The numbers are impossible to ignore: Alex Rodriguez has played in 13 games this spring, and he has a hit in every one. He has six doubles, five home runs and he leads the Yankees with 11 RBI.
In spring training, though, teams are conditioned to look beyond the statistics.
“The way he’s driving the baseball is what you’re used to seeing from Alex,” Joe Girardi said. “And that you can’t ignore.”
Rodriguez came into spring training talking a lot about his health and his body. He dropped a few pounds and said he felt more flexible. There was no injury that required rehabilitation this winter, and so he trained through the offseason.
“One way or the other really wouldn’t be very surprising,” he said. “If I was hitting .100 or hitting .400, it’s pretty much the same thing. I’ve always said, I keep saying all along, that for me, I don’t put a lot of stock into spring training stats one way or another. But what I do put stock in is what happens pre and post game.
“For the most part, (hitting coach Kevin Long) and I have been very happy with our work, and so has (infield coach Mick Kelleher). I feel more consistent, a little more energized, and my body feels healthier.”