Sorry, Yankee fans. A-Rod is not going anywhere.
Baseball fans love numbers, so here are the key statistics:
Five years, $114 million.
2012 stats: 122 games, .272 average, 18 home runs, 57 RBI.
The monster year of 2007 (.314, 54 HR, 156 RBI) is but a distant memory. Rodriguez has maintained an average above .270 over the last three seasons, but the power seems to be in a free-fall.
Is this going to get any better for Alex? Doubtful.
Players that are 36 years of age do not suddenly rediscover their power.
Rodriguez did not get benched in the ALCS because he was looking for love in all the wrong places. He got benched because he is a liability in the lineup.
Professional teams have continually shown that they will put up with all sorts of questionable behavior as long as the player produces.
Trades are not about whether a team wants to get rid of a player. Plenty of squads could find a player or two that are definitely not worth their contracts. It is about finding a trade partner.
Who would take A-Rod at this point? The Miami Marlins? The Los Angeles Dodgers? The New York Mets? Either of the Chicago teams? This might be the one time the Yankees would make a deal with the hated Boston Red Sox.
I know that certain “untradeable” players have been moved over the last couple of years. People like Vernon Wells or Carl Crawford come to mind. Both got traded despite massive deals.
The difference is that Wells only has two more years on his deal. Crawford still has five years, and he is also five years younger than A-Rod.
The Yankees would need to agree to pay a large portion of Alex’s remaining deal if he were to be moved. A large portion.
Would A-Rod actually agree to a deal? Who knows? Analyzing the thought process of the complex Rodriguez is problematic at best. Perhaps he would relish the opportunity to escape the New York spotlight.
Then again, he might feel like he needs to stick around and prove that he can rebound. Good luck with that.
This is the sad reality of economics in baseball. In the NFL, Rodriguez would just be cut. However, baseball owners continue to sign these long-term deals even though they should know better.
There is nothing for the Yankees to do unless another team gets desperate for star power, even if both the “star” and “power” are terms from the past.
Alex Rodriguez is going to stick around New York for the time being. Enjoy.