At one point I was an Alex Rodriguez fan. I thought the guy was a shoo-in to break the all-time home run record.
Those were during his days with the Seattle Mariners and Texas Rangers, when he made up one-third of an amazing MLB shortstop trio that also included the New York Yankees‘ Derek Jeter and the Boston Red Sox‘ Nomar Garciaparra.
In 2004 Rodriguez signed a lengthy contract to join Jeter and the Yankees, making the move to third base — and seemingly taking on a whole new demeanor.
Perhaps A-Rod was always a little big-headed. It just didn’t seem as apparent when he was a big fish in a small pond.
Then again, the first of his three American League Most Valuable Player seasons took place with the Rangers in 2003, which probably makes such a belief a sham as it was later revealed that Rodriguez used performance-enhancing drugs throughout his three years in Texas.
Allegations have continued since 2009 when the 37-year-old admitted to taking steroids during the aforementioned time frame, but he still hasn’t been suspended, although he is believed to be the next big name to spend time sitting out due to the recent Biogenesis investigation.
Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun was the first star to pay the price, as he was suspended for the final 65 games of the season on Monday due to his involvement in the scandal. Rodriguez and several others are probably soon to follow, though some of them may not be suspended until next season.
None of them possess the numbers of Rodriguez, though, and if the Yankees slugger is forced to miss as many games as has been rumored — 100 or more — it will surely derail any chances he has of making a play at the home run crown.
Over the years, the once sure-fire Hall of Famer’s reputation has steadily declined, making it so that he may never be voted into Cooperstown.
And Mr. Braun likely won’t be enshrined either.