It never really ends, does it?
Although the New York Yankees are not playing in the postseason for just the second time in the last 17 years, third baseman Alex Rodriguez continues to find himself in the spotlight. This time, he was a topic of conversation as Yankees general manager Brian Cashman sat down for an appearance on ESPN Radio’s Ian Connor Show.
“It’s not like, all right, we’ll take that money and go in this direction. I think … our fan base saw when we lost significant players at various positions, it was not easy to plug holes because the talent just doesn’t exist.”
This statement counters what many in the baseball world had stated in the wake of the looming 211-game suspension; that the Yankees would be better served by saving the roughly $25 million owed to Rodriguez in 2014 and doling it out to other talent around the league.
The Yankees, Major League Baseball and Alex Rodriguez’ camp have been on less than amiable terms since the suspension was announced earlier this season, with Rodriguez filing a lawsuit against Commissioner Bud Selig, accusing him of “making an example” of the Yankees’ third baseman in wake of the Biogenesis scandal that reinvigorated debate over the game’s cleanliness.
In 44 games with New York, Rodriguez hit seven home runs and drove in 19 runs. He also batted just .244 and slugged .423. Over the course of the past two seasons combined, he has hit just 25 home runs in partial seasons – a far cry from his career average of 41 home runs per year.
Cashman also reiterated the role Rodriguez plays – when healthy – in the New York lineup.
“If it comes down to, would we want the player we signed to be playing that position without any problems? Absolutely, no question about that. I think if people think there’s some sort of benefit by losing that talent, I mean, you can’t replace it. It’s not like, all right, well, Alex is gone. If he winds up getting suspended and it’s upheld, how do you replace that? It’s not easy.”