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How A-Rod Helped the New York Yankees Win the World Series

Harold FriendChief Writer IDecember 1, 2009

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 24: Alex Rodriguez of the New Yankees attends the NBA game between the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers Staples Center on November 24, 2009 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Alex Rodriguez has finally played a significant role in helping his team win the World Series.

Until this season, many in the media fostered the belief that Alex Rodriguez was the major reason the Yankees had not been World Champions since 2000, which is patently false.



Solid Pitching Wins the World Series

The Yankees beat the Mets in the 2000 World Series because they had solid pitching.

Teams don't become world champions by battering the opposition. They become world champions by stopping the opposition from scoring. When your opponent doesn't score, your opponent doesn't win.



Yankees' Defeats

Alex Rodriguez was in Texas when the Yankees suffered the worst of all defeats in the 2001 World Series.

He was still in Texas when the Angels decimated the vaunted Yankees' starting rotation of Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Mike Mussina, and David Wells in the first round of the 2002 playoffs.

Alex Rodriguez wasn't managing the Yankees in the 2003 World Series when the Marlins beat a Yankees team whose manager allowed Jeff Weaver to enter a tie game in extra innings. Weaver promptly yielded a game-winning home run.

A-Rod became a Yankee in 2004, the year the Yankees' pitching staff gave up 24 runs in the final four games of the ALCS against Boston.

Yankees pitchers had a 5.30 ERA in that series, and, despite the myth that their offense stopped scoring runs after taking a 3-0 lead in the series, they actually scored 13 runs in the final four games.



A-Rod MVP

In 2005 and 2007, A-Rod was the American League MVP. How does an MVP hinder his team's chances of becoming world champions? This brings us to another myth.

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Playoff and World Series Records

Alex Rodriguez has appeared in 54 postseason games with a .302 batting average.

In the first round, Alex has batted .279 with five home runs and 13 RBIs.

In the second round, the player who will be ranked as the greatest third baseman in baseball history, has batted .347, hit seven home runs and slugged a Bonds-ian .707.

In this year's World Series, A-Rod hit only .250, but after a horrible start, he had five hits in 12 at-bats in the final four games.

Alex led the Yankees in the playoffs and World Series with a .365 batting average, six home runs, 18 RBI, and 12 walks.



Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Ted Williams, and the Great Barry Bonds

Blaming Alex Rodriguez for the Yankees' recent lack of world championships is like blaming the U.S. government for the War on Terror. Other baseball greats have been challenged in the playoffs or World Series.

One of the greatest of all players, Mickey Mantle, batted only .257 in 12 World Series, including .208 in 1953 and .120 in 1962.

In the latter series, Willie Mays batted only .250 with no home runs. Willie batted .247 in his World Series appearances.

Ted Williams batted .200, with no extra base hits, in his only World Series.

The great Barry Bonds, who still holds the single-season home-run record, batted .216 in the playoffs.



Alex Rodriguez Helped the Yankees Win

Alex Rodriguez is an integral part of a world championship team that is an offensive powerhouse. The 2009 Yankees hit 244 home runs, scored 915 runs, and won the World Series.

It is significant that the team didn't become dominant until Alex returned from hip surgery.

A-Rod has done what was demanded of him. He hit in the clutch at the right time and won, which is not a redundancy.



References:


Baseball-Reference

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