Alex Rodriguez Injury: Yankees Offense Will Easily Survive Loss of Superstar
At first glance it might seem like losing Alex Rodriguez would have a major impact on the New York Yankees offense. It won't. The Bronx Bombers will keep on slugging while the third baseman sits out with a fractured left hand.
Rodriguez has reached a point in his career where the expected and actual production don't match up. Based on name recognition alone he's still thought of as an elite hitter, but the numbers simply don't bear that out in his 19th season.
He's hitting just .276 with 15 home runs and 44 runs batted in through 94 games. His .806 OPS is lower than it has been in any season since 1995 when Rodriguez played only 48 games.
In other words, he's not the dominant force he once was at the plate. Instead of being a player that's expected to carry the offense on his back, he's just another piece of the puzzle for the Yankees at this point.
New York still has more than enough firepower in the lineup. Robinson Cano leads the way and has established himself as a strong contender for MVP. The talented second basemen is on pace for 37 home runs, which would smash his previous career high.
After Cano, the Yankees have Curtis Granderson, who continues to show off an impressive power stroke, and Mark Teixeira. The first basemen has rebounded from his usual early-season slump to post impressive numbers.
That trio will make sure the Yankees offense doesn't fall apart without A-Rod. When you consider the depth the lineup should still have without Rodriguez, it's possible New York won't even miss a beat.
Will the Yankees offense be fine without Rodriguez?
Derek Jeter, Nick Swisher, Andruw Jones and Raul Ibanez will all help pick up the slack during Rodriguez's absence. It also makes the acquisition of Ichiro Suzuki look better because he helps lengthen to lineup as well even though he's not the player he once was, either.
Veteran Eric Chavez will probably see a majority of the starts at third base. He's played 64 games this season and has posted respectable numbers with an OPS only eight points lower than the player he's replacing.
All told, losing Rodriguez shouldn't be a major concern to the Yankees. Certainly not as much as it would have been four or five years ago when he was still one of the best hitters in baseball. He isn't on that level anymore.
New York has enough star power and depth without him to put runs on the scoreboard at a high rate.
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