I’m about to head home from a predictably uneventful Joe Girardi press conference. I’ll have more notes and nuggets when I get back to my apartment and sort through everything, but there was nothing particularly revealing that came from this morning’s half-hour session.
As you might expect, a significant amount of time was devoted to questions about Alex Rodriguez.
Will Girardi have to repair his relationship with Rodriguez?
“Well, one of the things that I was taught as a boy and a young man is that there’s a consequence for every action that takes place. Some of them are going to be good. Some of them you’re going to have to deal with. I’m always worried about whatever move I make, how it affects the club, how it affects a player, anything. I think it’s something that, sure, I possibly might have to deal with more than I expected, but I possibly might may not have to deal with it at all. As we move forward, I’ll get a temperature on it, keep track of it and see how it’s going.”
Was Rodriguez fully healthy after he came back from the broken hand?
“I believe he was healthy, but if you look I believe, he had some struggles in the course of the season as well, if you look at his numbers over the whole season against right-handers. As players, sometimes you do have to make minor adjustments and you have to say, ‘OK, let’s evaluate why maybe I wasn’t as successful against right handers.’ And next year it could be completely opposite. And then you look at that as well. As far as health, I think he was healthy.”
Can Rodriguez be a prodictive hitter next year?
“Players have an opportunity, and when you’ve been a great player usually a pretty smart player, sometimes you do have to make a tweak here or a tweak there, or maybe you got away from what you were doing accidentally, and you say, ok this is the reason this was happening or that was happening. So, can Alex be a very good player again? Absolutely. I don’t have any question in my mind, because I think the desire is there. As far as being a heads up player, I think that’s there. As far as being a 45, 50 home run guy, we don’t see much of that in baseball at all. How many guys hit 40-plus home runs this year? Four, maybe five? So I don’t anticipate that’s going to happen, but I think he can be a very good player.”
What does Rodriguez have to prove to the Yankees everyday third baseman next year?
“I expect Alex to be our everyday third baseman. What’s he going to have to show me? That he’s healthy and ready to go, that’s the bottom line, that he has no concerns and we have no concerns about putting him out there every day.”
Associated Press photo