Count Alex Rodriguez among the many baseball fans who think the Houston Astros should have shown more remorse for the 2017 sign-stealing scandal. Rodriguez spoke about the Astros’ situation Tuesday, comparing it to the suspension he served during the 2014 season.
The biggest difference between the two, according to the 44-year-old Rodriguez, deals with how he approached the situation once he was able to return. Rodriguez said he was apologetic and contrite for “acting like a buffoon.” He doesn’t believe Astros players have shown remorse for their actions.
"I served the longest suspension in MLB history. It cost me well over $35M. And you know what? I deserved that."@AROD says the Astros deserve whatever comes their way after the lack of remorse they've shown. pic.twitter.com/AnezyIyhHa— ESPN (@espn) March 3, 2020
Rodriguez’s full comments read:
“I think the one thing that really has upset the fans is, you cheat, you win a championship. There is no suspension, there is no remorse. And the last one, I think, is probably the worst one. Because people want to see remorse. They want a real, authentic apology and they have not received that thus far
“From a guy who has made as many mistakes as anybody on the biggest stage, I served the longest suspension in Major League Baseball history. It cost me well over $35 million. You know what? I deserved that. And as a result, I came back, I owned it after acting like a buffoon for a long time, I had my apologies and then I went dark. I wanted my next move to be contrite, but I also wanted to go out and play good baseball and change my narrative. And the way you change your narrative is you have to be accountable.
“You’ve earned all this negative talk. You’ve earned whatever comes your way, including whether it’s hit by a pitch or negative press, you have divorced yourself from having the ability to protect yourself.”
Following Rodriguez’s suspension, he released a handwritten apology to baseball fans. In that note, Rodriguez took “full responsibility” for his actions. He vowed to put the issue behind him and “play some baseball.”
He did just that. In 2015, Rodriguez had a comeback season with the Yankees, hitting .250/.356/.486, with 33 home runs, over 620 plate appearances. Away from the field, Rodriguez wasn’t a jerk. It was a stunning turnaround, one that led to Rodriguez becoming a well-liked broadcaster once his playing days were over.
If Rodriguez was redeemable, it stands to reason that Astros players caught up in the sign-stealing scandal can one day work their way into the public’s good graces again. In order to do that, though, they’ll have to take the Rodriguez approach and own their mistakes first.
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