Choose Your Own A-Rod Adventure

As genre pieces go, Seth Mnookin’s A-Rod profile for next month’s Men’s Vogue breaks very little with A-Rodology convention. Is there the requisite mention of A-Rod’s complicated relationship with former buddy Derek Jeter? Yes. How about a note or two about A-Rod’s image issue? Yep. Is it sprinkled with a few details you might not have known about the universe’s best player (ahem)? Sure. I guess I didn’t know that early in his career, ice cream was A-Rod’s whiskey and coke. Or that he likes art a lot.

Mnookin did get a couple of quotations from the star about the opt-out
moment. A-Rod claims he was stunned to hear it reported during the
World Series telecast. This is clearly a lie. A-Rod was sitting
cross-legged contemplating a bust of Dale Carnegie while Gerhard
Richter painstakingly limned the candle-lit scene. In other words, no
television was on in the Rodriguez mansion at that time. Instead the
dulcet sounds of Linkin Park (are they still together? And who were
they anyway? And why?) filled the cold rooms–frozen by the vats of
Breyers Ice Cream stored directly underneath in the vast underground
bunker that also houses A-Rod’s Hall-of-Mirrors. Why does A-Rod have
these mirrors? The convention demands that we use metaphors to
illustrate his image thingy problem.

Now wasn’t that paragraph a lot more fun than what Mnookin, who is an
actual talented and paid writer (unlike me, who sits at home again
recovering from some unknown, perhaps medical-paradigm-shifting virus
picked up from working in New York City’s public schools), gave us? My
point is that if you’re going to work within this tired genre–and
don’t we agree? It’s more or less dead–you might as well have fun
with it. Do something crazy. I liked Tom Verducci’s article a couple
years ago, which included the detail that Sox executives found A-Rod
impeccably dressed for their 2am negotiations. This creeped them out,
perhaps justifiably. But it also provided this reader with the exciting
possibility that A-Rod is an actual super hero, or that, even more
amazingly, he finds the whole concept of sleeping beneath him.

People, do you hear what I’m screaming here! The Choose-Your-Own-Adventure genre is a thing of the past, never to be revived. If we don’t start rethinking the A-Rodology tradition, a similar fate awaits. And then we’re left with what? Articles about what the guy does on the field? For shame.

31 comments… add one
  • I know a guy from the Yankees (desk job) and it is a house divided over Arod. Some people were more than happy to see him walk after being an underperforming primadonna headcase, while others felt that winning spirit was in there somewhere and he was too talented not to eventually win.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF March 18, 2008, 11:46 am
  • I think last season solidified ARod as a “real Yankee” in my mind. The guy is undoubtedly the best player in baseball and with all that talent and $$$ comes certain expectations. He is a little weird for sure but what big-name famous athlete/actor/musician isn’t? It’s hard to judge a guy until you walk in his shoes and none of us ever will. I just hope that now that he is a Yankee for the rest of his career, he will be accepted and cheered as such!

    krueg March 18, 2008, 11:54 am
  • If there are really people in the Yankees FO who think that A-Rod is an underperformer, they should be fired, like immediately.

    Steve March 18, 2008, 1:43 pm
  • at the end of a long ’07 season our superhero A-rod is confronted with choices…….
    If A-rod decides to;
    A) tell the yankees he is opting out of his contract. (turn to pg. 1)
    B) in a moment of self indulgence interrupts the WS. (turn to pg. 1)
    C) attempt to show contrition while retaining Boras. (turn to pg. 1)
    D) receives a handsome payday for both him and Boras. (turn to pg. 1)
    Oh no, we’re back to where we started.

    sf rod March 18, 2008, 1:51 pm
  • “underperforming”
    Huh? I’m with Steve on this one, those people should be fired because that pure idiocy.

    LocklandSF March 18, 2008, 2:51 pm
  • sf rod: ARod didn’t release the info about the opt-out, Boras did.

    krueg March 18, 2008, 3:00 pm
  • “Alex made the decision today,” Boras said. “I thought we should notify the club.” 10/28/07

    sf rod March 18, 2008, 3:20 pm
  • “Alex made the decision today,” Boras said. “I thought we should notify the club.” 10/28/07
    Exactly…Boras notified the media/Yankees, not ARod.

    krueg March 18, 2008, 3:24 pm
  • “I thought we should notify the club.”

    sf rod March 18, 2008, 3:28 pm
  • ha-ha! I love how people having issues with ‘underperforming’ but not ‘primadonna headcase’!

    no sleep til brooklyn SF March 18, 2008, 3:46 pm
  • Yeah, no way can Arod get a pass on when the press was notified, Boras works for Arod, his actions on Arod’s behalf are Arod’s equally.

    LocklandSF March 18, 2008, 4:02 pm
  • “I thought we should notify the club.”
    BORAS thought (and did) notify the media, not just the Yankees. I thought it was pretty much fact that ARod had nothing to do with the leak to the press. Just haters hating at this point I guess. So juvenile.

    krueg March 18, 2008, 4:05 pm
  • Kreug, I have an agent for my job and if my agent pulled something like that without notifying me first- I would fire him. It would jeopardize my contract that’s already in place for one that doesn’t exist. That’s unprofessional to say the very least.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF March 18, 2008, 4:14 pm
  • “BORAS thought (and did) notify the media” as per a-rods request and as a representative of a-rod. krueg, i’m not trying to start anything here, but these are the facts. i for one am very happy a-rod is still with the yanks, whether he wants to be there or not. it’s an unquantifiable aspect of the rivalry.
    geez, i thought i was making a cute Choose Your Own Adventure, but that’s probably juvenile too.

    sf rod March 18, 2008, 4:29 pm
  • Yeah, this isn’t hating in any way, it’s the reality. Arod is responsible for the actions of the people he employs who are acting on his behalf, period.
    Also, I’m not entirely buying the story that he didn’t know what Boras was up to, but it doesn’t matter either way.

    LocklandSF March 18, 2008, 5:09 pm
  • SF rod: Show me where he requested his opt-out be made public during the WS? I have never read that…that’s my point. It’s yet another thinly veiled shot at ARod. “Cute” or not, at least be honest.
    NSTB: Thus the falling out with Boras. ARod was pissed that Boras did what he did. (not the opt out, but the going public)

    krueg March 18, 2008, 5:17 pm
  • Lock: ARod isn’t responsible for anyone’s actions but his own.

    krueg March 18, 2008, 5:21 pm
  • Nobody escapes blame here, I think that’s the lesson. Players don’t have Boras as their agent because he’s the pinnacle of decorum, so when A-Rod notifies Boras that he’s opting out, and if he does so without qualifying how the Yankees and the rest of the baseball world should be notified (“Scott, I want you to send Cash a note from my special private account, and also, NO CALLING THE NETWORKS, OK?!”), it’s probably understood that Boras can, at that point, do whatever he feels is necessary to strengthen his/their position.
    A-Rod isn’t to blame for the call that Boras made specifically, but he’s not without culpability; they were/are teammates, for better or for worse. All of a sudden Scott Boras has done something that suprises A-Rod, that makes him shudder? Seriously? That’s nearly impossible to believe, based on Boras’ history.
    But isn’t this a tired subject, anyhow?

    SF March 18, 2008, 5:57 pm
  • I just got in from a long day of work, and I have to say I’m a bit disappointed that this subject matter is still getting play, even here, while no one says anything about the game at VT. I guess negativity gets more interest than positivity. Sad really.

    A YF March 18, 2008, 6:05 pm
  • I agree, it is a tired subject, but it’s absurd for anyone to say that Arod isn’t at least party responsible, simply absurd.

    LocklandSF March 18, 2008, 6:11 pm
  • Guys – Mostly I lurk but I have a favor to ask. I remember that some of you (but not which of you) are baseball coaches. My son is 7 and playing at the coach pitch level. His coach is trying to train them away from an underhanded catch on pop flies. I don’t have any problem with this, having no real opinion on the subject, but the kids keep asking me why and I have no answer. Can anyone tell me why an overhand catch is better on a pop fly than an underhand catch?

    soxgirl March 18, 2008, 7:10 pm
  • alright, alright. already. i’m sure a-rods new agent would never do something as disgraceful and so clearly against his clients wishes as Boras did.
    soxgirl- it’s a matter of setting yourself up to transition the ball to the throwing hand as well as to set up to make the throw.

    sf rod March 18, 2008, 8:07 pm
  • arod’s clearly a liar and a cheat, so of course he knew what boras was going to do including the timing of it…there, i said it…does that make you soxfans happy?…not sure if arod officially fired boras, but he did kick him under the bus and ask him to butt out of the conversations with the yanks…i’m sure the money will assuage his bruised ego…

    dc March 18, 2008, 9:23 pm
  • Clearly, A-Rod is a classless, horrible person and a detriment to the game. In fact, I don’t see how it can be argued that A-Rod simply told Boras to tell all the media he was opting out right before the World Series ended. Surely, SURELY, Scott Boras would not have acted of his own accord. Didn’t you know, he needs A-Rod’s permission to do ANYthing! Even negotiate with other players. Yup. A-Rod owns a contract on Scott Boras’ life. If Scott Boras picked the most inappropriate time to announce to the media, it’s only because A-Rod told him to. Or, um, didn’t tell him not to. Right.
    Anyway, you can call it a dog-and-pony show, or do whatever you want, but how about the fact that A-Rod was…uh, angry at Boras for dealing with the situation so poorly? You really, REALLY blame Rodriguez for NOT saying the obvious to his agent who is supposedly the best at what he does?
    There are two situations here. Either Rodriguez explicitly told Boras to tell the media he’s opting out, precisely before the World Series ended, or he didn’t, and Boras, being the blowhard and egotist that he is, decides to take it upon himself to do something A-Rod didn’t tell him to do, but Boras thought was in his ‘best interests’. Which is the more likely case?
    Also, A-Rod did take responsibility. He has said, repeatedly, that he feels embarrassed by the entire situation. But clearly, it wasn’t actually his doing.

    AndrewYF March 18, 2008, 10:20 pm
  • Also, sorry, but seriously? You REALLY blame A-Rod for NOT telling Boras explicitly how to handle the situation? Did A-Rod know that Boras had become such an incompetent boob that he thought embarrassing A-Rod was best for him? After years and years of skillful agent-ing, A-Rod now has to tell Boras how to do his job? Sorry, but the timing of the announcement is SOLELY on Boras.

    AndrewYF March 18, 2008, 10:26 pm
  • boras is still his rep, which tells you all you need to know about a-rods contrition. the bus boras was thrown under was made of gold.
    if the “boras acted on his own” defense is the one ya’ll are sticking to, so be it. boris is a shrewd negotiator willing to employ some contemptible tactics, and in this case he was shrewd on behalf of a-rod. both the richer for it. if a-rod doesn’t give the opt-out-a-ok, boras isn’t giving a 7th inning press conference. that’s his job, one that a-rod pays him to do. this is the deal you sign to roll with scott and you know that going into it.
    i’ll drop it.

    sf rod March 19, 2008, 6:07 am
  • i don’t think anyone’s arguing that arod and boras discussed and agreed to proceed with the opt-out…can’t say as i blame him…however, to insist that there’s no possible way arod wasn’t aware of boras’ plan for timing the announcement, which was really more like a “leak” than an official proclamation is unfair, and ignores boras’ dark side…if you can set your bad feelings for arod aside for a minute [his not becoming a sox was really your mgmt’s fault for cheaping out, so you should save your angst for them], you might see the possibility for an alternative scenario besides the conspiracy theory…it could have happened either way is all i’m saying, and soxfans insistence that it could have only happened one way exposes a lack of objectivity…

    dc March 19, 2008, 7:29 am
  • You guy refuse to get this, it doesn’t matter if Arod knew or not, Boras works for Arod, Arod is responsible for Bora’s actions when he’s acting on Arod’s behalf, period.
    I’m just saying there is chance that Arod was aware of it.
    Also, after the nationwide backlash regarding the bonehead move, of course Arod was going to throw Boras under the bus and claim he had no idea and say he was embarrassed by the situation. He absolutely had to say those things. However, it is possible that Arod and Boras wrongly estimated what the reaction would be to the timing.

    LocklandSF March 19, 2008, 9:29 am
  • Lock: I get it…Boras did something that ARod knew nothing about. When he found out he took steps to rectify the situation. He did everything but fire Boras. Would you fire someone who had made you the highest paid athlete in the world for one mistake, even one as huge as this??? It’s not ARod’s fault and now everything is cool in Yankee land. Now if he sat back and didn’t speak out against Boras and the situation then, yes, you would have a point. But he did, and you don’t. Rationalize it however you want but at least be honest man…you are an ARod hater.

    krueg March 19, 2008, 10:32 am
  • Get off it, I’m not an Arod hater at all, I would have welcomed him with open arms on the Red Sox, at any point.
    Here is a little FACT you refuse to accept…
    “Boras did something that ARod knew nothing about.”
    There is absolutely no way you can be certain about that, period.

    LocklandSF March 19, 2008, 11:42 am
  • No…but I can believe what ARod says and take him at his word. He says he didn’t know, I believe him and base my argument on that. What is your argument based on? Pure speculation, that’s all.
    Do you know him? Do you know his friends or family? I mean, if you have inside information to back up your claim with something other than conjecture, I would love to hear it…

    krueg March 19, 2008, 1:10 pm

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