Closing thoughts from Alex’s Big Apple circus
Plenty to go off here as we close up shop at George M. Steinbrenner Field, a few hours after Alex Rodriguez completed his 33-minute news conference downstairs in the left-field picnic area.
You’re going to read harsh reviews, but the first thing to note is that a good portion of the audience considered A-Rod’s performance all right, considering the circumstances. He’s not going to get ‘speech of the year’ honors — look, he’s not the most polished guy in this setting — but he also didn’t botch this.
Clearly he’s not ready to open the vault to everything and anything he did in 2001, 2002 and 2003. We know a little more now than we did in the morning, and as I said before, he is most certainly not in a court of law. The questions are still going to keep coming and it’s up to him if he wants to field them.
“I may have to answer for the rest of my career,” Rodriguez said. “That’s the position I’ve put myself in.”
I still find it a curious explanation that he would put something in his body for 18 months without having express knowledge of what it was doing for him, and it’s dubious that he didn’t think or know they were steroids. Brian Cashman bristled at that later.
“I like the fact more that when he carries it that he was stupid, more than young and naïve,” Cashman said. “It was stupid. It was a bad decision that may cost him on so many levels. He understands that and he’s dealing with it now. We’re all going to be moving with him during this process. He’s suffering, the Yankees are suffering.”
But that aside … Rodriguez was not alone in that era, which he called “loosey goosey” in the ESPN interview. Maybe it will come back that the majority of big leaguers were using from 2001-03, and that’s just something that Hall of Fame voters will have to deal with when Rodriguez’s name comes up for candidacy about 14 years into the future.
There will be, as Rodriguez said, debates and questions about everything he did in Texas. The course of action the Yankees are most concerned with right now is getting – as Cashman said – Humpty Dumpty back together again and putting him on that wall.
“I really hope that, through this crisis, we are going to become closer than ever,” Rodriguez said. “I think that’s going to happen. I owe an apology not only to my teammates and the whole organization, but every fan throughout the world that is a fan of baseball.”