Alex Rodriguez and 7 MLB Stars Who Have Had a Terrible Postseason
No Phillies and no Yankees...not to mention the Red Sox and Braves both collapsed to close out the season, failing to make the playoffs.
It's been a strange postseason, with the Brewers finally living up to their potential, the Rangers avoiding a letdown following last year's World Series appearance and the Tigers and Cardinals catching fire in the second half of the season and riding those hot streaks to upsets of the Yankees and Phillies, respectively.
All of the eight playoff teams have their fair share of superstars—some are proving, others are proving nothing.
Obviously, the four teams eliminated will have their fair share of disappointment, but so do the four left.
Here are the seven most disappointing superstars of this postseason. While guys like Placido Polanco, Alex Avila and Elvis Andrus have been disappointing, they're hardly superstars. Here, I'm talking about the guys who had to show up for their teams to win it all.
7. Ryan Howard
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As great as Ryan Howard's postseason started, it ended much worse.
Howard had a four-RBI game in the Phillies' 11-6 Game 1 win over the Cardinals in the NLDS—then he fell off a cliff. Howard went one-for-16, with one RBI, six Ks and no walks, as the Phillies lost three of four to shockingly lose to the Cardinals.
Making the situation even worse, the poor guy tore his Achilles on a weak ground out—the Phillies' final play of the 2011 season.
If Philly fans booed Santa, then how do you think they treated Howard, a $20-milllion man who was on base once in the last four games?
6. Evan Longoria
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After he nearly single-handedly willed the Rays into one of the more miraculous comebacks ever, Longoria slowed considerably in the ALDS against the talented Rangers as the Rays bowed out quickly.
His sole meaningful hit was a late Game 2 home run that cut the Rangers' lead to 7-6. The Rangers eventually lost that game and the series, and the Rays' greatest offensive option was held in check.
Longoria turned all playoff-A-Rod-like with the series tied 1-1, going zero-for-seven, with five Ks over the Rays' final two games.
5. Justin Verlander
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There might be some backlash on this one.
Verlander is 2-1 with the most K's and innings pitched out of any pitcher this post season, but he just hasn't been himself.
His ERA has more than doubled from this regular-season ERA. You could say it's because he's played good offenses, but less-talented teammate Max Scherzer has dominated both Yankees and Rangers hitters, and Verlander didn't have problems with anyone in the regular season.
Verlander has been aided by run support, too. The Tigers two highest scoring postseason games have come in Verlander's starts.
He hasn't been awful, and has given the Tigers chances to win, but don't believe TBS, FOX and ESPN: Justin Verlander was much better in the regular season than he has been in the playoffs.
4. James Shields
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At one point in their ALDS with the Rangers, the Rays looked poised to run away with the series.
Already up one game to zero, the Rays jumped out to an early 2-0 lead with their unquestioned ace, James Shields, on the mound. Two hit batters, a wild pitch and three hits later and the Rays were reeling.
Granted, Shields only had one start, but it was because of how he pitched in that one start that he didn't have any more innings to show.
3. Mark Teixeira
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If I told you that the ageless Jorge Posada and faceless Brett Gardner would be the New York Yankees' playoff MVPs, would you be surprised they're home?
Luckily for Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez plays for the Yankees, because otherwise he'd be Public Enemy No. 1 in Gotham.
Two hits, one RBI and a .167 batting average all for the low, low price of $23 million. If it wasn't for his ridiculous contract, Tex's days in pinstripes would be numbered.
2. Michael Young
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While the Rangers are in the driver's seat, up 3-2 vs. Detroit in the ALCS, their success has nothing to do with Michael Young.
A dark-horse MVP candidate, Young is hitting an awful .162 over 37 ABs. He has two measly RBI through the Rangers' nine games, and has looked lost at the plate.
Thankfully, for Rangers fans, Nelson Cruz has reincarnated as Reggie Jackson in the ALCS, more than making up for the lack of production from Young.
1. Alex Rodriguez
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It's easy to pile on A-Rod...and fun, too. Here we go.
Alex Rodriguez made Mark Teixeira look like a bargain at $23 million. The $32 million face of the most-famous franchise in sports fell completely on his face again against the Tigers in the ALDS.
It's only fitting that he K'd with the Yankees down 3-2 in the bottom of the ninth of the decisive Game 5.
For $32 million—and after how bad he produced all series—anything less than hitting that Jose Valverde fastball so hard that it split in two and both halves of the ball cleared the fence for two home runs and a Yankee walk-off would have been a disappointment.
In fact, Alex Rodriguez's struggles were so apparent that after he got his first hit in Game 4 of the ALDS (a single, of course), Tigers' first baseman Miguel Cabrera playfully motioned to A-Rod, questioning if he wanted to keep the ball as a momento.
Yankees fans are completely justified in their frustrations.