It’s been well established that Alex Rodriguez’s roles in the ESPN and Fox Sports broadcast booths take precedence over his token role as a special adviser to the Yankees.
So when general manager Brian Cashman learned of Rodriguez’s recent comments favoring the Red Sox’s power duo of J.D. Martinez and Mookie Betts over the Yankees’ slugging tandem of Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton, he didn’t take offense.
Cashman gets it.
“He’s being paid a lot more by them to give strong opinions than he’s being paid by us,” Cashman told the New York Daily News prior to the Yankees’ matchup with Boston on Sunday night. “I think Alex is wearing a lot of hats. He’s now A-Rod Corp.
“Listen, he’s now transitioned from obviously being an excellent major-league baseball player to obviously being a dominant force in the business world. So with that, comes a lot of areas and all that time. He’s got time for us, but not as much time as maybe he’s got for others… I’m just happy that he’s available as a contributing member [of the organization], but he’s a man of many talents.”
On Friday, prior to the opening game of the series, Rodriguez was interviewed by the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo for a Q&A story. During the conversation, he discussed the star-studded casts on the Yankees and Red Sox, which currently own the best records in baseball.
When Rodriguez was asked about the lineups of both teams, he mentioned how Boston has the best duo in baseball in Martinez and Betts. His argument is more than fair, as Martinez, who signed as a free agent this past winter, leads the majors in home runs and RBI. Plus, Betts, who entered Sunday with a major-league best 1.110 OPS, is a legitimate MVP and Triple-Crown candidate in the American League.
Here’s what Rodriguez said about the rivalry, per the Boston Globe:
“If they played 100 times, you’d have one team win 51 and the other 49. The Red Sox have the advantage in the starting pitching and the Yankees have the advantage with the bullpen. While [Giancarlo] Stanton and Aaron Judge get a lot of attention, the Red Sox have the best 1-2 punch in baseball in Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez. If you asked the insiders in the game, they would put Mookie in the top three players in the game and that’s a hell of a compliment for a guy who goes under the radar. And the reason he goes under the radar is because he’s a consummate professional. He does everything really well and he gets better every year and he does it with class, elegance, and stealth.
“J.D. is becoming the top slugger in our game, a combination of power and run production and contact. He’s also a very good hitter. What the most impressive thing about him is, just about everybody who comes into a big market like New York and Boston, there’s an adjustment period. The whole first half of ’04 for me was a difficult one. It was a challenging time. J.D. hit the ground running. The one to credit here is Dave Dombrowski.”
Based on regressed winning-percentage calculations, the Red Sox are projected to finish the regular season with 102 wins, followed by the Yankees with 101.