NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Will Alex Rodriguez be back in the Bronx next season?
The Yankees have made a daily drama out of their lineup — and the star of New York’s rotating cast of benched millionaires has been none other than A-Rod.
Down 3-0 to the Detroit Tigers in the AL championship series, the Yankees told A-Rod to ride the pine again for Wednesday’s do-or-die Game 4. With a rainout moving the matchup to Thursday afternoon, manager Joe Girardi decided to leave him out of the lineup twice in two days for the same game.
Add A-Rod’s disappointing postseason to those of years past, sprinkle in a dose of “Flirtgate,” a dash of wild trade rumors, and you get a recipe for speculation. The sports pages Thursday morning were filled with columns about A-Rod’s future with the Yankees — or lack thereof.
“What it’s telling me now is that the Yankees are done with him,” said WFAN co-host Boomer Esiason. “They have basically had it with the antics and everything else. There’s gotta be other stuff going on behind the scenes.”
Craig Carton, Esiason’s radio partner, called the situation a “car wreck.”
“This is a franchise that is as IBM and Watergate and starched-shirt as any franchise that has ever been created,” said Carton. “And they are so fed up with Alex Rodriguez that they have now turned this entire postseason into a circus.
“And that’s what it is.”
A-Rod has had a nightmarish 2012 postseason, going 3 for 23 with 12 strikeouts. On Wednesday, general manager Brian Cashman was forced to refute a report from Keith Olbermann, which stated the Yankees have had discussions with the Marlins about sending Rodriguez — and most of his remaining $114 million guaranteed — to Miami.
Rodriguez’s time in New York has been marred by incidents on the field — who could forget the infamous swat at first base in Game 6 of the 2004 ALCS? — and reports of poor judgment off it.
It all married in a big, steaming pot after Game 1 of the ALCS, when A-Rod, pulled late for pinch-hitter Eric Chavez, reportedly split his attention between the on-field action and 33-year-old Australian bikini model Kyna Treacy, who was sitting behind the home dugout.
Carton said A-Rod “embarrassed the uniform” — and at Yankee Stadium, that’s a big no-no. It just may have been his ticket out of town.
“Diehard, old-school Yankees fans never, ever appreciated or wanted Alex Rodriguez,” Carton said. “‘Cause he was never Derek Jeter.”
If he’s dealt, it’ll be on his terms. A-Rod has a full no-trade clause in his contract.
“I love the Yankees. I love this organization,” he said Wednesday. “My focus right now is to help this team come together and win a game. Do not allow all this negativity and questions and gossip stuff or this crap or that crap, let’s just focus on winning a game and go from there. … What I will tell you is I hope nothing is going on like that at this point because our only focus, from top to bottom, is to win a baseball game right now.”
Do you want A-Rod back next season? Make your case in the comments below!