New York Yankees designated hitter Alex Rodriguez has suddenly been a model of drama-free consistency.
As socially awkward as anybody can act with the media, A-Rod tends to work the straight face. Today, as Zack Hample (the dude that squeezed out as much notoriety he could these past couple of weeks) presented Rodriguez with his 3K-hit baseball, Rodriguez responded in the following fashion.
You’re forgiven Zack. I have a PHD in saying dumb things over the years. No problems as I can relate.”
With that, the new Alex Rodriguez has officially appeared before our very eyes.
This A-Rod is a gentler version. A guy who loves his teammates. A professional baseball player who is playing for the love of the game.
He’s a guy who has separated himself from all the drama that has followed him throughout his 21-year MLB career.
How in the ever-loving world did this magical transformation take place? After all, this is the guy who produced the single most controversy in the world of sports in recent memory – doing it while not even staying on the field.
His remarkable 15 home runs, 45 runs batted in and .280 average as a banged-up 39-year old veteran in 2015 has allowed the drama to take a backseat. This production coupled with the notion that his PR people are doing a masterful job is why the new A-Rod is suddenly revered and loved.
OK, revered and loved is a bit too extreme, but the point has been driven home.
Not only did the Hample 3K-ball resolve itself in an outstanding result, but the matter of his marketing bonuses has as well.
Since his banishment from Major League Baseball ended after the 2014 season, the matter at hand that pushed headlines dealt with the certainty that the Yankees would be in the hole for a possible $6 million.
Through many lawyers and meetings, this nonsense dragged Yankees fans mad. Rodriguez wanted his money and the Yankees felt insulted that they had to pay this known PED user for the milestones he’d eventually reach.
On Friday, both parties decided to come up with the nice number of $3.5 million. This would be the total handed out for the marketing end of the contract, and it was announced that it would go to charitable groups.
So not only did Rodriguez “make a funny” today, he came out on the other end of this marketing bonus nonsense looking as rosy as ever.
Like previously mentioned, this is the new A-Rod, the guy who leaves drama at the front door.
Or could it be as simple as him producing?
As far as the Yankees were concerned, it suddenly makes complete sense to agree on a $3.5 million number. They’re currently surprising baseball with a 42-37 record (tied for 1st in AL East) and surely do not want to rock the boat and upset their No. 3 hitter.
While some theorize that Rodriguez is a much different player and person when Derek Jeter isn’t around the clubhouse, it’s tough to find proof. Sure, a lot of that makes sense. A-Rod now looks like the leader of a squad that loves him. This was an impossibility with the great Jeter roaming the dugout.
In any event, Rodriguez does this. He sways public opinion, his image so drastically at certain times.
2015 is no different than 2009 which saw Alex come up with his first (and only) monstrous postseason performance as a Yankee – directly after he was busted for PED use the first time.
Fast-forward six-seasons and we’re now experiencing the same person – a guy who feels very little pressure after another giant PED-controversy has concluded.
Whatever the formula is for a drama-free A-Rod, the Yankees will take it and run.
That is, until the next incident occurs.
[su_button url=”https://elitesportsny.com/2015/07/03/2015-mets-disappointing-season/” target=”blank” background=”#000080″ size=”10″ wide=”yes” radius=”0″]NEXT: 2015 Mets Most Disappointing Season Yet[/su_button]