Monday, May 10, 2010

"Stick It, A-Rod"

Here you go A's fans. Despite the injuries that have plagued this team over the last several weeks after a strong start to the season, the A's still managed to hit the headlines yesterday in the form of A's pitcher Dallas Braden's perfect game.

There are several stories wrapped up in this one, which is why it is so intriguing. First, he threw the gem against arguably the best team going right now, the Tampa Bay Rays. Second, he threw it on Mother's Day in honor of his mother who had died when he was in high school. How about the fact that he was drafted in the 24th round, or that he has never pitched longer than the 7th inning in any big league start? How about that he is a native of nearby Stockton? How about that his grandmother told A-Rod to "stick it."

All these stories pail in comparison to the one that the national media has seemed to hook onto. The Braden/A-Rod Saga.

The dispute between the two was still hot going into Braden's start yesterday. His perfecto just fueled the fire a little more. Now it's out of control.

Was Braden right in calling out A-Rod? Eh, it's an unwritten rule that every ballplayer knows, and don't let them tell you differently, as Alex Rodriguez did. A-Rod knew exactly what he was doing. Don't forget, this is the same player who yelled at the 3rd baseman while trying to catch a pop-up, ans also the same guy who tried to swat the ball out of the 1st baseman's glove so he wouldn't be called out, thinking no one could see him. Ya know, the things kids who know him as the best player in the game should look up to.

The only problem I have with the whole Braden/A-Rod feud is who is Dallas Braden? Sure, the Bay Area knows him and now the nation is familiar with him. But before this, he was just some no name who wanted seemed to want some recognition for calling out A-Rod. Finally somebody did it, but it probably shouldn't have been Braden, or at least not made so public by Braden. It just made him out to look cocky by going after one of the best players on the planet, while Braden boasts 17 (make that 18) wins in his career.

Now, he is recognized, but for a much better reason, which is why this A-Rod feud carries so much punch now. And it will continue to carry punch until someone gets knocked out, or at least until the two players meet again. In which Braden will go head hunting for A-Rod's dome.

I honestly doubt the two will square off in the distant future. A-Rod will probably come down with the flu that day or something along those lines. He just seems like the kind of guy who would do that. And I wouldn't blame him. Hell, if a guy heaving 90 MPH wanted to decapitate me for breaking an unwritten rule that I clearly had knowledge of, I wouldn't want to be in that batter's box either.

But Braden will have to wait until the July 5th series in New York for that to happen, given it is his turn in the rotation. Maybe Braden will still be fuming on this matter, or maybe he won't, but he doesn't seem like a guy who lets things go easily.

All we know is this story suddenly has legs. Before the perfecto, Braden was just some looney trying to make a name, now he is the guy with the 19th perfect game in MLB history trying to right a wrong. It's crazy how a perfect game can instantly do that to someone.


  1. These two will meet again no doubt about it and there will be much media hype around it...but that's all it should come to. Dallas(I hate that name BTW)would be a punk for head hunting A-dud, I mean a-rod, and a-rod would forever be labeled a big pussy if he suddenly took ill and sat out the next time they should meet. Instead, the next time they do meet they should show professionalism(after all aren't they)and go Mano-a-Mano and prove things thru a pitcher/batter duel and then the media, as well as the two players, can move on to the next un-story. OWT!

  2. Honestly, that's wat should happen, not sure if it will. Yes, that's what professionals should do, but the fact that one side is unprofessional about the matter makes all the difference. A-Dud has forgotten about it, moved on. Unfortunately for him, and watever body part Dallas Braden decides to go after, Braden has not forgotten about it. And it is Braden's looney personality that will make him go after A-Rod and finish the issue once and for all.

    I sure hope it ends the way u say it should, but the fact is Braden is too cocky and unprofessional to let it go.