Today, Alex Rodriguez will play his MLB final game. After more than 20 years in the league, A-Rod will finally leave baseball behind. There’s no doubt that Rodriguez, or A-Rod as he is mostly called, was one of the best to play the game. But there will be much debate about his career, his legacy, and his hall-of fame chances. Should he make it?
First, let’s look at his baseball résumé. 696 home runs. 3,113 hits. 14x All-Star. 3x MVP. 2x Gold-Glove winner. That’s just ridiculous. There was nothing A-Rod couldn’t do in his career. He also won a championship in 2009 but I’m not sure if his lone title is a point for or against. A-Rod has been often criticized for his postseason performance. It’s kind of a black mark on his career; one of many.
With those numbers, how is there even a debate? He’s 4th all-time in home runs, 2nd in RBI, 13th in WAR. He’s also a colossal dick and was busted for steroids, TWICE! People don’t hate A-Rod because they’re jealous, or that he plays for the Yankees. They hate him because he deserves to be hated. He’s a cheater, he’s selfish, and he’s kind of a douche. And all that might keep him out of the Hall of Fame.
Let’s rundown A-Rod’s history of being an ass. First off, he was drafted 1st overall in 1993. That’s already a bad start. Do you know who else was drafted first? Barry Bonds, Bryce Harper, Josh Hamilton, Delmon Young, Darryl Strawberry, fucking Phil Nevin. All pricks.
In 2001, A-Rod left the team that drafted him, the Mariners, after they had recently lost two superstars in Randy Johnson and Ken Griffey, Jr. Total dick move. That’s like Westbrook leaving OKC after this year, but he already signed an extension because he’s not a dick. However, the Mariners signed Ichiro and won 116 games the next season. So fuck you A-Rod.
A-Rod didn’t leave Seattle to play for a better team. He signed with the last place Rangers. Why? Because they gave him the most money, the richest contract ever. No I’m not speculating; A-Rod admitted this years later.
It wasn’t working out in Texas. A-Rod was still great, even winning an MVP, but Texas still couldn’t escape last place. The Rangers were desperate to trade him. They made a deal with Boston with A-Rod forfeiting money to get the deal done, which was not allowed. MLB struck the trade down and A-Rod had to stay with the lowly Rangers.
Not for long though. After the Red Sox deal didn’t work out, he was traded to their rival, the Yankees. Now one of the most hated players would play for the most hated team. Perfect fit. In his first year in New York, the Yankees would blow a 3-0 series lead to Boston in the ALCS, resulting in the Red Sox winning their first title in almost 100 years. I’m not saying it’s A-Rod’s fault but maybe it was.
That ALCS series also featured maybe my favorite A-Rod moment ever, when he slapped the ball out Bronson Arroyo’s hand. If you don’t remember, please watch.
I think my second favorite A-Rod moment happened that year involving the Red Sox. In a regular season game in July, A-Rod and Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek exchanged words and then fists. It gave us this great image.
In 2007, after three season with no championships, A-Rod decided to opt out of his contract. He was unhappy with the direction of the team. Again, this is the Yankees so it’s not like the team sucked. What made it worse was that A-Rod announced his decision during the middle of the World Series. He couldn’t wait a couple days, he wanted to suck some of the news away from the sport’s biggest event and towards himself. In the end, he re-signed with the Yankees for another record breaking amount. The Yankees would regret giving him this contract. It’s still active now.
In 2009 it was leaked that A-Rod tested positive for steroids in 2003. A-Rod would admit to using steroids between 2001 and 2003. However A-Rod would not be punished because there was no penalty for using back then. He would win his only championship that year.
In 2013, A-Rod was one of the players involved in the Biogenesis scandal. The Biogenesis clinic in Florida was proven to have given a number of MLB players, including A-Rod, Human Growth Hormone. A-Rod refused to cooperate with the league and was subsequently suspended for the whole 2014 season.
At this point, A-Rod had no defenders. He was already selfish, greedy, and a kind of a dick. But now he was a confirmed cheater. This is his legacy. Not the home runs or the MVPs. But he still belongs in the Hall-of -Fame. Look at those numbers. Even with steroids those numbers are crazy. But what do you think? Does A-Rod belong in the Hall?