Tuesday, July 17, 2007

A-Rod destined to remain A-Yankee

Well folks:
A-Rod!
I don't know the last time one name has provided this much drama in recent New York sports history.
Jeremy Shockey, Plaxico Burress, Stephon Marbury ... you name them ... don't come close to the media attention Alex Rodriguez has received on a daily basis since he became a Yankee.
So, as the slugger many consider to be the best player in the game today (and I am one of the many) continues to have a monster season, the question have intensified, "Will A-Rod opt out of his contract at season's end? If he does, will the Yankees stand by their statement to not negotiate a new deal with him and if so, what uniform will he be wearing next season?
I don't know about you guys, but my head was spinning with the odds A-Rod would be a Yankee, or whether he'd be worth the $32-$35 million annually he's expected to command with a new deal.
Since everybody else under the sun has given their opinion, let me give you mine.
Call it blind loyalty or pinstripe pride, I expect to see A-Rod finishing his career as a Yankee.
OK, all you Yankee haters might want to stop reading now ...
For the rest of us Bomber fans, two things keep telling me he'll remain a Yankee. The first is strictly monetary. Anybody who knows his agent -- Scott Boras -- knows that A-Rod will go where the money is the best. A Boras client has traditionally gone for the money and I don't expect A-Rod to be any different.
That said, forget the rhetoric about the Yankees not negotiating with A-Rod if he opts out of his deal. How many times have we heard that from any team before? It wouldn't surprise me to see the two sides reach a contract extension before the opt-out deadline so the Rangers would still be on the hook for the money they still owe A-Rod on his existing deal.
The second reason is ... here come by Yankee bias ... A-Rod could conceivably break all sorts of records in another uniform but he wouldn't get 1/10th the recognition as he would as a Yankee. Just imagine an A-Rod plaque -- or better yet -- an A-Rod monument next to Joe D's or Babe Ruth's.
Don't laugh, if A-Rod breaks the all-time home run mark and goes down as one of the all-time greats wearing a Yankee uniform, would a monument be a ridiculous notion. Breaking the record -- being recognized as one of the best ever -- with any other team in the majors would simply not hold the same swagger as doing it pinstripes.
And don't think that notion hasn't crossed A-Rod's mind.
For all the drama that has surrounded his three-plus years as a Yankee, if the money is right, expect A-Rod to wear that interlocking A-Rod for many years to come.
That prediction and $2 will get you ... well, you know the rest.
Take care and God bless.

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