Yankees position players are scheduled to report to spring training on Wednesday. Alex Rodriguez showed up yesterday to start working out and running drills. Naturally, the New York Daily News, which has been leading the torches-and-pitchforks mob against Rodriguez for a long time, found someone who took offense to Rodriguez's early arrival.
The Yankees, who had expected him to show up on Wednesday, had no issues with A-Rod arriving on Monday, but team officials were fuming that he hadn't alerted them to his plans.
"He's learned nothing," said one baseball executive. "He's the same old guy. He just did what he wanted to do."
This is insane! Can you imagine the obloquy had Rodriguez dared to show up merely on time? I don't actually buy that the Yankees were "fuming" about Rodriguez's under-the-radar arrival, seeing as how it was specifically designed to avoid becoming a big story, and succeeded in that. The Daily News admits it served its purpose:
His early arrival did offset the expected media crush on Wednesday, as roughly 20 reporters and a handful of cameras were on hand at the minor-league complex to greet A-Rod, a fraction of what had been expected on Wednesday.
Instead, this is what it looked like at Yankees camp:
Look, it's going to be a weird year. Baseball fans will be split between rooting for Rodriguez to fail, because they hate him, and rooting for him to succeed, because it'll drive the Yankees crazy. The Yankees would probably love Rodriguez to have nothing left so they could justify cutting him, but at the same time might need him to be a middle-of-the-order hitter. The New York tabloids just want drama, and if it's not there—as it wasn't yesterday—they'll find it anyway.
Don't believe that last one? Compare what Mark Feinsand wrote in the Daily News piece quoted above and how he actually felt about A-Rod's first day back: