In just a few days, Friday to be exact, Alex Rodriguez will play his final major league baseball game….EVER. We will be rid of an habitual liar whom found many troubles in being able to admit wrongdoings and hold himself accountable. We all owe a big “Thank You” to the New York Yankees. While this is being called a “retirement”, it doesn’t take much thought to realize Rodriguez was forced into retirement and the Yankees, all of Major League Baseball and all fans (Yankees or otherwise) were sick of having to deal with Rodriguez. All of Major League Baseball, as well as the fans, realized that they couldn’t allow Rodriguez to reach another major milestone. (Rodriguez currently sits at 696 home runs, just 4 shy of 700). He currently sits just 66 home runs behind the current “home run king”, Barry Bonds (762 HRs), and just 59 home runs behind the man whom should still be the “home run king”, Hank Aaron (755 HRs). Everyone has finally come to the realization that by letting Alex Rodriguez, another player completely tarnished by his alleged use of steroids and HGH (human growth hormone), become the “home run king” or even reach 700 career home runs, you would be further pummeling a game that used to be the “national pastime”. But no longer is baseball the “national pastime”. No longer is baseball popular. No longer is baseball played by millions of children, nor does baseball have the adoring fans it once had. Between contractual lockouts and the alleged use of steroids and HGH, fans have pushed baseball to the wayside, and for good reason. That’s why a move like this; a move to remove Alex Rodriguez from the game he loves, is the best thing for everyone. This is the only way for baseball to even begin to regain even a little popularity.
The saddest part of all of this is that Alex Rodriguez is an amazing athlete whom once had amazing capabilities, amazing talent and amazing promise. From his days in which he dazzled Seattle and the rest of the baseball world while with the Mariners, Rodriguez began to take a turn for the worse when joining the Texas Rangers and signing a whopping 10-year, 252 million dollar contract! It was then that Rodriguez felt as though he owed more to the game he loved. He felt he had to provide more each game and for the fans. Is it the fault of the fans? No. Is it the fault of baseball? Yes. As we all know, greed consumes. Those without money will tell you how happy people with money must be. Those with money, however, know better. They know that a new batch of problems and issues arise with having disgusting amounts of money. Add fame and expectations into the mix and if you’re psychologically weak like Rodriguez proved to be, it’s a chemical reaction for trouble; and that’s exactly what Rodriguez found. Though his stats with the Rangers did improve exponentially, it was due to Rodriguez’ alleged use of steroids and HGH. And, after just 3 seasons in Texas, the Rangers quickly realized they were in well over their heads. From there, Rodriguez became the child of divorced parents in the midst of a heated custody battle when the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox fought over him in 2003. Rodriguez finally signed with the Yankees and went on to win a Worlds Series title with them in 2009. However, Rodriguez, allegedly, still couldn’t stop using steroids and HGH during his time with the Yankees. Is this a champion? Plain and simple, “No, it’s not”. Real champions don’t cheat. Real champions rely on their instinctual abilities and God-given talents. Real champions love a game enough that they wouldn’t want to tarnish it for everyone else.
Upon the tearful announcement of Rodriguez’ “retirement”, CBS Sports released an article explaining why he’s basically a shoe-in for the Hall of Fame. This writer couldn’t laugh harder at that article. Though his statistics are solid (.295 batting average, 696 HRs, 2,084 RBIs), Rodriguez has put himself in the same predicament as former players such as Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro, and that is the unenviable position of having a tarnished career; a career with asterisks at best. If Major League Baseball wants to redeem itself with fans, become even the tiniest bit popular again, regain its old glory in the littlest of way, they will continue to rid itself of players whom tarnish the game and don’t really show an affinity for it.