New York Yankees Drama: Rain, Injuries and A-Rod
“Drama” has been the best way to explain the 2012 ALCS. While the drama continued in the series between the Tigers and the Yankees with the postponement of the game due to “potential rain”, this was just one small matter wrapped into cornucopia of controversy.
The Yankees have not looked like themselves this entire series thus far, and find themselves down 3-0 going into today’s make-up game. Going into the series I think there was a belief that the Tigers may have had a slight advantage, but the way that Detroit have been showing up the Yankees to-date is very uncharacteristic of this New York dynasty. Stories like this happen all the time in professional sports during the playoffs, it’s always anyone’s game – but, to see this happen to the Yankees? I am a little taken back.
Things started to fall apart for the Yankees when Derek Jeter went down in game one with fractured ankle. Losing the team captain and leader, not to mention one of the teams strongest performers, cannot be ignored as demoralizing factor. We have yet to see the Yankees recover from the loss of their Iron Man. Injured players, however, are all a part of the game.
What’s been really been rattling the cages in the Yankees clubhouse has been the controversy surrounding the “twenty-five million dollar man”, Alex Rodriguez. A-Rod has looked horrible in the post-season so far, batting only .130 with a slugging percentage somewhere in the range of 0 – twelve of his eighteen at bats have been strike-outs. He has been impotent at the plate. As such he’s been benched. Anytime you’re benching someone who is being paid twenty-five million a season controversy and rumours are bound to arise… and now we’re hearing that Brian Cashman (the Yankees GM) has been potentially looking for new suitors for their most expensive asset on the field. While Cashman denies these rumours, you can’t help but believe there could be some validity to them – that’s a lot of cake for not much icing!
Rodriguez has not exactly been silent about the entire issue, claiming that he’s “still a threat whenever he’s at the plate”. Rodriguez has been vocal in ther ways as well about the decision to bench him, and maybe pride dictates that he does speak his mind – however, when you’re not doing your job you’re bound to get (if nothing else) laid off for awhile. Rodriguez needs to be a man and face up to the fact that another player may be able to perform better than him right now, and for the sake of the team should have that opportunity.
While last night’s game being postponed due to “potential rain” was just another notch in the belt for the Yankees in this series, something tells me that it was a divine act for New York on behalf of the baseball gods. The mental game of New York has clearly been rattled – two of their best players, in Jeter and Rodriguez, have been ghosts (for different reasons). Anytime you lose that presence on the field it’s going to affect your team. They received a reprieve last night to get their heads back into it, and now need to pull out a miracle at Comerica tonight.
I say to the Yankees: Rise above it all and do what makes sports so great! Don’t let drama bring you down, and make this the series it was meant to be.
… I say to the Tigers: Get ready for the big dance, because the odds of the Yankees pulling this one out are on par with me growing a third arm (re: not likely).