Coming into the 2016 season, Alex Rodriguez sits at 687 career home runs. That puts him a mere 27 home runs shy of Babe Ruth while Hank Aaron lies well beyond with 755 (-68) and then there’s the second man in baseball we love to hate – Barry Bonds at 762 (-75) for A-Rod to strive for.
But this is not really about those numbers. Whether A-Rod finishes at 1,2,3, or 4 doesn’t really matter. He’s had a prodigious career………somewhat tainted of course………but still the numbers speak for themselves.
Instead, the real issue revolves around $$$$$$$. A considerable amount of money. His contract extends through next year and is incentive laden with “bonuses” when he reaches certain plateaus – some of which will be attainable this year.
Money! What’s it worth to Alex – and coupled with that an even more interesting question……what’s it all worth to the Yankees……….as well as Major League Baseball……..
According to Celebrity Net Worth , Alex Rodriguez has amassed $330 million over the course of his career in baseball. This does not include perks, endorsements, and business deals that probably increases this figure. Nevertheless, it would be fair to say that at this stage of his life, money need not be his biggest challenge.
Despite his behavior at times, Alex Rodriguez has always loved the game of baseball. And he may be too proud to admit it, but it would probably also be fair to say that he harbors a good deal of regret for some of the choices he made along the way, especially with regard to the ones he made when choosing “friends” that led him down the path to steroids. No doubt, his will always be a complicated legacy.
The deal that Rodriguez signed with the Yankees included a series of performance bonuses calling for A-Rod to have the chance to make $6 million each for tying Mays’ 660 homers, Ruth’s 714, Aaron’s 755 and Bonds’ 762, and finally by passing Bonds.
Last year as he approached Willie Mays, a controversy erupted when the Yankees threatened not to pay the $6 million. They also said there would be no hoopla if the tying or passing home run was hit at the Stadium. In a rare display of checking his emotions, Alex stayed quiet. In the end, the Yankees capitulated moving to donate $3.5 million to charities.
By the end of next year, there could easily be another $12 million on the table with the same conversation taking place over and over again. There should be no need for that. Both parties are rich beyond anyone’s imagination. So why do we need all the drama when this could all be settled and announced in the near future, if not now.
For both A-Rod and the Yankees, it’s a win win situation. Alex gets to add to rebuilding his reputation while the Yankees stay in good standing with the Players Association which was locked and loaded for a fight last year.
There’s one other thing though. When a man is convicted of a crime, he is given a sentence to serve. And since we are a nation of laws and not men, a man who serves his sentence has paid back society in full. Rodriguez received a one year sentence in the form of a suspension from all baseball activities. He served that sentence with barely a word out of him. A society that believes in law as the way to achieve order needs to move on. Today is a new chapter and the past has been (or should be) wiped clean.
A-Rod’s home run chase is a big deal for baseball and there is no way of knowing when the next opportunity will come or where it will come from. Giancarlo, Harper, Trout????? It’s a long long way to where Rodriguez is right now.
Therefore, baseball and in particular the Yankees would do well for the good of the game to shine a light on all of the milestones reached by Rodriguez. His teammates have said repeatedly that he is a role model inside the clubhouse and they universally welcomed him back last year. That’s good enough for me and it should be good enough for all of baseball………..
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