I had nearly forgotten about this, but on July 2, the Yankees’ season hung in the balance. The Yanks hadn’t yet pushed to within 5 of the Red Sox and 0.5 of the Wild Card, but there went A-Rod, limping off the field with a hammy problem. The Yanks’ season could have ended in July, but Rodriguez returned quickly. We breathed a sigh of relief.
However, things haven’t quite been the same. Look:
Statistically, the post-hammy injury is a small sample. It’s been just a shade over 100 at-bats, and A-Rod’s hitting around .250 during that time. It could happen to anyone at any point in the season over that stretch really. Additionally, during the last month, A-Rod’s had 500 on the mind. We know how he deals with the psychology of sports and competition. This slump could have been spurred on as much by that drive as by anything else.
But in the back of my mind, I can’t help but think that Alex Rodriguez, a tough competitor, just didn’t give his hamstring the rest it needed. Maybe I’m wrong; his stolen base numbers are right on par and his mobility in the field seems fine. Meanwhile the Yankees are winning and scoring runs without as much production from A-Rod as they were enjoying when he was all but carrying the team.
But I can’t stop thinking about that hamstring now that the memory’s been triggered. What if it’s still bothering him?