Girardi calls A-Rod, emphasizes his value to Yankees
New York, NY, United States (4E Sports) – The New York Yankees have started reaching out to Alex Rodriguez, with no less than manager Joe Girardi calling the third baseman and emphasizing his value to the organization.
“It was a great conversation,” a source who had been given first-hand information by one of the participants told ESPN.com. “Joe could not have been more supportive, and Alex could not have been more receptive.”
The source said Giradi made the call, which lasted for more than an hour, the same day CBSSports.com reported that the manager made a call to the Yankee Stadium public-address announcer during one of New York’s postseason games requesting that Rodriguez’s name not be announced when the manager sent a pinch hitter up to bat for him.
“They’ve got a really great rapport,” the source said. “Alex said, ‘You’re the boss. You’ve got to fill out the lineup card. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.’”
Girardi made no apologies but underscored Rodriguez’s value to the Yankees lineup and laid out some expectations for his offseason training program, the source added.
“I think the team is fully aware that Alex holds all the cards here,” said the source, referring to Rodriguez’s remaining value on his contract. The Yankees owe Rodriguez a minimum of $114 million for the next five years with a full no-trade clause.
With Rodriguez batting just .120 (3-for-25) in the postseason, Girardi benched the All-Star third baseman in three of the team’s final playoff game and sent Raul Ibanez to pinch hit for him against the Baltimore Orioles.
Rodriguez was also reported to be flirting two women in the stands at Yankee Stadium after being removed from Game 1 of the ALCS against the Detroit Tigers.
But in a press conference after the Yankees’ postseason run ended, Girardi said he has some fence-mending to do with Rodriguez.
“I’m always worried about whatever move I make, how it affects the club, how it affects a player, anything,” Girardi said. “I think it’s something that, sure, I possibly might have to deal with more than I expected, but I possibly might 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.”