NEW YORK -- Joe Torre will be back with the New York Yankees
and it looks as though A-Rod will be, too.
General manager Brian Cashman said the team had no intention of
trading Alex Rodriguez, who failed to drive in a run in the
playoffs for the second straight year and was dropped to eighth in
the batting order.
"I fully expect him to be here," Cashman said Tuesday. "We're
going to figure this thing out together."
Earlier, Torre said he would return as manager for his 12th
Rodriguez, who has a no-trade clause in his contract, struggled
during his third season with the Yankees and was booed throughout
the year by fans at Yankee Stadium. Cashman revealed that teams
inquired about Rodriguez's availability up until the July 31
deadline to make trades without waivers.
"The first one I got hit on was late May, I think, or early
June and then it got real heavy in the deadline period," Cashman
Right after Saturday night's loss eliminated the Yankees,
Cashman received an e-mail inquiry from a team.
"I wanted to message back: 'Buzzard,'" Cashman said, adding
that he expects to receive more offers during the offseason and
intends to turn them down.
Rodriguez, the reigning AL MVP, hit .290 with 35 homers and 121
RBI, and his 24 errors were the most among AL third basemen. He
went 1-for-14 (.071) in the first-round playoff loss to Detroit and
is 4-for-41 (.098) with no RBI in his last 12 postseason games.
In New York, where the Yankees are always in the spotlight,
Rodriguez has at times seemed uncomfortable in a clubhouse filled
with other big stars. Torre said Rodriguez still feels the need to
be the central run-producer, even though he has powerful hitters
next to him in the lineup.
Even in an "off year" for Rodriguez, his run production was
among baseball's best.
"I know there would be interest in him. There's no denying
that. He's a very talented player," Cashman said. "Despite the
difficult times that he's experienced here, people see the results
and know that he's fighting not just the pitcher on the mound, he's
fighting a lot more than that at times."
After the Yankees were eliminated Saturday, Rodriguez said he
wanted to stay with the team.
He is owed, in effect, $66.6 million by New York over the last
four seasons of his record $252 million, 10-year contract.
Rodriguez receives $95 million, with the Yankees getting $28.4
million from Texas to offset part of that.
"Alex Rodriguez is one of the important pieces to this puzzle
here," Torre said. "He is a human being and there's a lot of
times that he's not perceived that way. The fact of the matter is
that he'll never be able to be compared to other people because,
probably, [of] the enormity of his ability."
Cashman didn't think Rodriguez was angry about being dropped to
eighth in the batting order in Game 4. He batted sixth in Games 1
and 2, and cleanup in Game 3.
"I don't know if there is an issue from Alex's perspective
about batting eighth. I haven't talked to him about it," Cashman
said. "I know one thing that we try to do is check all egos at the
door when it comes to who should play and when they should play,
where they bat."
Scott Boras, Rodriguez's agent, didn't return a call seeking
comment. Cashman said if there was lingering disagreement,
Rodriguez and Torre would have to settle it.
"If there is an issue with Alex, then they've got to make it
right," Cashman said.