The Alex Rodriquez drama continues to play out, with the latest decision being A-Rod’s suspension spanning the entirety of 2014. As Jays fans, how do we feel about this?
Quite honestly, I’m not sure. On the one hand, if he is suspended for the entire year, the Yankees get a ton of money freed up and have a better chance at going after Tanaka, a pitcher the Jays could really use.
However, if he is suspended, the Yankees look really weak in the infield. With the loss of Robinson Cano, New York has an infield featuring Mark Texeira, Kelly Johnson, Derek Jeter and whoever plays third base. With Jeter coming off injury, and Texeira a big risk himself, the Yanks could use all the infield help they can get. If Rodriquez doesn’t play, it looks like they might go with Edward Nunez at third. But then what happens if Jeter gets hurt again? Brendan Ryan would be next on the depth chart. An infield of Nunez, Ryan, Johnson and Texeira? Yikes.
A-Rod helps the infield but hurts the team’s chances of acquiring Tanaka, which in turns helps the Jays’ chances of picking up the Japanese hurler (or any of the remaining pitchers, for that matter). So, as a Jays fan, would you rather have Rodriquez playing, and potentially a FA starter with Toronto, or a weakened New York infield along with a strengthened rotation?
It’s a tough call. But I still think I’d prefer, as a Toronto supporter, Rodriquez in the lineup and a better chance at acquiring a pitcher. Looking at the infield, even with Rodriquez there’s not a ton of depth. And you have to expect some injuries to crop up, perhaps even with A-Rod himself.
I guess, in my opinion, it all comes down to what gives Toronto a better chance at getting pitching help. Because, in the end, I think the Jays squad, with a Tanaka, Jiminez, Santana or Garza, can beat a Yankees team with or without the controversial slugger.