There is no denying that Alex Rodriguez‘s skills have diminished over the last few years. However, the superstar third baseman does a lot for the New York Yankees. Not only is he an intimidating force in the middle of the lineup, but he is a veteran player who draws fans to the stadium.
Rodriguez totes a career .299 batting average with 654 homers and 1,969 runs batted in; like him or not, pitchers have to respect those numbers. With A-Rod’s absence, the Yankees are missing a reliable glove and bat at third base. Rodriguez is a rare talent. Once he was healthy in 2013, fans around the league began to see what he still has left in the tank. Although he may lack the power he once had, A-Rod can still hit the ball in the gaps and drive in runs with the best of them. This is what the Yankees will miss most.
The team also loses a superstar that puts people in the seats. Attendance was down to just over 43,000 people a game in 2013. This was due mostly to lack of star power on the field for the Yankees. Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson were injured for most of the season, leaving Robinson Cano as the team’s only star on the field. People pay good money to see A-Rod play, and without him the Yankees may miss out on some ticket sales. Brian Cashman and the boys surely will not be pleased about this.
Alex Rodriguez may not be the talent that he once was, but he is still an excellent ball player. The Yankees’ front office is excited not to have to pay the money owed to A-Rod in 2014, but they are going to miss his presence in the lineup and on the field. Only time will tell how Rodriguez’s suspension truly affects the ball club.