Don’t Be An Asshole, A-Rod

A-Rod,

arod

By Keith Allison from Baltimore, USA (Alex Rodriguez) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Baseball has been good to you. The New York Yankees have been good to you. You’ve made more money in your tainted career than any other baseball player – by a large margin… Yet, you insist on shitting on the the same people and organizations who made you.

Frankly, I don’t care that you did performance enhancing drugs. I assume that most of the good players from your era did.

I get it – you just wanted to get an edge over the competition. You wanted to hit more home runs. You wanted to break records. You wanted to make more money. Who wouldn’t want that? I’m okay with all of that.

What I don’t understand is your defensive tactics. You’ve been busted, but instead of taking it like a man, you’re using the Lance Armstrong Defense.

You’re suing Major League Baseball, the Commissioner of Baseball, a New York hospital, and the Yankee’s Doctors?!

I have low expectations for professional athletes. I don’t expect you to be role models. I don’t expect you to be superheroes. All I want you to do is come out and be your best on the field. Do whatever you want in your personal life – it’s not my business.

But I do have one rule for people – don’t be an asshole. It’s really easy to be an All Star in my league. All you have to do is act like a decent human being. When you start suing the people who paid for your mansion, in an attempt to save face, you’re an asshole.

Unfortunately, you’ll never read this post, or heed this advice. You and Lance Armstrong are cut from the same cloth. Your egos were on steroids long before you ever stuck a needle in your body.

I’m just trying to help you out. Less than a year ago Lance Armstrong faced the same fate. He was under fire for using PEDs, but instead of facing the facts, and admitting to his mistakes, he insisted on protecting his image, and torching anybody that didn’t stick to the narrative.

How did that turn out for Lance? It was a year ago (this month) that all of his sponsors abandoned him. Two months later he was on Oprah doing his predictable confession and apology. His sport, the media, and his own charity cast him out. Do you really want to go that route?

You don’t have to go down like that. Just go away. Take your money and your memories and fade out. Don’t try to save face. Don’t try and prove that you’re right. You have nothing to gain. You’ve already lost all respect and credibility. You’ll never be in the hall of fame. It’s over.

Can the Yankees Make the Playoffs?

Yankees vs. Angels

Yankees vs. Angels Wednesday, August, 14 2013

In my last post, I wrote about the Yankees salvaging the season by not loosing to bad teams, and beating the RedSox. But the way the Yankees are playing right now, it looks like they might have a legitimate run at the Wild Card.

The front office doesn’t look like they’re ready to give up on this season yet. They’re still making moves to put the Yankees in contention for the playoffs. By adding Alfonso Soriano and Mark Reynolds to the lineup this Summer, the Yankees are set to finish the season strong.

The two big questions are:

1. When will Derek Jeter return? A lot of baseball analysts are suggesting his season is done. If the Yankees are out of contention it doesn’t make much difference, but if they make a playoff run, having the Captain back in the lineup will be paramount.

2. How long will A-Rod be in the lineup? His situation is precarious. Joe Girardi doesn’t have a problem playing him, but MLB wants him out. His posturing can only by him so much time. Bud Selig is going to bring the hammer down sooner than later. When he does, what impact will that have on the Yankees, who are struggling to get run production this year?

My 2013 Trip to Yankee Stadium

Lucky for me, there’s often a business conference in NYC during the Yankees season. This has made it easy for me to make an annual trip to Yankee Stadium nearly ever year since 2007.

I had great seats to the Yankees/Angels game last week – third base line (about 20 rows up). It was fun watching them destroy Jered Weaver.

Alfonso Soriano is Hot

The Yankees didn’t waste any time getting on the board. They had 2 outs at the bottom of the first, but then managed to load up the bases. Alfonso Soriano walked up to the plate, and dared Weaver to pitch to him. Weaver must not have heard that Soriano knocked out 2 home runs in the previous game, otherwise, he would have walked him. Instead of walking him, and sending 1 guy home, he threw a pitch that resulted in a grand slam.

This was my first (live) major league grand slam! It couldn’t have worked out any better – my team, at home.

Soriano’s next at bat was another home run. He hit a double later in the game. The guy is on fire right now.

A-Rod Still (Mostly) Loved in New York

I didn’t know what to expect when A-Rod stepped up to the plate. I’ve never been a big fan of A-Rod. The PED controversy, combined with (allegedly) selling out other players, has made me like him even less. In fact, I chuckled when I read this, because it sums up how a lot of Yankees fans feel about A-Rod:

A-Rod PED Controversy

People had problems with A-Rod long before he was accused of using steroids.

When he stepped up to the plate, I expected a cold reception, but to my surprise more than half the fans cheered him on. It was fun to see the mixed reaction among fans. There were people in front of me jeering, and others were cheering. When A-Rod got a hit, everybody seemed to forget his problems. When he was called out, the boos were definitely louder.

I don’t care how well he plays – I’m not going to cheer for him again.

The Yankees that I Use to Know

I became a Yankees fan in the late 80’s. Back then there was little to celebrate. They had a few star players on their roster during the late 80s and early 90s, but the best finish they had from 1987-1992 was 4th place.

Back then there were only two divisions in each league, with 7 teams each (AL East/West  and NL East/West) so 4th place was a middle of the road performance. In 1990 they hit rock bottom and finished last in the division. To make matters worse, the RedSox won the division that year. The stretch from 1982-1993 was arguably the worst in Yankees history (in the post Babe Ruth era).

I became a fan when there was nothing to celebrate – except their winning legacy. It was fun to cheer on All Stars like Don Mattingly, Willie Randolph, Rickey Henderson, and Dave Righetti, but team performance is far more important than any individual player’s stats – just ask any Cleveland Cavaliers fan.

2013 reminds me of when I first became a Yankees fan. There’s not a lot of hope left this season. With an aging roster and injuries holding the team back, it’s hard to imagine them getting hot and making the playoffs. My expectations are low. I just want to see them give the Red Sox a hard time, not get swept by shitty teams, and see Mo go out on top in Houston at the end of the season.

No doubt the Yankees have a tough road ahead, but they will recover and win another World Series. Seasons like this give me a little perspective – what would it be like if I were a Cubs fan? 105 years without a World Series is a lot harder to deal with than a few bad years.

Onward.

Time for the Yankees to Spend Less and Get More

It’s hard to watch the Yankees sink to the bottom of the AL East. Plagued with injuries to aging stars and a big payroll, it’s hard to imagine the Yankees pulling out of this tailspin in 2013.

Since 1995, the Yankees have won the AL East 13 times, and the Wild Card 4 times. That’s 17 playoff appearances in 18 years. It hasn’t sucked being a Yankees fan over the last 2 decades.  [Read more…]

A-Roid

Alex Rodriguez

A-Roid

When the Yankees signed a 10 year/$275 million contract extension with A-Roid in 2007, I cringed. He was just coming off his third MVP award, and everybody knew the Yankees would have to write a big check to retain him.  [Read more…]

Yankees vs. Rangers Game 4

After a couple of tough losses, it was nice to see the Yankees split the series with the Rangers. The Yankee’s pitchers seem to be getting the job done, but the bats are still sleeping.

Injuries have plagued the Yanks since the ALCS last year. Run production has been sub par with Jeter, Tex, and A-Rod out of the line up. In any other division, the Yanks might be able to skate by, but in the the always-competitive AL East it’s only good enough for 4th place.

When I looked at the pitching match up this morning, I knew the Yankees had a good chance to win. Baseball is all about pitching match ups, and Holland’s record against the Yankees is horrible. We only scored two runs, but it was enough to get the job done.

As we entered the bottom of the 8th, the anticipation for Mo to close it out started building. Even Texas fans gave up, and wanted to see Mo close it out. When Mo came out at the bottom of the 9th, everyone in the stadium stood up and cheered him on. At that point, Ranger’s fans knew it was over. Mo has only lost 60 games in his professional career, and 61 wasn’t going to happen today.

Mariano Rivera

Mo 42

Watching Mo and the Yanks win today made up for yesterday’s loss. We had a chance to catch Mo outside the stadium last night. We could have pushed for a picture or autograph, but out of respect, we didn’t press it, opting to take a few long distance shots with our iPhones.

My First Trip to Old Yankee Stadium

old-yankee-stadium

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia User Kjetil_r

It was fun reading Shawn’s post about his first Yankees “home” game. It inspired me to write my own. One of the downsides of growing up in Utah is that there’s no professional baseball. The closest major league stadium is in Denver – 500 miles away. Before the Rockies became a team in 1993, the closest baseball stadium for me was in Los Angeles. [Read more…]

How I Became a Yankees Fan

yankees monument park

Me at Yankee Stadium in 2011.

As a Utah native, now living in Texas, I often get asked how I became a Yankee fan. To get the full story I have to rewind back to 1987.

When I was 9, my favorite sport was backyard wiffle ball. My love for wiffle ball eventually morphed into a love of baseball. All of my neighborhood friends played little league baseball, so I decided to give it a shot when I turned 10.

All of my friends were on the Yankees little league team, so naturally I wanted to be part of the “Yankees Organization”. I went to tryouts, and through a little coaxing, was able to land on their roster. [Read more…]

Mo is the 2013 All Star Game MVP

Mariano Rivera 2013 All Star MVP

Mo is the 2013 All Star MVP

Baseball’s all time saves leader, was the 2013 All Star Game MVP. It was another spectacular outing for Mo… 3 batters up, 3 batters down.

It’s been fun watching Mo’s farewell tour this year. I get chills down my spine every time I see the Yankees post videos of him on Instagram walking out of the bullpen. I’m excited to see him pitch in Dallas next week!

If you haven’t read it yet, you need to check out this NY Times article on his phenomenal stats.

#ICON

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