Alex Rodriguez finally returned to the Yankee lineup on Monday night in an 8-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox. He hit the ball hard a few times and ended up with a 1-4 day at the plate. The real story is that he has received an 211 game suspension from Major League Baseball and has appealed it. Should he stay healthy, it is very likely that A-Rod can play out the regular season and playoffs (if a miracle occurs).
    Every man deserves his day in court, so I won’t kill Alex for appealing his suspension. To be honest he would be stupid not to fight it, because the worst that can happen is the suspension stays the same. A 211 game suspension is an absolute killer blow at his age. He would return in 2015 as a 40 year old with 2 bad hips, 2 bad knees and 2 years away from the big leagues. He would most likely embarrass himself in Spring Training and after the Yankees inevitably buy him out that would be the end of it. The appeal gives Alex the chance to play out his final games in the Majors at age 38 with at least some gas left in the tank. I’ve watched all his recent interviews and press conferences, it looks to me that Alex has made peace with the situation and knows that his playing career is basically over. He just wants to live his final days as a major leaguer now, instead of in 2015 in spring training getting struck out by pitchers half his age.
     Alex loves the game of baseball more than anything, so much that he knowingly cheated to make himself the best. He is guilty of using PEDs on multiple occasions and deserves whatever punishment comes his way. Major League Baseball wouldn’t issue this type of suspension without overwhelming evidence. None of the other players involved with Tony Bosch tried to fight their suspensions the way A-Rod did, they just accepted their guilt.
    Selig not using his “integrity of the game” clause is the only reason A-Rod will ever take the field in the Majors. I feel that assuming A-Rod is guilty (he is), the situation worked itself out in the best way it could for him. First of all, he isn’t banned for life, so he can still be voted into the Hall of Fame and his contract still remains on the Yankee payroll. He is able to play out his final games while still in playing shape and he will still have a chance to come back at age 40. Knowing his love for baseball and his propensity for never leaving money on the table, that comeback attempt is going to happen in 2015. Brian Cashman will approach A-Rod and his agent with a contract buyout 10 minutes later.
    As a die-hard Yankee fan, it concerns me to see the team about to fall into the same trap with Robinson Cano. He is the only star player they have left who stays healthy and has 3+ years of solid baseball left in him. The problem is, even he is on the wrong side of 30 and he isn’t necissarily  getting better. He is hitting under .300 for the season, and hasn’t done that since 2008. With attendance numbers falling rapidly, the Yankee brass will feel that Cano needs to be signed under any circumstance. Without him, who would the fans come to see? I’m afraid they are going to give him that huge 8 year deal that they will regret by year 4, much like the A-Rod contract. I want Cano to retire a Yankee, but I want him at the right price. Hopefully George not being around to overrule Cashman turns out to be a good thing.
    While all of this goes on, two of the greatest Yankees to ever don the pinstripes are on their last legs and nobody seems to bat an eyelash. Jeter and Rivera are the definition of class, and have never done a thing to tarnish the Yankee name. They are both heading into the sunset but are going in two completely different ways.
    Mariano has never been anything but dominant in his career and even at age 43 he is the best closer in the league. He is still at the top of his game but is retiring at the end of the season. He is taking the Joe DiMaggio route to retirement. Meaning that just like Joe, nobody will have ever saw Rivera show any type of decline in his performance even at an old age. Making him seem like an immortal.
    Jeter is in my opinion one of the greatest Yankees of all-time, even though I may be biased because I have followed his career from the beginning. He empitomizes everything you could ever want in a baseball player on and off the field. You have heard all the accolades a million times: 5 Championships, 3000 Hits, .313 Career Average, etc. His body is completely breaking down on him this season and we know that nobody can defeat father time. He is about to be 40 and one thing we know about Jeter is that he hates to hurt his team. While I can’t put it past Jeter to come back and hit .300 as a 40 year old Shortstop, I also can sense that this may be the end of an era.

Categories: From The DougOut

2 Responses so far.

  1. Dendlich says:

    Alex is going to bring the Yankees to the Promise Land this year. This will make it 16 of 17 times since the wild card era was introduce in 1995 that the NY Yankees will make the playoffs and play the LA Dodgers in the World Series. Joe Girardi will changes his uniform number to 28 in 2014. I predict Alex will collect and additional $6 million this year by passing the Say Kid with 661 home runs by the end of this year.

  2. Jim Monaghan says:

    There is no chance the Yankees are going anywhere in the post-season, much less the World Series. You really want to count on past playoff perfromances to lift this team? His days are numbered as they have plenty of evidence to support his PED’s usage. And Joe already wears #28.

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