Extension? Yes Please

Alex Rodriguez homered again today (except he didn’t; my fault (thanks for the correction Lar), misread the box; he drove in two more, which kills my lead in a sense but not my theme). It’s exciting and yet one almost has to stifle a yawn because he’s making it such a normality with the way he’s beating the ball like it owes him money. In a sense, it does, as he’s not required in any sense, except his word, to stay a Yankee after this season. It’s tough to pick a good point to dissect his destruction of opposing pitchers this season, but let’s be arbitrary and start with his last game in Toronto, right around the time when he made a public-relations faux pas that involved an attractive lady that happened to be someone other than his wife, which, if memory serves, was the first misstep ever for the high-profile superstar.

As he is new to distractions and dissections of him on field and off, one may have wondered how the native New Yorker would respond to the newfound attention. Starting with that game in Canadia on the 30th of May, ARod has appeared at the plate 64 times for 50 at-bats. He’s hit the ball 19 times, 6 of those leaving the park, some with length and height that boggles the mind. He’s driven 24 runs. There have been 12 strikeouts along with 10 walks, and he’s crossed the plate 17 times. There was talk earlier in the season by Brian Cashman that ARod had a contract, and that the option was his right to exercise. That’s true. Cashman also said that “He has a decision at the end of the year, not the Yankees,” which is true before the comma. The Yankees definitely have a decision to make and I hope they make the right one. Pay the man, like you owe him money.

45 comments… add one
  • Mostly agree, except for that he didn’t hit a HR today..

    Lar June 14, 2007, 5:57 pm
  • Thanks Lar. Misread the box. Shame.

    attackgerbil June 14, 2007, 6:00 pm
  • Ya, that Toronto game was the turning point for ARod, after the turning point in which he slumped in May..

    Lar June 14, 2007, 6:02 pm
  • I predict several more turning points throughout the season :-)

    Paul SF June 14, 2007, 6:02 pm
  • I’m curious, by the way, who else can afford ARod? At 25 mil?
    You can’t say the Yanks don’t give him enough money, though if all he wants is a few extra mil, I say give it to him. Also, there _must_ be more promotional type stuff that pads that number that he can’t get (or harder to get) otherwise.
    And you can’t say that the Yanks don’t give him a chance to win a ring every year..

    Lar June 14, 2007, 6:04 pm
  • And while the media might be easier elsewhere (see Randy Johnson), you almost have to believe what they wrote about ARod is probably as bad as it gets.
    For some reason everyone wants to hate this guy, and in the last 4 years, they overblow everyone of his miscues (on and off the field), and if you really look at it, they really mostly amount to nothing – he’s not squeaking clean, per se, but probably as squeaking clean as you can get with cameras following you everywhere..
    As a YF, I love to have him back, and this was before this season. And maybe I’m just blinding myself to the possibilities, but it really doesn’t make sense..

    Lar June 14, 2007, 6:10 pm
  • I hope you do extend him. In postseason games he goes 12 32 .280 overall and 3 8 .275 since he’s been in NY. Not exactly Mr. October.

    jp-sf June 14, 2007, 6:12 pm
  • Be careful what you wish for.. =P

    Lar June 14, 2007, 6:14 pm
  • Ah, small sample size abounds! I’ll take the regular season dominance over 8 at bats any day, thank you very much. I just hope, for jp’s sake, that he is thoroughly being facetious about his point.

    AndrewYF June 14, 2007, 6:27 pm
  • No, actually I wasn’t being facetious…regular season dominance and awards are WAAAAAAAYYYYY different than rings. I predict that IF the Yankees win a championship with ARod on the roster, it will be despite him, not because of him.

    jp-sf June 14, 2007, 6:47 pm
  • That’s silly, jp, since it’s likely that the reason the Yankees make the postseason and have a chance at a ring is because a guy like A-Rod dominates the regular season. If he plays enough postseason games he’ll produce, it’s a fact. He’s too good.

    SF June 14, 2007, 7:08 pm
  • “I predict that IF the Yankees win a championship with ARod on the roster, it will be despite him, not because of him.”
    That’s what Pats fans were saying about Peyton Manning before he smoked their team in the AFC Championship Game.
    Look, Yankee haters and non-fans of Arod can crow all they want about “play-off choke-Rod” this, or “Slappy Mc-not-clutch” that, but the fact of the matter is that the guy is way too good not to come through at some point in his career in the play-offs. And god help opposing pitching if he is locked in and on one of his tears; whether that be some point in the future in an Angel uni, or this fall God willing in a Yankee one. The guy will make comments like jp-sf’s obselete.

    bloodyank78 June 14, 2007, 7:19 pm
  • What the hell are you basing this on, jp? 30 at bats? That’s the opposite of sense.

    AndrewYF June 14, 2007, 7:20 pm
  • Weak comparison, BY. Peyton Manning, as a QB, has far more control over a game than a random third baseman does, no matter how talented. And in those first few playoff games against the Pats, Manning totally stunk, crumbled under pressure. He came through this year, but until then he deserved the criticism – the QB is just a far more important position to it’s sport, relatively speaking.

    SF June 14, 2007, 7:22 pm
  • Here’s a small sample size:
    One SF (jp) in this thread says A-Rod is unclutch and never will be clutch.

    SF June 14, 2007, 7:24 pm
  • That was just so I could get a gratuitous shot in on the Pats ;) I’m a Charger fan, I was at the game in San Diego during the play-offs. It blew. F-the Pats.

    bloodyank78 June 14, 2007, 7:35 pm
  • I think most od us SFs have avoided the silliness about A-Rod’s postseason at-bats. Every great hitter, including Reggie Jackson, with a moderate number of postseason at bats has struggled/will struggle through some of them. The stats bear this out. LOGIC bears this out.
    If we want to argue about certain players seeming to be more clutch than others, that might be slightly different. But to pull 30 at bats out of thin air and base a player’s reputation on them is simply not smart analysis.

    Paul SF June 14, 2007, 9:02 pm
  • i’m glad that as a fan it’s fair for me to be a hypocrite, wishy-washy, and cop out from time to time…i went on record [maybe even here] but certainly with other folks that i talk baseball with, that i didn’t think i wanted arod to come back next year with the yanks…i was ready to move on…i even said that in april when he was on fire…i just felt that what comes with him is too much of a distraction even for the yankees…may’s slump just seemed to reinforce that feeling for me…his resurgence here in june has begun to erode my stance a little, but i think i’m still leaning toward saying goodbye…ag and others have made great cases for arod, and this is one where i’d love to eat a giant plate of crow, since we all agree about arod’s stature in baseball history…how could i being willing to let him walk?…don’t know, ask me tomorrow, or a month from now, and i may give you a different answer…please don’t hate me for being wishy-washy on this one…

    dc June 15, 2007, 8:17 am
  • Sorry, I misread the stats. In 35 postseason games, he has gone 6 hr 16 rbi .280 (135 at bats). Stretch that out to a full season (162 games) and he goes 27 76 .280. Not exactly his regular season numbers, are they? If he keeps playing for teams that play in the postseason will he eventually put together a good series? Absolutely. Hell, even Barry Bonds, a notoriously bad postseason hitter, hit .471 in the 2002 WS. But if past performance is indicative of future performance, he will remain a mediocre postseason performer for the remainder of his career.

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 10:40 am
  • Over the first 135 at bats of last season, Manny hit something like .250 with 3 homers. Eventually, over a larger sample he put up numbers more aligned with his career numbers. In other words, 135 ab’s is still a small sample.

    Nick-YF June 15, 2007, 10:43 am
  • Are you sure about that? By comparison, David Justice, who has appeared in the second most postseasons than anyone in history averaged 31 102 .279 in his career during the regular season. In the postseason, he averages (over 162 games) 20 91 .224.
    On the flip side of that, Derek Jeter averages 17 83 .317 in the regular season. Postseason, he would average 23 65 .314; not too far off from his regular season numbers.
    Will ARod hit in the postseason? That remains to be seen. But I’ll take Papi, Jeter, Bernie Williams or Manny before I even think about ARod.
    You guys who are so enthralled by ARod’s numbers can’t have it both ways…

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 10:54 am
  • > Will ARod hit in the postseason?
    He has. Quite potently. Just not in 2005 and 2006.
    > You guys who are so enthralled by ARod’s numbers can’t have it both ways…
    “Us guys” realize that rough outings during the last two post seasons is not enough evidence to make thoroughly misleading questions like “will ARod hit in the postseason?”

    attackgerbil June 15, 2007, 11:06 am
  • It’s not about having it both ways, JP. It’s about the vagaries of statistics and the fact that bad numbers over prolonged — but statistically insignificant stretches — tend to even out. It’s called luck and regression.
    In 72 postseason at bats, Player A had 26 hits (.361 avg), 4 HR and 11 RBI. Over a full season, that’s 28 HR and 77 RBI.
    In 60 postseason at bats, Player B had 11 hits (.183 avg), 2 HR and 5 RBI. Over a full season, that’s 17 HR and 43 RBI.
    So which player is more “clutch” in the postseason? Trick question: They’re both Alex Rodriguez!
    So did A-Rod suddenly become “unclutch” between the 2004 ALDS and ALCS? I would say an affirmative answer is simply not rational.

    Paul SF June 15, 2007, 11:12 am
  • Ok…if you say so. I wouldn’t call his numbers “potent” by any stretch. I’d call Jeter’s potent.
    It’s just like the old saying – you can lead a horse to water, but can’t make him jump off the dock.
    In any event, I’m glad that you guys are happy with your 3rd baseman. I am happy that you have him too.

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 11:13 am
  • jp:
    You do realize that if the Yankees had a league-average third baseman they’d probably still be 10 or 11 games behind the Sox, as opposed to 7.5, or don’t you, maybe even worse?

    SF June 15, 2007, 12:19 pm
  • Sure…he’s having a great regular season, again. There is NO question that he is a great ballplayer. I am just saying that if I were constructing my team to win in the postseason, I wouldn’t necessarily choose him in my starting 8 (or 9 if you include the DH).

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 12:24 pm
  • I am just saying that if I were constructing my team to win in the postseason, I wouldn’t necessarily choose him in my starting 8 (or 9 if you include the DH).
    This is crazy, totally crazy.

    SF June 15, 2007, 12:58 pm
  • I am just saying if you combined the run production of Drew, Lugo, Crisp, and Mirabelli you still wouldn’t have ARod.
    The only time I wouldn’t choose him in my starting 9 is if I had a lineup of
    M. Cabrera
    V. Martinez
    And thats just becuase I am being bias and don’t want any Yankees

    NeffSox June 15, 2007, 1:12 pm
  • Here is my “wish list” 9
    C – Martinez
    1b – Pujols
    2b – Reyes
    ss – Jeter
    3b – Wright
    LF – Manny
    CF – Ichiro
    RF – Vladdy
    DH – Ortiz
    Call me crazy, but that is MY list…not yours. I think that ARod is overrated AND a distraction.
    Neff – for the record, I hate Drew, Lugo and Crisp…Mirabelli serves a purpose.

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 1:20 pm
  • Despite his 12 HR’s (or so) recently, Dave Wright is slightly overrated. He’s damn good, for sure, but slightly overhyped. He might correct me in a year or two, but he’s still young.
    ARod is only as much of a distraction as the media makes him out to be.. everything’s very magnified.

    Lar June 15, 2007, 1:48 pm
  • Also, it might be unrealistic to expect regular season numbers in the post season, for anybody (though small sample size means higher volatility over the norm, which means there are a lot of people that overperform..)
    My logic is simply that, when you’re in the playoffs, pitching will all be aces. Facing Santana twice in a series for 6-7 AB’s is enough to deflate any “normalcy” for stats.
    Extreme example, for sure, but you get the point.

    Lar June 15, 2007, 1:51 pm
  • Lar – THAT’S the point I’ve been waiting for someone to make. That’s what makes Jeter’s postseason success so remarkable.
    That said, I still don’t want ARod on my squad.

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 1:55 pm
  • I think that ARod is overrated AND a distraction.
    I really don’t understand: what does being a distraction have to do in a hypothetical discussion of concocting a fictional, never-to-happen lineup? How can A-Rod be a distraction in a fantasy discussion? Will he date strippers during this fictional post-season? Will he yell “mine” when the opposing hypothetical third baseman tries to catch one of (hypothetical new teammate) Big Papi’s popups? What does “being a distraction” (if he is even one to begin with) have to do with determining who would be on a fantasy team?

    SF June 15, 2007, 2:12 pm
  • Sorry, SF, those were two independent thoughts. I wouldn’t take ARod because I believe he’s not the best man for the job. The fact that he’s overrated and a distraction is besides the point. I worded it poorly.

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 2:23 pm
  • Dougie’s only purpose…
    10:45 takes [LuCo, Drew]’s headphones off and steps on them- says until he is hitting .250, no music

    NeffSox June 15, 2007, 2:28 pm
  • I wouldn’t take ARod because I believe he’s not the best man for the job.
    I understand that’s your opinion, JP, and you’re more than entitled to it. But I too think that’s crazy. A-Rod is THE best third baseman in baseball, and I would take him on the Sox in a minute.
    Now if we were going to debate (and we have in the past) whether you want ARod or Papi or Manny or Jeter up in a tight spot, I’d probably take ARod last. But we’re comparing four Hall-of-Fame talents (not necessarily Hall of Famers before someone jumps on me). Who else in baseball approaches A-Rod as a third baseman? Not Wright. Cabrera is the closest.

    Paul SF June 15, 2007, 2:31 pm
  • Who else in baseball approaches A-Rod as a third baseman?
    M. Lowell BA .316 > A. Rodriguez .311
    Lowell > ARod
    Case Closed

    NeffSox June 15, 2007, 2:39 pm
  • ARod is not the best 3b in the league. And I debated over Cabrera or Wright. In retrospect, I think I would go with Cabrera…even though you get more defense with Wright.

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 2:40 pm
  • Neff – don’t be a d*ck…

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 2:41 pm
  • I just don’t understand how a guy with a line of .311/.411/.680 with 25 HRS and 68 RBIs, plus the fact that many people are expecting him to hit 800 homers by the end of his career isn’t the best 3B in the game.
    Would I want him on my team, with all the obvious rivalry reasons, not necessarily. But he is the best 3B in the game.

    NeffSox June 15, 2007, 2:46 pm
  • jp, I will list for you the third baseman in the league.
    NYY – A-Rod
    BOS – Mike Lowell
    BAL – Melvin Mora
    TBD – Ty Wigginton
    TOR – Troy Glaus
    CLE – Casey Blake
    DET – Brandon Inge
    MIN – Nick Punto (yeah, who?)
    CHC – Joe Crede (he of the completely undeserved Silver Slugger last year)
    KCR – Alex Gordon
    LAA – Chone Figgins (no, he’s not better than A-Rod, and combined with Ervin Santana doesn’t even equal half an A-Rod)
    SEA – Adrian Beltre
    OAK – Eric Chavez
    TEX – Hank Blalock
    A-Rod is so far ahead of all of these guys it’s not even funny. The only third baseman who come close to Rodriguez is Miggy Cabrera and David Wright. Maybe Aramis Ramirez of the Cubbies, too. I know last year fulfilled your wishes of A-Rod looking like a mortal, not surpassing the production of other third basemen but merely matching it, but this year no one’s even close. No major league hitter is even all that close.

    AndrewYF June 15, 2007, 2:54 pm
  • Needless to say jp is probably in a very small club, perhaps no more than four or five members worldwide, with his position.

    SF June 15, 2007, 2:57 pm
  • Well, I know that my fiancee (Yankees fan extraordinare) is also a member of that club. So that’s 2…just in my house.

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 3:06 pm
  • jp, give it up…you’re fighting all alone…based on my earlier comments, you might argue that there are 3 of us, me, you and your fiance who wouldn’t pick arod first for our dream team…but, like i said, i have very mixed emotions about arod…somedays i love him, and and somedays he makes me nuts…would i want to be in a foxhole with him?…probably not…would i like him to screw his head on straight, keep his mouth shut, be less cocky, and just let his talent do the talking for him?…yep…he is the best 3rd B [make that the best player] in the game, but i’d only put up so much of a fight to keep him…but, based on the yanks willingness to spend money [see clemens], it’s a safe bet that he’ll stay with the yanks…

    dc June 15, 2007, 4:03 pm
  • dc – If ARod did all those things that you say you’d like him to do, he’d get my vote for best player in the game. To me, it’s so much more than stats and talent.
    I don’t mind fighting alone…it’s a good way to kill a Friday at work. :)

    jp-sf June 15, 2007, 4:07 pm

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