The Alex Rodriguez story continued over the weekend as various members of the World Champs (Millar, Arroyo and newcomer, Matt Mantei) had their say. Rodriguez spoke with reporters at Legends Field on Sunday and addressed some of what has been flying around of late. John Harper doesn't think Rodriguez is helping himself any, but Murray Chass holds the media responsible for all of this mishigoss:
One player, Trot Nixon, ignited the game with negative comments about Rodriguez last week and atorrent of teammates have followed. But the teammates' comments have not been unsolicited. They were at the urging of reporters eager to inflame the game to incendiary levels. They were all but handed a script.
Athletes have long accused reporters of creating stories, and, sadly, this is one of those instances. It has become one of the most distasteful instances I have witnessed in 45 years of covering baseball.
...This story has not seen its last chapter. Twenty-four position players will be in the Red Sox' camp tomorrow. That's 24 more players who can be asked about A-Rod.
No, make that 23. Kevin Millar showed up yesterday and was asked the obligatory question. It doesn't matter what he said in response. Just that he was asked was predictable and ridiculous enough.
Joe Torre is from the old school, and bemoans the current in-your-face culture of self-promotion and disrespect:
"As a whole, there is a lack of respect. It's unfortunate and I know that I speak for my generation, but it's reality. I don't know. It certainly is against the grain for me."
"I would like to believe when we win as a team, you understand how tough it is to win and you respect the other team that tried to beat you. You have to understand there is somebody else trying to do the same thing you are."