As of August 12, the playing career of Alex Rodriguez has come to a close. That’s what A-Red and the Yankees are saying, anyways. Alex Rodriguez says behind the microphones last week as he discussed the reasoning for the agreement both sides had come to, and how excited he was to remain a part of the Yankees organization while he helps mentor young Yankees. With players like Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, and Tyler Austin, along with established players like Starlin Castro and Didi Gregorious, this is a new wave of Yankees baseball as older veterans, and poor contracts are being phased out and moved along.
After the moves that the Yankees made at the trade deadline, ransacking the Indians and the Cubs, they are now being ranked as the top minor league system in Major League Baseball. This means that more young stars will be rising through the Yankees organization, and more opportunities for A-Rod to mentor young talent.
But this is Alex Rodriguez, here. He still believes that he can contribute to a ballclub. He’s only four home runs away from 700. If he were to leave the playing field completely now, it would be tough to imagine him not living with some regret for not accomplishing the milestone of 700 home runs.
Enter: The Miami Marlins.
It’s the ninth inning of the ballgame on Saturday between the Miami Marlins and the Chicago White Sox. After a hectic game, including multiple lead-changes between the two clubs, Giancarlo Stanton comes up to bat with two outs in the bottom of the ninth. He hits a shallow ball to right-center field, poorly played by Adam Eaton. Seeing an opportunity, Stanton decides to take the risk and head to second. He’s out by a mile, but tries to slide to the outer part of second base, his hips flail out to the side, and after he’s tagged out, he doesn’t move.
As it turns out, the Miami Marlins are going to be without Stanton for the rest of the season. Miami currently sits 8.5 games behind the first-place Washington Nationals, but they are currently tied with the St. Louis Cardinals for the second Wild Card spot. This is a team that is clearly still in contention for a playoff spot and need to find some way to replace Giancarlo Stanton.
Alex Rodriguez is not having a great season. He’s only played in 65 games this year, with a batting average of .200. He only has a .247 batting average, and a .351 SLG. But Miami needs some help. Rodriguez is not Giancarlo Stanton, and he won’t produce the same way that Stanton did. Rodriguez still has something to prove; he still has a milestone to accomplish. The Marlins need to find a way to hold on to their playoff spot. It would be a great match. The Marlins have a large Hispanic following in Miami, and they don’t bring a lot of fans to that big, new, beautiful stadium. Bringing in another Spanish-speaking player with a milestone looming on the horizon could bring more fans into the stadium. As long as the Yankees are on the hook for
The Marlins have a large Hispanic following in Miami, and they don’t bring a lot of fans to that big, new, beautiful stadium. Bringing in another Spanish-speaking player with a milestone looming on the horizon could bring more fans into the stadium. As long as the Yankees are on the hook for majority of his playing salary, this would be a low-risk move for the Marlins, as well as a way for A-Rod to stay on the field. The Marlins have a young core, which is who A-Rod enjoy being around. He would have a chance to serve as a mentor for some of the Marlins’ young core.
Plus, if the Marlins hold on to their playoff spot and with A-Rod on the roster, he would look like a savior as he gets back into the playoffs. This is something the Yankees won’t be doing this year.
The door would be open for A-Rod to pick up the mentoring gig at the end of the season if he was to go elsewhere, so this is a move that makes sense. A-Rod’s publisher has stated that A-Rod won’t be on a field again before the end of the season, but with A-Rod, it’s good to expect the unexpected. Alex Rodriguez used to live in Miami, so he has ties to the city; plus, he was recruited by the University of Miami when he was a young ballplayer before signing with the Mariners instead.
A final piece of this equation is Don Mattingly. Having spent time in Los Angeles with many high-profile personalities, who better than someone like Don Mattingly to manage Alex Rodriguez? Mattingly has put the Marlins in contention for a playoff spot, despite being without Dee Gordon for most of the season, and needs a piece in his lineup to keep them afloat. Mattingly would be a great option for A-Rod, should he decide to finish out the season in Miami.