A-Rod – What else are we going to talk about?
I found it somewhat humorous Alex Rodriguez said that he will be under intense scrutiny for “the next 18 months to 24 months”. Interesting how one can predict the exact time frame involved in the ‘post-confession’ period. Does that mean we are guaranteed of no reference to A-Rod in March 2011? Looking forward to it!
Personally, I don’t blame Alex for not wanting to talk about his past drug use following the press conference earlier in the week. If he talked, he’d run the risk of contradicting his previous comments…
Wallace Matthews of Newsday wrote a great piece today about how GM Brian Cashman wanted to ‘move on’ when A-Rod opted out of his ‘drug-induced’ $250 million contract in 2007. Cashman’s position has gone largely unnoticed until now, but he could have saved the organization from much embarrassment. A-Rod’s return only came about when A-Rod bypassed agent Scott Boras and dealt with the Yankees and Hank Steinbrenner directly.
It should come as a welcome relief when A-Rod joins the Dominican Republic World Baseball Classic team early next month. Egads! The reporters in Yankees camp will have only baseball to talk about! Of course, there might be mention of the scandalous time that Mark Teixeira took a couple of Advil for a post-game headache…
More Yankees in the Headlines?
I have to admit that I was startled for a moment when I saw the headline about the frozen assets belonging to Johnny Damon and Xavier Nady. Of course, it is clear that they are innocent victims. The government’s freeze of a company affiliated with Robert Allen Stanford impacted accounts owned by Damon and Nady.
Neither Damon nor Nady invested directly with Stanford funds but rather they invested through broker dealers whose accounts were with a Stanford company.
It was reported that Damon complained of being unable to pay his bills and Nady could not put down a deposit on a New York apartment. I find it surprising that both would wrap up their assets through a single source. I guess diversification is not something they are concerned with. I also find it interesting that both players are represented by agent Scott Boras. Thanks for the sound financial advice, Scott! And, oh by the way, Jason Varitek sends his love!
Credit: Branimir Kvartuo/AP
The Return of Bernabe Figueroa Williams
Enjoy camp for a few days, Bernie, but don’t get used to it!
I have to admit that it was both strange and exciting to see Bernie Williams wearing Yankee gear with number 51 on his back. However, that does not mean I would want to see him make a comeback with the team. At this point, I’d clearly prefer Nick Swisher over Bernie. I thought Bernie was a great Yankee but time has moved on.
Credit: Antonelli/New York Daily News
Then again, Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer won a world championship at age 45, winning 16 games in 2008. But c’mon, this guy just doesn’t age…
Bernie had begun a significant decline by 2006, and there is no chance that future years will be any better. He played more and better than expected in 2006, but it was time to turn the page. His presence on the roster would potentially prevent the presence of a younger player with more potential.
Upon completion of the WBC, Bernie should focus on his musical career. His latest CD, Moving Forward, is scheduled for release on April 14, 2009. The CD includes a special live performance with Bruce Springsteen and Patti Scialfa.
MORE A-ROD THOUGHTS
A day later, I am still stunned by the developments revealed on Saturday regarding Alex Rodriguez and his apparent steroid use in 2003.
The last thing I wanted to see was vindication for Jose Canseco but here it is for him with A-Rod’s name smeared across every sports page in America.
I am troubled that A-Rod knew he had tested positive and he had to have known there was always the possibility the information would be leaked one day (particularly considering the ongoing government investigation and the case against Barry Bonds). He had over five years to think about this day, yet none of A-Rod’s subsequent statements has given any hints of possible drug use.
When the “A-Fraud” comments came out through Joe Torre’s book, The Yankee Years, Johnny Damon and Derek Jeter came to A-Rod’s defense…even Larry Bowa. It will be interesting to see if they are so quick to come to A-Rod’s defense this time.
Alex needs to be honest about his past drug use, giving us some insight into why. An apology for all concerned is expected, and it is up to him to convince us that the drug use did not continue.
The next few days will be very critical for A-Rod, and they will shape the future perception of him. He has a chance to right the “wrong”. Alex, it is up to you…
YANKEES CAMP OPENS ON FRIDAY THE 13TH
On the bright side, Yankees camp open on Friday for pitchers and catchers. It will be great to see CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett arrive in Tampa. The first photo of Sabathia and Burnett together with Chien-Ming Wang, Andy Pettitte, and Joba Chamberlain will be a classic.
It’s unfortunate that Joe Girardi will be beseiged by A-Rod questions, but hopefully, he’ll have the time to enjoy the presence of the greatest Yankee pitching staff in years.
NO PRESSURE ENVIRONMENT
Andruw Jones is clearly seeking a pressure-free environment. By signing a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers, he’ll avoid the media glare that would have accompanied a signing with Boston or New York. But his chances of actually making the team are no less secure.
Andruw is a mystery to me. In 1996, he looked like he was poised for a Hall of Fame career. But by 2008, he looked tired and worn out. He was offered an invitation to go to camp with the Yankees, which he declined. When asked about Boston, he said “it’s too cold”. That sounds like someone who clearly wasn’t up to the task of ‘trying to be the best, with the best’. Good luck in Texas, Andruw…well, at least until you get the pink slip in late March…
ANOTHER QUALITY MOVE BY THE PHILLIES
Good for the Phillies in re-signing arbitration eligible first baseman Ryan Howard to a three-year, $54 million contract. Ryan succeeded in achieving his desired annual salary of $18 million and the Phillies locked up one of their young stars through 2011. It is going to be fun watching the Mets and Phillies slug it out this year…
JANE HELLER, YANKEE FAN EXTRAORDINAIRE
Jane Heller wrote a great article for The New York Times today. When all else fails, visit a psychic! A very funny approach about predicting the Yankees’ 2009 season…
I have started reading my copy of ‘Confessions of a She-Fan’. So far, so good, except for the natural physique reference about A-Rod in the prologue in comparison to “those ‘roid guys with their cartoon muscles…”. Oh well, he fooled all of us. Jane’s book has that great, refreshing ‘we’re right there with you’ feel to it. I am definitely re-living my emotions and feelings about the 2007 Yankees as I read the book…
And for the prediction? I’ll go with Jane’s “Nope, I’m good”…