Is A-Rod Expanding?

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When your team loses 3-2, as the Yankees did last night to the Orioles, and you leave 10 runners on base, it doesn't come down to the fault of just one batter. But when you're batting 3rd and being what Alex Rodriguez is being paid, you're the one everyone points a finger at. And in this case, justifiably so.

Last night was positively embarrassing for A-Rod, who went 1-for-5, struck out twice, and left 5 runners on base. And this follows his three strikeouts in game one.


What's particularly embarrassing is that in some of these at-bats, Rodriguez doesn't even seem to be able to hit a foul ball.

Kevin Long is said to be the best hitting coach in baseball, but he seems utterly powerless to do anything about the hitch Rodriguez has developed in his swing. No one has been crueler - or more accurate - than ESPN's Stephen Austin, who this morning said of A-Rod's batting woes that, "We're not talkin' 98 miles per hour, his bat is so slow on 90-91 mph fastballs he ca't get round on that? And not only that he's startin' to look a little bit chubby, I'm telling' you right now."

Stephen A. is right. I hadn't thought about it, but now, looking at the replays of last night's game, I have to wonder: has someone put A-Rod's uniforms in a too hot drier? Or is he ordering from the same KFC as the Red Sox? Whatever the reason for an expanding Rodriguez and his shrinking batting average, it's about time Girardi considered sitting him down and playing Eric Chavez against right-handers like Miguel Gonzalez, who starts for the Orioles tomorrow in game three.


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