Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Ok, so after a failed attempt to start a blog before, this is the restart right here. The blog is going to be about sports, because that's what I'm really passionate about. Alright, enough of that, time to get to the meat of it.

Man, everyone was talking about the Alex Rodriguez story in SI today on the radio. I had just typed in that I thought this whole story was blown so much out of proportion, because he plays for the Yankees. And maybe that's true to the degree that this subject gets overexposed because of all the media is out there. However, it clearly is an issue in that it's an issue in the Yankee clubhouse. But let's be serious - who is this more likely to affect: the rest of the Yankees players or A-Rod himself? Of course it's A-Rod. This is a team that is hungry to get that championship that's eluded them for 5 years, and I find it hard to believe that they would let this be a distraction for them, especially when this drama has more or less been playing out for most of the summer.

A-Rod however, is a different story. He's a lot more likely to let this affect him, and if he starts overthinking things again, it might be deja vu in the playoffs. And if he does, God help him, because everyone - press, fans, teammates (maybe not publicly) will be back on him for not producing. Now, we don't know how he'll react to this. No one does except for him - and who knows if he even knows how he'll react. He's played better as of late. But I do think that it would be foolish to think that he can fundamentally change the kind of guy he is in the span of a few weeks. He's not Derek Jeter, he's not Jason Giambi, and people should not expect him to be.

He's always going to be image-conscious - that's just the way he is. It's the way he's built for whatever reason. And because he is, he's always susceptible to wanting to try too hard to win the approval of everyone who's been down on him. We've seen this season that this is what has gotten him in trouble.

Who knows how the playoffs will work out for A-Rod and the Yankees. They have so much talent, they could very well still win a World Series without his contributions. And A-Rod has so much talent, that despite what's going on in his head, he can still be a contributor. But for him to exorcise his demons and prove his doubters wrong - and I really believe that's a major motivator for him given the kind of personality he has shown to have - he's going to need to act and more importantly, think in an uncharacteristic manner in the playoffs.

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