If Anything's Burning In The Bronx, It's Alex Rodriguez, Mr. October 2009
Alex Rodriguez is channeling memories of the 1977 postseason to New York Yankees fans around the world. The third baseman is making himself a good case for the title of Mr. October with his recent playoff performance.
The last few games against the Angels and Twins have shown that Rodriguez has found his stroke in the playoffs and is coming up big in clutch situations. It looks like Reggie Jackson might soon be the old Mr. October.
Just like Jackson, Alex Rodriguez made headlines before the season even began.
In 1977, Jackson made headlines just by signing with New York. George Steinbrenner and the manager were arguing about who their right fielder should before the start of the 1977 season. Steinbrenner wanted Reggie while Billy Martin was not fond of the former Oakland Athletic.
Martin didn't like the Jackson signing because he was the Tigers manager in 1972, when the A's beat Detroit in the playoffs. Martin also did not like Jackson because the future Yankee star was once quoted saying, "I hate him. But if I played for him, I'd probably love him."
Rodriguez made headlines all around the media in February 2009. That month, Selena Roberts, a writer for Sports Illustrated , broke the news that he had tested positive for steroids in 2003.
Rodriguez's name was part of a government-sealed document that listed the names of 104 players that tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs in a 2003 drug survey.
A-Rod is no stranger to headlines, but this one shook the baseball world.
Rodriguez admitted to his steroid use before spring training and had to face the media. During the 2009 season, Rodriguez was out to prove that he's a team player.
Fast-forward to the playoffs. Rodriguez has gone from being the team's bad-luck charm to becoming the team's new Mr. Reliable. Reggie Jackson put behind his confrontations with his manager and teammate to leave the Bronx Zoo and lead the Yankees to the World Series.
Similar to the "Reg-gie! Reg-gie!" chants from the late 1970s, chants cheering for A-Rod are now being heard in October. A few years ago, boos were coming from the stadium in all directions.
Looks like things have taken a turn for the better for Alex Rodriguez and he could be a key for the Yankees success in the quest for championship No. 27.
Has he earned his pinstripes with his postseason success, much like Reggie Jackson did in 1977?
To many Yankee fans and critics, he has yet to earn the prestigious Yankees uniform until he puts that last ring on Mr. Steinbrenner's finger.
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