Yankees star Giancarlo Stanton would’ve heard some harsh words from A-Rod if he were listening to the ESPN broadcast of Game 1.
Highly-paid superstars with cumbersome contracts and Hollywood styles, whose deals the Yankees took on in an effort to provide “cap relief” for the league’s lesser franchises? Yeah, it’s no wonder that Giancarlo Stanton and Alex Rodriguez are often compared.
Stanton’s so-called “postseason failure” (2018, and portions of 2019) has only added to the overall picture.
But Rodriguez, calling Game 1 of the Wild Card series on ESPN, had no sympathy for his modern Yankees doppelganger. In fact, he outright advocated for the opposing pitcher, ace Shane Bieber, to pitch around Luke Voit in an effort to get to Stanton and make things easier on himself.
Imagine saying that in 2017? But also … imagine thinking, in 2020, that Rodriguez wasn’t right?
Stanton has fulfilled the “prophecy” early on in Game 1, striking out twice in the first five innings of play, and certainly providing less resistance than Voit, who ripped a RBI double to the gap just ahead of Stanton’s second rough AB.
Rodriguez finally came alive after years of moribund play in New York with a redemptive postseason in 2009, featuring a few late-and-close homers Yankees fans will never forget. But he likely holds a grudge against the fanatics in the Bronx for calling him an overpaid choke artist for so long.
You’d think, then, that he’d be a little sympathetic to the plight of his newest proxy? Nah. He let one slip live on television.
The ESPN broadcast has been, as expected, rough thus far, but this little nugget of truth from Rodriguez amid a sea of inaccuracies has not gone unnoticed.
Add in A-Rod saying a curveball that hit the strike zone from Gerrit Cole shouldn’t have been called a strike because it was a big curve instead of a fastball (??), and you’ve got yourself a classic Bingo Card full of weirdness.
But in the case of Stanton, Rodriguez is unfortunately correct at this moment. Everyone else on the roster hit Shane Bieber. Stanton did not. You can pitch around him.