Unless you’ve been living under a rock you probably know that A-Rod and J-Lo have gotten engaged and social media (myself included) could not be more happy for both of them.
Yes you read that right — people are beginning to love A-Rod again. I’m a Yankees fan so I always loved Alex through the struggles and the success, but I understood why others absolutely loathed him. He used steroids, he was arrogant, he was a cheater, etc.
The baseball player in A-Rod was hated but the retired A-Rod is the one engaged to JLO, the one who is funny and charming, and the family man who spends time with his kids.
How did this happen though?
August 12th, 2016. This is the date of Rodriguez’s last game. In his first at bat he hit a double and the crowd went wild. It wasn’t the same as Jeter’s last game or as dramatic but he wasn’t like Jeter. A-Rod’s post game interview stuck by me all those years.
“… I’ve given these fans a lot of headaches over the years and I’ve disappointed a lot of people but as like I’ve said before you don’t have to be defined by your mistakes, how you come back matters too and that is what New York is all about.”
This is right before his two daughters ran across the field to hug him while the crowd was cheering. This is almost as emotional as Jeter’s walk off even though A-Rod’s moment was after the game and less-talked about in the press. A-Rod acknowledged that he messed up and he knew it was wrong.
This is when people started realizing maybe Alex isn’t a bad guy. Maybe just maybe he was a young baseball player who made stupid mistakes and was just trying to be the best player he could. I also believe the MLB used A-Rod as the face of the steroid era even though they were many other players that were caught up in it.
The last game wasn’t the only moment that changed the tide in A-Rod’s favor. He has told the story of finding out he was suspended and him just crying and asking god why. This is literally a scene from a movie. A-Rod was a superstar but in this moment he seems so normal and relatable. There are moments in everyone’s life where you wonder why me.
This moment reminds us athletes are humans and have feelings as well. So while you’re reading this: whether you loved or hated A-Rod the baseball player, ask yourself is it humanly possible to hate A-Rod the retired player?
The new A-Rod who visits business colleges and talks about A-ROD CORP to help college kids learn about entrepreneurship. The new A-Rod who makes J-Lo happy. This A-Rod is what people love. The one who’s taken a successful path to redemption.
P.S. A-Rod proposed in his 2009 world series ring (which he almost singlehandily led us to), which is the biggest power move ever.