• The Coach That A-Rod Got Fired Delivers A Message

    Posted by on August 2nd, 2013 · Comments (13)

    Via Gari Meacham in her blog post entitled “Full Circle with A-Rod” –

    After spending thirty- two years in the game you begin to think that nothing will surprise you, but Bobby and I were surprised one cloudy morning in October, 2009 when we received a call from the Yankees general manager explaining that we lost our job as third base coach for the team we loved. He told us that Alex Rodriguez got us fired by complaining to the owners; citing he was uncomfortable with Bobby as a coach. We were stunned…

    Was it because I had consoled his wife (now ex-wife) and prayed with her about the struggles she was enduring in their marriage? (A week later he was publicly paling around with Madonna…) Was it because Bobby was closer to other infielders on the team and A-Rod felt threatened? Could he sense a spiritual tug as we covered him in daily prayer; only to get thrown under the bus by the very man we prayed for?

    Whatever the case, the fall-out from that firing was painful. We counted a financial loss of around 1.2 million dollars as the Yankees went on to win the World Series the next year, and had many playoff appearances and pay increases in the years to follow. We spent sixteen years in the minor leagues before landing that job, each of us working two to three jobs a piece to try and make ends meet. We knew our hope was in the Lord, but at times it was difficult to watch A-Rod garnish a string of titles and accolades. His stunning looks and baseball presence seemed to keep him exempt from the harsh winter of reality. Even after allegations of performance enhancing drug use stung his stellar record of accomplishments a few years ago–he seemed unfazed by consequence or regret.

    A few weeks ago the minor league team Bobby manages for the Toronto Blue Jays had a double-header with the Tampa Yankees. And there on third base was A-Rod, nursing a hip injury as he staged a rehab stint on his way back to the big league team. Bobby has seen A-Rod in passing over the years, but this visit proved to be more. A “full-circle” encounter if there ever was one…

    Alex’s eyes locked on Bobby as he moved towards the coaches box next to third base. As Bobby thrust his hand out to shake, Alex lunged forward into an awkward hug. The kind of hug that lasts a bit longer and holds a bit tighter than usual. A bit stunned, Bobby pulled back and looked Alex in the eye. As the pitcher took extra time to warm up, Bobby realized God was giving him the gift of time. Stolen moments to speak into this ballplayer’s life.

    “I’ve been praying for you Alex” Bobby said with a warmth in his smile. ”I know you’re going through a lot right now and I want to tell you something.”

    Alex remained frozen on third base. As if time stood still, Alex leaned in to listen. “All the things you’re going through right now (drug investigation by Major League Baseball and the threat of a life-time ban from baseball) it’s too much for you to handle on your own. Without God, you’ll struggle to make it.”

    Alex listened intently as Bobby continued. “I want you to know that you’re not alone. The Lord is with you, and He won’t fail you. No matter what you’ve done, or what lies ahead, He loves you.”

    Alex quietly lifted his voice as his eyes looked through Bobby; as if he was in communion with something Bobby couldn’t see. “I guess I’m learning what’s really important” he whispered. “You are,” said Bobby “so don’t forget what God teaches you.”

    File this under: A-Rod and Yuri meets Davey and Goliath?

    Comments on The Coach That A-Rod Got Fired Delivers A Message

    1. August 2nd, 2013 | 7:47 am

      H/T to Lisa S for the link. And, a “you were right” to #15

      http://waswatching.com/2013/06/27/a-rod-to-retire/comment-page-1/#comment-433484

    2. Scout
      August 2nd, 2013 | 8:19 am

      “Bobby and I were surprised one cloudy morning in October, 2009 when we received a call from the Yankees general manager explaining that we lost our job as third base coach for the team we loved. He told us that Alex Rodriguez got us fired by complaining to the owners; citing he was uncomfortable with Bobby as a coach.” So we are supposed to believe that Cashman had nothing to do with this, that it was ALL A-Rod’s fault? Cashman has a truly remarkable track record for only being responsible for the smart moves and good things that happen around the Yankee organization. He takes the Teflon leadership thing to a whole new level.

    3. August 2nd, 2013 | 8:28 am

      Scout wrote:

      Cashman has a truly remarkable track record for only being responsible for the smart moves and good things that happen around the Yankee organization. He takes the Teflon leadership thing to a whole new level.

      Yup. I’ve been saying that for years. He’s a corporate snake. Then again, so is the rest of the Yankees front office these days. And, that’s the problem. If the old man were still alive, people’s feet would be held to the fire. But, there’s no accountability in the Yankees organization any more. And, that’s why we are seeing what we have now.

    4. MJ Recanati
      August 2nd, 2013 | 9:09 am

      If the call to fire Meacham came in October 2009 then how did they count “a financial loss of around 1.2 million dollars as the Yankees went on to win the World Series the next year”? Does she mean October 2008 instead?

      #15 said this happened and it was pretty easy to figure out who the coach was.

      As for Meacham being fired…tales of his firing were predicted well before it happened in 2008. One of the common critiques of Girardi during that 2008 season was that he relied too much on his bullpen and third base coach (both holdovers on his staff from his season in Miami) and that the more senior coaches on staff weren’t happy about it. It was also seen as a warning to Girardi.

      http://yankees.lhblogs.com/2008/10/14/breaking-news-meacham-fired/

      http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/base-coach-bobby-meacham-yankees-offseason-moves-article-1.299569

      Reviews of Meacham’s performance during the 2008 were not good from what I recall.

    5. MJ Recanati
      August 2nd, 2013 | 9:34 am

      I might also say…yeesh…I’m very uncomfortable with people that talk about their faith so much.

    6. August 2nd, 2013 | 10:29 am

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      Does she mean October 2008 instead?

      I would guess so…not the first time a blogger had a typo.

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      I’m very uncomfortable with people that talk about their faith so much

      That’s why I agree with the person who said: Religion is like a penis. It’s fine to have one and it’s fine to be proud of it, but please don’t whip it out in public and start waving it around… and please don’t try to shove it down my child’s throat.

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      Reviews of Meacham’s performance during the 2008 were not good from what I recall.

      In any event, then, let management deal with it. When she wrote “we received a call from the Yankees general manager explaining that we lost our job as third base coach for the team we loved. He told us that Alex Rodriguez got us fired by complaining to the owners; citing he was uncomfortable with Bobby as a coach,” that was pretty clear…A-Rod bitched, said he couldn’t go exist with Meacham, and then he was gone.

      You would think that a player with A-Rod’s resume, ability, and “star” power would be able to perform on a team no matter who was coaching it, right?

    7. MJ Recanati
      August 2nd, 2013 | 10:34 am

      Steve L. wrote:

      would guess so…not the first time a blogger had a typo.

      Of course not. I make typos here all the time.

      Steve L. wrote:

      That’s why I agree with the person who said: Religion is like a penis. It’s fine to have one and it’s fine to be proud of it, but please don’t whip it out in public and start waving it around… and please don’t try to shove it down my child’s throat.

      I’ve never heard that quote before but I agree with it. It’s graphic and pretty gross but I agree with it.

      Steve L. wrote:

      You would think that a player with A-Rod’s resume, ability, and “star” power would be able to perform on a team no matter who was coaching it, right?

      To the extent that’s true — again, just because she and Bobby believe it, doesn’t mean that’s how or why it happened — tell that to every other star player that has had their boss fired (in any walk of life, not just sports). The perk of being a star is that you get to ask for things.

    8. MJ Recanati
      August 2nd, 2013 | 10:38 am

      Steve L. wrote:

      If the old man were still alive, people’s feet would be held to the fire.

      In a big-picture sort of way, that might be true. In this particular context, it’s totally disingenuous (and quite ironic) to cite Boss Steinbrenner as an image of the “good old days” when the context is a discussion of allegedly unjustifible termination.

      Boss Steinbrenner fired people for all sorts of reasons. Steinbrenner holding someone accountable for firing a coach without cause would’ve been the height of absurd comedy.

    9. MJ Recanati
      August 2nd, 2013 | 10:41 am

      Steve L. wrote:

      In any event, then, let management deal with it.

      They did. The reason given may or may not have been the truth, however. Rodriguez can ask for whatever he wants. To the extent his request is granted is something else.

    10. G.I. Joey
      August 2nd, 2013 | 10:46 am

      I’m going to go one further with this and say that not only am I uncomfortable about people talking about their faith so much, but I can’t stand it when ballplayers use it as an excuse for bad performance i.e Adrian Gonzalez in 2011, ““God has a plan. And it wasn’t God’s plan for us to be in the playoffs.”

    11. MJ Recanati
      August 2nd, 2013 | 10:52 am

      @ G.I. Joey:
      LOL, I had forgotten about that one.

    12. LMJ229
      August 2nd, 2013 | 11:54 pm

      So Cashman fired Meacham because A-Rod wanted him too? When did A-Rod become the boss of Cashman? I thought it was the other way around. Shouldn’t Cashman have just told A-Rod to shut the F*#k up?

    13. Ricketson
      August 3rd, 2013 | 12:44 am

      LMJ229 wrote:

      Shouldn’t Cashman have just told A-Rod to shut the F*#k up?

      The 5’3″ Cashman only has the [filll in the blank] to say something like that to a 6’5″ man when the latter is 1000 miles away rehabbing from a serious injury.

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