Of course he isn’t.
Why would Alex Rodriguez retire, when he has $114 million over the next five years committed to him by the pockets of the New York Yankees?
More importantly, why would arguably the game’s most self-centered athlete simply roll over in the face of a pending, drawn out divorce with the team that will pay him until he’s 42-years old?
After a report came out linking the player to a PED provider, the opening salvos from the so-far silent battle between the Yankees and Rodriguez were fired yesterday, with various reports and sources suggesting that the team would explore every venue possible to rid themselves of A-Rod’s albatross contract. The team would try to get the league to void it, they would try to have the insurance company pay for it, and they would simply hope that Rodriguez’s health would cause him to step away from the game. The Yankees want a clean break.
Today, the return salvos landed.
According to a report by Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports, sources close to Rodriguez’s camp have said that the 37-year old has no plans on retiring, and that he is working “diligently” to return to the field as soon as possible. His doctor has suggested that the third baseman could return to the team as early as mid-summer, although that is by no means a sure thing at this point.
So, no, Rodriguez will take the field, and there’s nothing that will sway him from it. Whether he will contribute to the team or not is another question, but even that seems somewhat irrelevant here.
That, as I said, is wholly expected, and is by no means any sort of game-changing statement of hostility. What it is though, is a measured response, having come out just in time to counter to suggestions that the team would want him to retire. Like Rodriguez’s prepared statement of denial about the claims in the Miami New Times, it sets up could be to come in the future for both parties, particularly when the league releases the results of its investigation on the matter.
Theses are just the opening exchanges, after all, and not even ones being put forth directly by either the Yankees or Rodriguez himself.
The real fireworks have yet to come.