LADY AT THE BAT: Yankees Have A Successful Weekend In More Ways Than One

Monday, August 8, 2016

Yankees Have A Successful Weekend In More Ways Than One

I’ve understood precious little about the Yankees relationship / treatment of Alex Rodriguez. I was ambivalent about the trade that put him in pinstripes (more because I would miss Alfonso Soriano than any true opinion about Rodriguez) and beyond puzzled that they re-signed him after the 2007 season or didn’t release him prior to the 2015 season.

So the fact that I don’t understand why the Yankees would allow him to hold a press conference to announce his retirement (mere hours before the Yankees were out trying to win a series no less) is, perhaps, no surprise. If he wants to hold a press conference lamenting his release, let him do it on his own time and his own dime. And lets be clear. He is being released. Rodriguez is, of course, retiring only after that release so he will get every cent of the money owed to him this year as well as next. They should have just released him and that would have been that.

In an attempt to recoup some of that investment, he will work for the Yankees as a special advisor and instructor through 2017.

Rodriguez has been said to be a fantastic and enthusiastic teacher and an avid student of the game. There is, undeniably, a thing or two he can teach a young player trying to make it to the big leagues, not an insignificant contribution, considering the sacrifices the Yankees have recently made to get their farm system to top five status.

All the same, to me, there is something very distasteful about a multiple time steroid user, who sued the Yankees and his own union to put on a show to fight allegations that were true all along, getting to work within that organization and teach other young players how to grow into major leaguers. Jorge Mateo, the Yankees second best SS prospect, was recently suspended for two weeks for his off field behavior. It’s clear the Yankees feel he still has some growing to do. Well, Rodriguez didn’t “grow up” until 2015, if he has at all, a claim of which I am exceedingly skeptical, so is he really the right person to take on that advisory role?

As much as I regret the Yankees decision to continually associate with a such a player, I don’t think they would purposefully jeopardize the future of the organization just so the money on Rodriguez’s 2017 contract isn’t a total loss. I will give them the benefit of the doubt that they know Rodriguez better than I ever will, and that they are comfortable that the lessons he will impart will be positive ones.

For me, I’m just glad that, after Friday’s game, I don’t have to feel that personal discomfort of having to cheer for plays (I’ve long since stopped cheering for the player, although I’ve never booed him) that result from a player who has disgraced the New York Yankees uniform.

It’s the end of an era, for sure. One I wish had ended much sooner and at much less cost to the Yankees, both to their reputation and to their finances. It’s time to move on. It is time to focus on just the baseball.

And with the Yankees having a nice weekend, taking 2 of 3 against the A.L. Central leading team from Cleveland, before going through a nine game stretch through the still winnable (no, I haven’t conceded anything yet) A.L. East, that will be a welcome thing.

Way to cut the cord Yankees. It could have been done better, but better late than never.

Lest we forget... Congratulations to Mark Teixeira, who announced his retirement Friday, effective at the end of this season. As he, himself said, some of what he did wasn't always enough, but he left Yankees fans with some great memories. Thanks, Teix.--BP


Section 36 said...

Be interesting to see if his new position is a real job or just in name only so he doesn't try and play somewhere else on their dime.

Bernadette Pasley said...

Brian Cashman already said he could play somewhere else if he wants.