Two days into the Alex Rodriguez era in Texas, and already some
people have gone completely insane.
In two games, Rodriguez is 3-for-8, all singles, with no walks and four
strikeouts. He’s stolen a base and made an error, and had an embarrassing
moment or two in Sunday’s game in Puerto Rico. One way to look at his
performance is that he’s hitting .375 and has turned a couple of double plays.
Unfortunately, everything Rodriguez does now is looked at through a lens, a
green lens with the number "252" stamped on the side. To make
things look good through that lens, Rodriguez is going to have to be not
only the best player in baseball, but he may have to be nearly flawless to
satisfy some people. That’s an absurd expectation, and a badly distorted lens.
Alex Rodriguez is a great baseball player, possibly the best in the game
and certainly on track to be an inner-circle Hall of Famer. The money
invested in him by Tom Hicks doesn’t change his ability on the baseball
field one bit. It certainly doesn’t give him an immunity to the reality
that in baseball, hitters fail more often than they succeed, or that over
the course of a long season, everyone, even the very best players, are
going to have three-strikeout days or trip over their own feet.
Two games, eight at-bats, are completely insignificant, and need to be
treated as such. Shatter the lens, folks, and appreciate greatness in its
A couple of miscellaneous notes I want to tack on here:
- Many of you are familiar with the Web site RotoNews.com, with which BP
has had a great relationship for years. For a variety of reasons, that site
is no more, but the people behind it have launched a new site,
RotoWire.com. Same staff, same great
information, same sense of humor, just a different URL. Check it out.
- There’s also a fun little thing being done by the people at Total
Sports, including BP’s Greg Spira. It’s called
they give away baseball books from the Total Sports catalogue as part of
their site. I highly recommend the site as a fun stop every day.
Joe Sheehan is an author of Baseball Prospectus. Contact him by