The MLB season is still very young, but that doesn’t stop the world from overreacting to every storyline! USA TODAY Sports’ Steve Gardner breaks it all down.
USA TODAY Sports
What if Alex Rodriguez signed his life-changing contract with the New York Mets — and never had the chance to get traded to that other New York team?
Asked about it on Sunday Night Baseball by play-by-play man Matt Vasgersian, the former Yankees slugger mused about how things might have turned out differently with him in a Mets uniform.
Rodriguez said he was a huge Mets fan growing up in Miami — and he now wishes he would have ignored the advice of agent Scott Boras and “make great concessions to go play for the Mets.”
Now … did he mean he would have played for less money or not been as demanding if he had an opportunity to play for the Mets? Or did he mean — as Mets GM Steve Phillips intimated at the time — he wanted his own merchandising tent … which would have made great concessions?
A-Rod’s comments during the Mets-Nationals broadcast came in the context of advice he might lend Bryce Harper, a free agent after 2018 who has the same agent now — Boras — that Rodriguez did in 2000.
That’s when Rodriguez signed a record-setting 10-year, $252 million deal with the Texas Rangers, admittedly took steroids for three seasons and then brokered, along with Boras, the blockbuster swap to the Yankees that resulted in his move to third base to accommodate franchise icon Derek Jeter.
Instead of deferring to Jeter, he could have been a cross-borough rival – though young A-Rod might have been far less likely than older, wiser A-Rod to take at least $100 million less to sign with the Mets than the Rangers.
Either way, an immeasurable amount of baseball history would have been altered, and Rodriguez’s comments did not go unnoticed. The Mets manager at the time, Bobby Valentine, apparently would have loved to have been able to write A-Rod’s name on his lineup card.
Follow Gardner on Twitter @SteveAGardner
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