Alex Rodriguez is probably wishing right now that having a "Single White Female-like obsession" was the worst verbal jab that was thrown at him this off-season. Instead reports of his positive steroid results turned today into "Christmas for Yankee haters" as they found a new nickname for him across the covers of local papers: A-Roid.
Rodriguez has not been heard from since deflecting Sports Illustrated's request for a response to the 2003 test results before they broke the story yesterday. He is said to be camping out in the Bahamas with friends, listening to his agent Scott Boras. Many have already called for A-Rod to step forward and confront the allegations head on.
When asked if he had ever taken steroids after the release of the Mitchell Report in 2007, Rodriguez denied it to Katie Couric and said, "I've never felt overmatched on the baseball field...(Since I was a rookie), I didn't have a problem competing at any level." Now there appears to be less truth in that than there is in Vindicated, Joes Canseco's book where he accuses A-Rod of being a known steroid user.
Many sports writers today seemed to pen columns with a lump in their throats as Rodriguez provided the last possible savior to come out of our modern era with batting records that would not have been tainted the way that ones surpassed by accused steriud users McGwire, Sosa and Bonds have been. Jayson Stark of ESPN calls A-Rod "the one man on the planet with the chance to resuscitate the greatest record in sports."
2003 was A-Rod's last year with the Rangers and there are not yet any accusations that he was juicing since coming to the Yankees. However, also included in SI's report yesterday were charges from three major leaguers that union executive Gene Orza tipped Rodriguez off to exactly when he would have to be tested while on the Yankees in 2004. And local writers haven't forgotten that none of this would be the Yankees problem right now if they had let A-Rod walk when he opted out of his contract last year, instead of Hank Steinbrenner chasing after him and essentially bidding against himself to keep the superstar around for another ten years.