From Sam Donnellon -
ON THE FIRST DAY of a recent homestand, Alex Rodriguez walked into an already bustling Yankee Stadium clubhouse and found three reporters waiting at his locker.
“Be right back,” he said, and given his past good relations with the media, there was no reason to doubt him.
He returned 40 minutes later, but this time with an iPod in his ears, trying to pretend the three men standing in the same spot had disappeared. At one point, a clubhouse helper held the iPod while he dressed, and the iPod remained in his ears for the next 3 1/2 hours as the Yankees waited out a rain delay that eventually became a cancellation.
If not for the intercession of a Yankees publicist that resulted in a brief and unrevealing 5-minute session, Rodriguez likely would have claimed the record for the longest blow-off by a major league ballplayer. More noteworthy is that the Yankees’ third baseman was once considered one of the game’s good guys, expansive in his answers, respectful to his inquisitors, polite and engaging.
Now the man most likely to leapfrog over Barry Bonds as the all-time leader in home runs is often guarded, occasionally hostile, and purposefully unenlightening.
“I’m having as much fun as I can, trying to keep it simple,” he said that day. “And I really don’t give a [bleep] about what most people are thinking or saying.”
Yeah, it sounds like Alex just loves it in New York.
I laughed at the description of a clubhouse helper holding Alex’s iPod while he dressed. Man, that’s really getting the Prince Akeem treatment.