Media must take blame for no Arod
With the Home Run Derby being in Yankee Stadium, baseball tried desperately to bring in superpower Alex Rodriguez to please the local fans. A-Rod declined, even after being asked again once Big Papi David Ortiz could not make it.
One does not need to look hard to figure out the reasons for Alex not participating in the Home Run Derby. He had everything to win with the Derby taking place in his stadium in the last year of it's existence. That said the only option for him was to win as anything less than that would mean A-Rod being cut up in the papers the next day. Especially with all the Madonna / Divorce news circulating with Alex.
This is where the 24 hour media circus ruins sports. Alex already knows that he's going to be followed around considering he plays for the Yankees, makes 250+ million, etc. But what a travesty it is that this player is so alienated that he does not feel comfortable playing in the Home Run Derby.
Worse yet, his game has not been suffering at all. Alex started off poorly to 2008 after an ungodly 2007 season. But after returning from the DL, Alex is back to his high end ways at the plate, with the average well over .300 and the slugging continuing.
Of course at the end of the day, A-Rod will get the blame for not performing. This is the media's fault though, as A-Rod is painted as a villain instead of the savior of 21st century baseball: an all-world talent clean as can be. This should be the poster boy for Baseball coming out of the Steroid generation, where players couldn't dream of putting up Alex's stats unless they were juiced. The guy puts up a .314 average 54 home runs 156 RBI 24 steals, yet we hear more about his marital life.