The Machine knew this day was coming…and we hate ourselves for it. We’ve been an A-Rod apologist from the start. There’s just something about an aloof, narcissistic, mega-millionaire that we like. The Machine knew he was doomed as soon as he signed his (first) $250+ million dollar contract with the Yankees. No matter what he did it wouldn’t be good enough. Even if he won you a World Series (which he did), an MVP (which he did…twice) it would never match the obscene amount of expectations that were placed on his shoulders. Biggie was right: Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems.
We even apologized for him during his first steroid controversy. “He didn’t know what he was doing. Look, his cousin just bought some Boli and he took it. That totally sounds legit. Plus, everyone was (is) juicing, so who cares?”
Well, we have now seen the errors of our way, and have converted. The latest PED scandal with Biogenesis, where sources say there is “overwhelming evidence” of A-Rod’s involvement, is it. That, plus the soap opera he’s created with the Yankees with his rehab assignment, unauthorized second medical opinion, etc. Enough is enough, you cannot win our hearts back A-Rod…unless you hit 14 more homers and passes Willie Mays…that shit would be cool.
Anyway, when the dust finally settles and A-Rod writes a tell-all book years from now or goes on Oprah, we’re going to learn that his use of PEDs was systematic, controlled, and well-orchestrated (ala Lance Armstrong). Which makes his first “admission” in 2009 all the more puzzling. In 2009, he went in front of the cameras and acted ignorant/aloof about what he was doing. It was just something he and his cousin did, and he wasn’t sure if he did it right or if it had any effect. If (read: when) this turns out to be bullshit, and we see the detailed records from the Biogenesis clinic showing his doping regimen, A-Rod will be exposed as not only a true fraud, but his narcissism will grow to Anthony Weiner-like status.
Now comes the report that all of the Biogenesis players are ready to cut a deal with MLB and accept their fate…all that is, accept A-Rod. This has obviously angered the MLB brass, who are looking at every possible way to suspend him, including a lifetime ban. One thing A-Rod’s got going for him is if there’s anyone that could screw this up, it’s Bud Selig. Remember Bud: in the eyes of the CBA, MLBPA, and the inevitable arbitrator that will be hearing A-Rod’s appeal of any suspension, A-Rod is a zero-time offender. Tread carefully, Bud.
As this story develops daily, A-Rod is looking more and more like an image-obsessed diva that feels he is above the law. He makes Barry Bonds seem reasonable and likeable. With Barry, you knew what you were getting. He didn’t mince words, knew what he wanted, what he needed to do to get there, and didn’t give two shits about what anyone thought. With Alex, it’s like he hired a (very bad) political strategist to create this persona of a naïve ballplayer who innocently stumbled upon PEDs. Are they both narcissistic? Of course, but Barry never tried to hide who he is
Where will this end up? Who knows. If MLB gets its way, A-Rod will never suit up again. If the Yankees get their way, they can void A-Rod’s contract. If A-Rod gets his way, he gets to play again and continue his homerun quest (there’s a nice $6 million bonus if he passes Willie).
To boil it down: it’s all about the money. Forget the records, the hall of fame, the glory of the game. The real fight is all about the benjamins (baby). The Yankees owe A-Rod $114 million. That money is guaranteed…unless MLB suspends him. The Daily News writes that A-Rod’s plan is to play at least one game, and then retire based on the hip injury, thus guaranteeing the remaining $114 million. He’s desperately doing everything he can to get ahead of the impending suspension, while the Yankees and MLB are doing everything in their power to thwart him.
Who’s going to win? Who should we root for? It’s tough when everyone in the equation is the villain. A-Rod doesn’t deserve the money, the Yankees don’t deserve to be let out of a dumb contract, and Bud Selig doesn’t deserve to look like the hero (he’s no RGI).
One thing that is clear: they’re all worthy of teabags.
Enjoy your teabag.