
A-Rod was riding the pine as some guy name Chavez batted ninth in his place.
The intensity and criticism increases with every weak swing and at-bat, where he is
clearly overmatched. If the Yankees make a quick exit from the ALCS, it will be A-Rod
who will get blamed. The burning question in the off-season will be, "What can the
Yankees do with A-Rod?" The answer is absolutely nothing. He is the albatross hanging
around their necks. They can't trade him, release him, or eat the last $114 million on
Can A-Rod rebound next year? Absolutely. David Ortiz of the Red Sox somehow
rejuvenated his career at the age of the 35, or whatever age he truly is. A-Rod may
go to his good friend in the Dominican in the off-season to get some of the same
"vitamins" that helped Big Papi somehow regain his bat speed. It can happen. But
A-Rod is going to need more than a new workout regime or some high-performance
He could use some good therapy from Dr. Phil. The guy is so twisted
mentally that a high school pitcher can throw three 85-mile hour fastballs down the
middle of the plate and A-Rod wouldn't be able to touch them. His confidence is broken
and so is his body. And things will only get worse as A-Rod tries to justify the remaining
$114 million on his contract with younger players coming up who are trying to take
his job. It will get ugly, that's for sure.
Babe Ruth couldn't ride off into the sunset at the end of his spectacular career. He got
booed and criticized as he tried to stretch out his time in the game. A-Rod appears
headed for the same fate. At least, he'll have $500 million to help soothe the pain.