The Dallas Braden/Alex Rodriguez feud is still going strong, and while part of me feels that Braden ought to let it go and move (which he appears to be doing tonight with eight perfect innings against the Rays so far), all of me feels that Alex Rodriguez is one of the bigger punks in the game.
This article quoting A-Fraud on espn.com kind of says it all. Rodriguez could have simply said he didn’t mean anything by stomping on the mound as he ran from third back to first in front of Braden who was pitching and apologized if Braden felt Rodriguez was showing him up. Instead, ARod had to get in a shot, which shows what a s*#$ he really is: “Now, look, I really don’t want to extend his extra 15 minutes of fame.”
No wonder Braden hasn’t let it go. Basically, what Rodriguez comment says in so many words is: “I’m the great Alex Rodriguez, and I get to do whatever I want on the field. If players who aren’t as great as me don’t like it, they can go lump it.”
Whether or not stomping on the mound on the way back to first breaks any of baseball’s unwritten laws, one thing is for certain: One of baseball’s most venerable unwritten laws is that you don’t show up opposing players on the field.
You don’t stand there at home plate admiring your long home run for five seconds, you don’t make a pistol with your fingers and shoot batters you’ve just struck out, and you don’t yell “Hah!” at infielders trying to catch an infield pop-up as you run by.
It’s not professional, and all the players playing at the major league level should act like professionals. Not all major league players act like professionals, of course, but that doesn’t detract from the fact that they all should.
A-Rod is a pussy. I know that’s sexist, and I apologize to the women who read this post. However, every boy who ever played in a schoolyard knows exactly what I’m taking about. A-Rod is one of those hot-shot golden boys who, because he can play ball better than anyone else, thinks he’s better than anyone else for all purposes.
Everything about A-Rod indicates a lack of moral fiber. He told wild lies about his past steroid use, and when he got caught red-handed, he told wild lies about how he hadn’t admitted his use even to himself.
I’m also still convinced that being the biggest star and getting the highest salary are more important to Rodriguez than winning rings. And it isn’t enough that he’s the best paid player in baseball. He also has to rub other players’ noses in the fact that he gets special treatment because he’s the big star.
The very best players are not necessarily known as well-rounded human beings. Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, and Mark McGwire are all men with some pretty serious character flaws of one kind or another.
Still, I certainly wouldn’t feel any sorrow if an A’s pitcher (not Braden—hopefully, one of his teammates will step up) and give Rodriguez an ouchy that hurts a lot. Not to the head, of course, but a fastball catching him flush in the middle of the back would be just about right. If Rodriguez thinks his sh%& doesn’t stink, somebody should come forward and show him there’s a way things are done and not done in the professional game.
By the way, Braden just completed his perfect game against the Rays, one of the best teams in baseball. He probably isn’t spending a lot of time thinking about A-Rod as I write this, but there would be a certain justice to it if he dedicated his immortal performance today to Rodriguez.
Even if A-Fraud ends up being the next juicer to break the all-time home run record, Braden did something today that Rodriguez will never do on a baseball field.