Thursday, August 11, 2016
Posted by el duque at 7:49 AM
After two long nights, I'd finally made peace with A-Rod missing this Boston series. It be our way of spitting a loogy on the Redsock hordes who were chanting "We Want A-Rod." It would be fun to deny them. If they want A-Rod, don't play him, I concluded. I felt satisfied.
Immediately, A-Rod stepped into the on-deck circle. The boos cascaded, and I haven't rooted for a Yankee HR so badly since Game One of the 2012 playoffs against Detroit, when Jeter blew out his ankle - (arguably the last meaningful game A-Rod ever played.)
We all know what happened. Alex almost hit one. His fly died at the wall. Would it have been out in Yankee Stadium? Donno. Who cares? But it was sure more interesting than watching Aaron "Jackie Bradley Sr." Hicks, the wrong Aaron. It moved the runner. He nearly came though. Nevertheless, today, some news outlets - out of old habits - are ripping Alex.
A cheap shot? So be it. Why stop now? But I've been thinking lately about a conversation a few years back over a greasy plate of chips and salsa in a Syracuse hotel. I met Marty Appel, the great Yankee publicist and historian, one of nicest people you will ever know. Asked if A-Rod will ever make the Hall of Fame, he said this - I'm paraphrasing:
Someday, maybe 10 years from now, some highly respected sportswriter will look back on A-Rod as a sympathetic character, not as the boogie man that he's been pictured, and it will abruptly change the view of him. From that point on, a movement will come about, and he eventually, people will forgive him, and he will be recognized as a great player.
Appel is right. Someday, maybe around 2025, the world will reconsider A-Rod. It can't happen overnight. Some things just take time. It's not that scars heal. They just get covered over with wrinkles.
But tonight, A-Rod has one last chance to inscribe his image into the Boston fan base - forever. A home run won't change the boos to cheers. But it would sure silence the crowd. Wouldn't we love it? And all you A-Rod haters out there... seriously... wouldn't you love to see it?
OK, I gotta figure out what juju to use. I'm thinking double-reverse brain lapse. What's your plan?