This has already been a very weird yet historic day in baseball. The announcement of the 13 Biogenesis-related suspensions will be one of those things people talk about for years, as well Alex Rodriguez’s record 211-game suspension. The only longer suspensions in history were the lifetime bans handed to Pete Rose and the various 1919 Black Sox players. That’s it.
And yet, A-Rod will play in tonight’s game, his first of the 2013 season. The appeals process is an amazing thing. The hip surgery is in the past, the quad problem is in the past, the suspension announcement is in the past … now we can focus on baseball for a few hours. The Yankees have gotten the absolute worst production in baseball from their third baseman this year, so even a hobbled, diminished, and shamed A-Rod figures to improve the team quite a bit. It’s crazy to think that after all this nonsense, the Yankees are a better team right now than they were when they woke up this morning. Baseball is weird sometimes.
Here’s the lineup that will face former Yankees farmhand and left-hander Jose Quintana. Fittingly, he was suspended for the entire 2007 season in the minors for PED use:
- CF Brett Gardner
- DH Alfonso Soriano
- 2B Robinson Cano
- 3B Alex Rodriguez
- 1B Vernon Wells — yep, first base … because this day wasn’t weird enough
- LF Curtis Granderson
- RF Ichiro Suzuki
- SS Eduardo Nunez
- C Chris Stewart — phew, I was worried Austin Romine would play again
And on the mound is left-hander Andy Pettitte. He, of course, admitted to using human growth hormone while with the Astros a few years ago. This really is a PED kinda day, huh?
It has been raining on-and-off all day in Chicago, but apparently there’s enough of a window to play a full game tonight. Hopefully that’s the case. Let’s just get this over with and go back to business as (mostly) usual. First pitch is scheduled for 8:10pm ET and can be seen on YES. MLB Network will probably cut in for A-Rod’s at-bats live.