Alex Rodriguez recently became the first player in MLB history to have 35 home runs and 100 RsBI in 12 consecutive seasons, surpassing the Bambino’s previous record. Of 11.
His response on being told of the feat after the game was, “Anytime you can do something like that in a Yankee uniform is special.”
Number of times A-Rod can do “something like that”: one. He now has the record. If he does it again next season, he’ll still have the record. If he doesn’t, he’ll retain the record until someone goes to 13. But since no one is particularly close–deeply thorough research shows David Ortiz has four, though that’s likely to come to end this year unless he starts coating his bat in flubber, and Ryan Howard is next at three–that can’t happen for at least a decade, at which point I’m guessing A-Rod will probably be in a serious nosedive productionwise to the point that I don’t think he’ll string together 14 35hr/100RsBI seasons beginning at the age of 44. So essentially, the “anytime” is one time, which is this time, right now.
For a lot of reasons, athletes have difficulty articulating anything meaningful on their own achievements. They’re typically stuck in some LaLooshian middle ground of noncommittal cliches. A media that moralizes about boasting or brashness discourages them from being vocally enthusiastic about the thing they have dedicated their lives to and, presumably, love.
That leaves us, I guess, to do it for them. So, congratulations, A-Rod, on one more exemplary season in a Hall-of-Fame career.
Now go play some golf.