Beyond the Bison

Julian Dorey, Senior Writer

Alex Rodriguez doesn’t get it. He never has—and I don’t think he ever will.

In 2009, A-Rod conned us for the first time after verified reports that he failed what was meant to be an MLB-confidential PED test back in 2003. After the immediate firestorm surrounding the revelations, A-Rod conducted a candid interview with Peter Gammons in which he admitted to past “mistakes”—and hedged his bets by calling the “culture” of PED’s “common.”

As if that made it OK.

Then came the painfully-awkward spring training press conference when Rodriguez awkwardly tried to avoid tears—pursing his lips and sipping micro-drops of his seemingly endless 16-ounce water bottle for what felt like hours. Consummate professionals like Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera were among A-Rod’s teammates sitting in the audience to listen to his official team-sponsored apology. Reporters there that day claimed that Rodriguez couldn’t seem to face the real music and look them in the eye.

After that day, life went on—for a while.

The Yankees won a World Series that season—and Rodriguez actually played a key role. After a few more seasons of decent play, Rodriguez seemed to have weathered the storm and fallen in line with the rest of the steroid-era convicts who were caught and herded like cattle through immediate-media backlash before their public shame morphed into more short-term memory loss on the parts of reporters and fans alike.

But then Biogenesis happened. In 2013, shady Miami-area doctor, Anthony Bosch was indicted in a drug sting for running what amounted to a steroid cesspool out of a South Florida Saul Goodman-esque storefront. In addition to local South Florida high school and college players and coaches caught in the crossfire of Bosch’s HGH-infused chop shop, prominent MLB players including Nelson Cruz, Ryan Braun … and Rodriguez himself emerged as known-Bosch-clients according to records seized from Bosch’s “office.”

Once again, one of the pre-eminent players to ever play the game was seemingly caught cheating the game he claimed to “love” and “respect.”

The details of his latest steroid escapades with Bosch were practically comical. Bosch would drive to A-Rod’s Miami-area mansion and administer needle-after-needle and substance-after-substance—all the while literally keeping a written ledger book to recount when and where he provided Rodriguez with drugs, and what those drugs were. For a powerful agency like the DEA, a paper trail like this is almost offensive.

So not only was old Alex giving the public at large a middle finger on a weekly basis—he was surrounding himself with one of the dumbest wannabe-criminals you’ll ever see.

After a year of aggressively fighting the accusations, publicly attacking all those “out to get him,” and appealing what was the harshest PED penalty in MLB history (handed down to him in August 2013), Alex Rodriguez finally gave up his battle—and whatever was left of his credibility—in January 2014. He called off his legal dogs and, by default, admitted that he had cheated.

Again.

And now, after serving a 200+ game suspension spanning the past two seasons, Rodriguez, his aging body, and his albatross contract are preparing to return to the Yankees this season. Only this time, A-Rod will have his tail completely between his legs—or so we would think.

With spring training less than a week away, J.R. Moehringer of “ESPN the Magazine” published a story on Rodriguez and his life away from baseball this past year. Rodriguez allowed Moehringer to spend time with him and took Moehringer pretty deep into his personal life and his broken mindset.

Frankly, the piece was brilliant. Moehringer even managed to draw my pity and empathy for A-Rod, the villain, at some points during his piece.

But at the end, my mind was clear. I had seen this story before. Whether or not it was in writing or on camera is beside the point. I had seen Rodriguez holding his hand out—begging for public understanding and forgiveness. I had believed it then.

But now? How can I? How can anyone?

Congratulations, Alex. You’re seeing a psychiatrist. And, what’s that? You’re spilling your soul to him? Wow, there’s some progress. And, also, good looks on returning to college to “humbly” live a lifelong dream of education. Not to mention, your agony over apologizing to your innocent, surely-to-now-be-ridiculed nine-year-old daughter—that really struck a chord with me.

However, Alex, none of that really matters. At the end of the day, sarcasm is all you’ll get from me. You’re a liar, you’re a cheat, and you don’t deserve to ever grace a baseball diamond again. You’ve had your chances, you’ve had your strikes—and now you’re out.

I’m all for second chances—but I’ll never believe a word that comes out of Rodriguez’s mouth again. He’s had his second chance. And his third, his fourth, and so on. He’s blown them all. I’m not even going to get into his decision to pass on the Yankees’ offer to apologize at Yankee stadium—in front of the very fans he has failed time and time again. File that one under the continually-building “Alex-Rodriguez-doesn’t-get-it” file.

At this point, A-Rod is done in my book—and he should be done in yours too.

(Visited 70 times, 1 visits today)