The New York media would have you believe that Alex Rodriguez is the most important person in Yankees spring training this year. Don't believe me? Here's proof:
@anthony_scotto that's like telling the White House press corps to stop covering Obama— wallace matthews (@ESPNNYYankees) February 27, 2015
Because apparently A-Rod is the president?
@BobKlap only story? How about closer? Didi? Refsnyder? Prospects? Tanaka? CC? Rotation? Beltran? McCann? Teixeira? New coaches? Dellin?— Jason Cohen (@Jason00Cohen) February 27, 2015
It feels like some New York-based journalists have gotten lazy over the years and Alex Rodriguez just makes it easy to write columns, because they couldn't be more wrong about this. Not only is he not even close to the most important person on the team when discussing their 2015 success, but there are far more interesting story lines going on in camp this year as well.
Now they want you to think that the team's spring opener is also all about A-Rod because he won't be playing in it:
Alex Rodriguez won't play in New York Yankees' spring opener http://t.co/ToYap2z0AO— ESPN New York (@ESPNNewYork) March 2, 2015
This is obviously all based on the fact that the team released the list of players who will be traveling to Clearwater for the first spring training game of the year and Rodriguez wasn't on it:
Travel roster for tomorrow's game in Clearwater. Red means you're on the bus pic.twitter.com/rJv1BSdw31— wallace matthews (@ESPNNYYankees) March 2, 2015
But you know who else won't be traveling over to face the Phillies? Almost all of the team's projected starting lineup. Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury will be the only ones there. You know what's a bigger story? How about the fact that Carlos Beltran won't appear in a game for another five days because they don't want to break him too quickly? What about Mark Teixeira, Didi Gregorius, Chase Headley, Stephen Drew, and Brian McCann? No one in the projected starting rotation will be there, since Adam Warren is getting the start. Zero of the locks for the 2015 bullpen will be attending either. It's almost like this is spring training and these things don't matter.
If we want to talk about the importance of the roster in Clearwater, there are plenty of storylines surrounding the players who will actually be there. Greg Bird could be the starting first baseman. Rob Refsnyder could be the starting second baseman. We'll be getting our first look at Chasen Shreve. Luis Severino, Jacob Lindgren, and Tyler Webb will all make an appearance. The battle between John Ryan Murphy and Austin Romine will begin. Aaron Judge, Jake Cave, and Tyler Austin will all be in the outfield. Are these storylines as headline-happy, drama-filled, and controversial? No, but they aren't completely overplayed and nauseating at this point.
Oh hey, it also turns out A-Rod will make his debut soon anyway:
Girardi said A-Rod will play in Wednesday's game, and will DH. Might see some work in the field next week. #Yankees— Brendan Kuty (@BrendanKutyNJ) March 2, 2015
It's like we made a big deal about nothing. Let's calm down and enjoy spring training for the real reasons we enjoy spring training; it's not for the circus.