TAMPA, Fla.—Two vast groups of people surrounded Alex Rodriguez here on a Tampa path Monday afternoon, cleaved orderly in half by a white picket confidence fence.
The initial organisation gimlet bats, jerseys, cinema and, many important, pens. One by one they affianced their devotion to Rodriguez, voicing support in sell for autographs.
The second organisation wielded fasten recorders and video cameras, and they aren’t generally famous for being a many forgiving crowd. When Rodriguez was finished signing and chatting with a initial group, he incited to a other, about two-dozen members of a media, and for a initial time given he was dangling by Major League Baseball, answered questions about a events of a past dual years.
“There were copiousness of mistakes along a way,” he said. “I tremble infrequently when we demeanour during some of a things we did, though we paid my chastisement and I’m beholden that we have another opportunity.”
After a year of forced outcast from a game, Rodriguez arrived during training stay dual days before he was expected, and 3 days before a organisation is scheduled to reason a initial grave workouts of a spring.
After operative out among Yankee teammates for a initial time in over a year, he altered into a immature University of Miami tracksuit and ventured outward a complex’s fences to accommodate with fans and media. There, a 39-year-old backup infielder regularly apologized for creation vague “mistakes” in a march of his two-year conflict with Major League Baseball, a conflict that resulted in his being dangling for a whole 2014 deteriorate after violating a league’s process on performance-enhancing drugs.
“No mistake that I’ve done has any good answer, no justification,” Rodriguez said. “It’s unexplainable. And that’s on me. I’ve dug a large hole for myself, paid a price. And I’m advantageous for a lot of people, generally a commissioner’s office, a players’ union, a Yankees, to play a diversion that we love.”
Rodriguez, who has strike 654 home runs—fifth-most all-time—in his 20-year career, announced that he is not now holding PEDs, pronounced that he is peaceful to try personification initial bottom if a Yankees wish and vowed that there will be no severity with teammate Chase Headley, who is approaching to start over Rodriguez during third base.
Since position players don’t strictly news until Wednesday, Rodriguez gathering several blocks divided to a club’s minor-league formidable for his hearing after undergoing a earthy hearing during a team’s categorical trickery during George M. Steinbrenner Field. With usually a few teenager leaguers and coaches present, he played catch, took grounders during third base, and afterwards took about 70 swings of batting practice, attack several balls over a left-field fence, to a pleasure of a dozen fans fabricated to follow them.
‘I combined a large headache for a lot of people, so we don’t censure whoever is insane during me. we understand.’
“So far, so good,” Rodriguez pronounced after a workout. “This is a initial day. we think, for me, a time off benefited me and we feel healthy and prepared to go.”
Rodriguez faces an capricious accepting on Wednesday, when his teammates join him in camp. He is approaching to offer as a backup third baseman and quarrel for personification time during designated hitter. But it’s misleading how he will fit into a hall and an classification that have each reason to be heedful of him in a arise of his drug cessation and his lawsuits opposite a Yankees and a MLB players’ association.
Rodriguez pronounced he doesn’t know if a Yankees, as a group, are on his side. But it wouldn’t warn him if there’s enmity.
“I don’t know, you’d have to ask them,” he said. “I combined a large headache for a lot of people, so we don’t censure whoever is insane during me. we understand.”
General manager Brian Cashman, who butted heads with Rodriguez mostly during this two-year saga, downplayed a disloyal player’s return, portraying it instead as behind to business as usual.
“From a ball operations standpoint, he’ll be entrance in with everybody else,” Cashman said. “He’ll be in his attack group, and he’ll be in his fielding group, and stretching and all that things on a conditioning side of it.”
Cashman pronounced he wasn’t wakeful that Rodriguez was stating early until a media sensitive him on Monday.
Rodriguez hasn’t nonetheless met with manager
nor has he apologized to him, Girardi told reporters Monday. Girardi positively hasn’t solicited one.
“As distant as apologies go, we consider a many critical thing is for it to be sincere,” Girardi said. “You wish it to come from a player, where he creates a preference who and who not to apologize to. So we have not had a face-to-face speak yet.”
If Rodriguez wants to residence his teammates, and apologize to them en masse, Girardi pronounced he’s open to that. “It has to come from his heart,” Girardi said. “I’ll concede him to do what he feels is necessary.”
Apologies, addresses, questions: This is all only a commencement for Rodriguez, who will face both support and ire wherever he goes.
“At this point, I’m kind of used to it,” he said. “The good news is…I done a mistake, we served a large chastisement privately and professionally, now all my concentration is on 2015.”