After an off-season filled with controversy, nobody was too upset when it was announced that Alex Rodriguez would miss the first few weeks of 2009 to rehab from hip surgery.
But the time has come. A-Rod is nearly healed and looks set to return to the Yankees Friday night. Is this a good thing or a bad thing? After weighing the pros and cons, I decided that A-Rod can only help the Yankees. Here’s why…
1. He’s one of the best hitters of his time
Regardless of the steroid controversy following Rodriguez, I think he will be able to rack up quite a few homers in 2009. Even if his power numbers decrease, he still has never had a full season where he had a batting average lower than .285, and he hasn’t had less than 35 homers in a season since 1997. He will surely add more to a struggling New York lineup than Cody Ransom did while he was filling in at third base for most of this season. Remember, the Yankees do need a clean-up hitter to hit between Mark Teixeira and Hideki Matsui!
2. He has a Gold Glove
Take away his bat and now what does Alex Rodriguez have? Unlike many dominant hitters in the league, he has two Gold Glove Awards and will continue to show dominance with the leather. That’s one thing that nobody can deprive A-Rod of, his ability to make game-changing plays in the field. The Yankees pitching isn’t too strong and that’s just what they need right now (well, besides a bullpen makeover): a strong defensive guy who will make the game-changing plays that keep runners off the bases.
3. The Yankees are 13-15
Truthfully, the Yankees are lucky that they are still in fourth place in the American League East (which is supposed to be Major League Baseball’s toughest division). 13-15 isn’t quite the record that baseball experts predicted for New York at this point in the season. Obviously something isn’t working, and why not try as many different changes as possible? Having A-Rod return to the line-up can’t be bad in any way. They need all of the help they can get.
4. People pay to see Alex Rodriguez
Whether Alex Rodriguez is getting positive attention or negative attention, he draws fans out to watch New York baseball. The new (and supposedly “improved”) Yankee Stadium has too many overpriced tickets, which is why the team isn’t getting sellout crowds. If the Yankees get a chance to draw more fans to the ballpark, it can only be a good thing. That chance is Alex Rodriguez.
So fans, get ready to see the return of A-Rod! Hopefully, this means a turn-around for the Yankees!