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Great Moments in A-Rod Derangement Syndrome

Jul 5, 2013, 10:32 AM EDT

New York Yankees Alex Rodriguez watches from the dugout as the Yankees take batting practice in Minneapolis

Are you or someone you know irrationally fixated on the moral, ethical and public relations transgressions of Alex Rodriguez? Do you believe that actions most people would consider to be mere silly nonsense constitute capital crimes? Do you consider one of those bad acts to be him not being Lou Gehrig? Do you believe Alex Rodriguez is the only party responsible for him getting multiple nine-figure contracts? Did you have some interns compile a list of every single bad thing Alex Rodriguez ever did so you could paste it into your column as if it were a formal indictment?

If so, you are likely suffering from A-Rod Derangement Syndrome. Like this poor subject, Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York:

The objectionable part is that A-Rod is trying to portray himself as fighting the good fight, a noble man attempting to triumph over an army of haters. That is hardly the case. Just about every bit of the imagined “adversity” Alex Rodriguez thinks he is confronting is of his own making . . . He is the one who chose to live a high-profile lifestyle, and then complained about all the media attention it draws, sort of like the kid who kills his own parents and then begs for leniency on the grounds he is an orphan …

. . . None of these things, with the exception of the drug allegations, is a capital offense in itself. But taken together, they paint a picture of a man living a life of singular privilege, without boundaries or respect for any authority other than his own. Again, not a crime in itself. But to live that life of privilege and wealth and try to portray it as the equivalent of working on a chain gang? That is an insult and an affront.

Two equivalencies between A-Rod and murderers. A quotation of the word “adversity” when the interview to which Matthews is referring contains no instance of A-Rod using the term at all and a reference to A-Rod claiming he’s a victim or a prisoner when he did no such thing. An “A-Rod is no Lou Gehrig” framing device.

These are the symptoms of A-Rod Derangement Syndrome. A disease which is not fatal but which can, if gone untreated, lead to hackery and related complications which can render your journalism career a joke.

Please, get help. Before it’s too late. Before you’re suffering like poor Wallace is.

  1. Francisco (FC) - Jul 5, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    These are the symptoms of A-Rod Derangement Syndrome. A disease which is not fatal but which can, if gone untreated, lead to hackery and related complications which can render your journalism career a joke.

    Please, get help. Before it’s too late. Before you’re suffering like poor Wallace is.

    Craig, I’m supposed to write the Lair posts not you.

    • cur68 - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

      I think you’re getting to him, FC. He’s starting to blur the boundaries of your life and his. Before you know it, he’ll have a hairless cat and switch to rooting for the phillies.

  2. Stacey - Jul 5, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    So the guys in the New York sports media are annoyed because a player they spent most of their time bashing, belittling and trashing gave an interview to a national writer and won’t give them the time of day?

    Oh boo hoo.

  3. jayscarpa - Jul 5, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    “None of these things, with the exception of the drug allegations, is a capital offense”

    Dang. They’re really are going to get tough with the PED users.

  4. number42is1 - Jul 5, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    I used to suffer from ARDS but with help from family and doctors i was prescribed Fuckitall. With Fuckitall i was able to see that I was simply jealous of his success and was able to get passed it. THANK YOU FUCKITALL! You have changed my life for the better.

  5. bigharold - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:08 AM

    “… a noble man attempting to triumph over an army of haters.”

    I don’t know about the noble part but A-Rod certainly has a army of haters. With Generalissimo Wallace leading them.

  6. Old Gator - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:09 AM

    Before we had assorted drugs to help us sort out our various emotional and intellectual shortcomings, we used to call people who behaved weirdly “assholes.” Now we have all kinds of abbreviations and acrostics for their behavioral patterns, and a pill for each one. Sometimes, several. “Asshole” has been deleted from most of the popular medical dictionaries and replaced with letter-symbols for neurological and hormonal subfunctions, real and imagined. As the poststructuralists pointed out even before this paradigm shift occurred, there is no outside-the-text.To rewrite is to recreate. As if to say, if your neighbor’s kid is unmedicated, do you really want your kid playing with him?

    But now we have A-Roid Derangement Syndrome, another attempt, and a sorry one, to drive “asshole” further and further into a pocket of political incorrectness from which it will never return – kinda like backing the Honey Nut Cheerios wussybee into a Venus flytrap.

    However, if we want to be logically consistent, we can’t complete this discursive operation until there is a pill for A-Roid Derangement Syndrome. Of course, this engenders the conundrum of having to take an emotional or perceptual performance enhancing drug in order to qualify the syndrome as a real or imagined medical donnée. No matter. In the meantime, we can simply classify Wallace Matthews as an asshole and take substantial comfort from that. Given the lead time for a pharmaceutical to pass through various stages of testing, suppression of information about side effects, bribing of Food and Drug Administration officials and holistic testing to verify avoidance of strict empirical method, I suspect that Wallace Matthews is going to remain an asshole for a long, long time.

    • bsbiz - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:25 AM

      Gator, I believe there is a pill on the market to cure ARDS: It’s called cyanide.

    • bigharold - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:48 AM

      “.. another attempt, and a sorry one, to drive “asshole” further and further into a pocket of political incorrectness ..”

      You had to now that once you couldn’t call people “retards” anymore that asshole was next. First retard, .. now asshole, .. next douche bag. Where does it end?

      Soon I won’t be able to complete a sentence. I’m going to be friggin mute in no time.

      • psousa1 - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:08 PM

        Not ‘Douche Bag’?! Not without a fight from me! This is the most undervalued and usually the most spot on assessment of a deserving person.

        Justin Bieber
        Aarron Hernandez

      • cackalackyank - Jul 6, 2013 at 9:26 PM

        I’ve always tried to avoid using “douchebag” and “scumbag” as insults. Not because I don’t insult people… but because even “douchebags” and “scumbags” have their uses. My favorite top flite insult is to call someone a “USELESS piece of ****”, and that is certainly not A-rod. HE provides entertainment.

  7. unclemosesgreen - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:21 AM

    By the time water travels from the top of the watershed down to the Gulf of Mexico it’s estimated to have passed through at least 5 assholes.

    • Old Gator - Jul 5, 2013 at 3:26 PM

      Only five?

  8. stex52 - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:22 AM

    News flash, people. There is no IQ test for being an ESPN commentator. I was stuck with listening to several of them yesterday as a punishment for loving baseball but no wanting to pay for a premium service.

    Their job is to fill the airwaves or the print space. Quality is not required. And some of them figure that a little moral outrage will get heads nodding among the great unwashed masses. Nothing is safer than attacking A-Rod for the moment. Those guys are probably praying he doesn’t go away anytime soon. Because then they might have to do some real analysis.

  9. micknangold - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:53 AM

    Oh wow the media blows things out of proportion? I’m shocked! Do they do that to the Jets too?

  10. coloradogolfcoupons - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:56 AM

    The truth of the matter…in ALL sports, not just baseball…and about ANY player, not just A-Roid…is that when they can help you win, they are cheered wildly no matter WHAT they have done, be it drugs, beating their wife, murder allegations….doesn’t matter. But the minute they stop helping, the boom is lowered, and I used ‘boom’ because it has ‘boo’ in it. Make no mistake, if Arod came back and started pounding the ball, driving in runs, and helped the Yanks win the East, the same a-holes in the press, fans in the stadium, ex-wives and GFs…all of them would magically forget his sordid PED past, Jeter-bashing, Madonna-humping, mirror-kissing, and cheer his ass. The press would fawn over him, like Giant fans did when Bonds was growing a size 12 head and had more acne on his back than I have hair on my head. Steve Howe was busted for Cocaine 7 times and had a job every time he came out of rehab. Ray Lewis and his Super Bowl murder investigation? Nobody cared because he could tackle. If Aaron Hernandez is acquitted, he will have a job offer 3 minutes after the judge pounds the gavel and announces ‘not guilty’ That is our society, and we get Arod and others like him as a result. We pay teachers a sub-poverty-level wage and give Aholes a quarter BILLION dollars. It is no wonder players will always cheat if they think it will make them rich. Our society will forgive anything if you score touchdowns or hit home runs…but will turn on you like a Tiger eating its young if, God forbid, you go bad at the plate.

    • bigharold - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:17 PM

      All true. If Michael Vick can fess up to killing dogs for sport and yet still sign a 100 million dollar contract, .. 40 mil guaranteed, it tells you all you need to know about how we view athletes.

      • number42is1 - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:38 PM

        But killing dogs isn’t nearly as bad as taking roids…

      • Old Gator - Jul 5, 2013 at 3:27 PM

        Killing dogs is bad. Children are horrible.

  11. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Jul 5, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    Holy crap! I get to copy and paste my commend from the Chris Davis article.

    It’s pathetic, irresponsible “journalism”, obviously aimed at selling newspapers and generating page views. And if these morons are not careful, they’re going to get hit with a big fat lawsuit. It’s the exact thing that the newspaper industry claimed the bloggers were going to do just a few short years ago. There used to be standards in this industry, and increasingly so, the industry is becoming filled with hyperbolic morons who will print anything just to sell a few papers. This is why the industry is dying, and at this point, I say good riddance.

  12. braddavery - Jul 5, 2013 at 3:47 PM

    Craig defending A-Rod because he is/was a PED user. lol This stuff is great. I know you guys don’t believe me, but nearly every post Craig makes bends in some kind of favor of PED users, whether it’s blatant or subtle.

    • Stacey - Jul 5, 2013 at 4:26 PM

      He’s defending A-Rod because Wally Matthews is a hack.

      • braddavery - Jul 5, 2013 at 4:28 PM

        No he’s not. I read almost all of his posts. It’s just par for the course to take the side of a PED user and/or slam someone who talks against them in any way, shape or form. He does it relentlessly, not just once in awhile.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 5, 2013 at 5:00 PM

        No he’s not. I read almost all of his posts.

        It’s doubtful you read them if you think all he does is defending PED use/users.

      • braddavery - Jul 5, 2013 at 9:05 PM

        Oh, you thought I meant literally ALL his posts? I thought it was implied that I meant posts pertaining to PEDs and PED users. I do read almost all his posts and I was commenting on the ones related to my statement.

  13. protius - Jul 5, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    Wallace Matthews is a petty, self-righteous prick.

    Bob Nightingale’s interview of Alex Rodriguez, discussed two issues: A-Rod’s efforts to rehabilitate his surgically repaired hip, and his thoughts about the Biogenesis scandal.

    Matthews’ interpretation of the conversation, mingled A-Rod’s feelings about the former with his feelings about about the latter, and rendered an absurd, inaccurate commentary that badly missed the point.

    Most of A-Rod’s sentiments expressed his willingness to undergo an intense, rehabilitation schedule to get back into playing condition, and make a positive contribution to the Yankee’s regular season, and hopefully, help them get into the playoffs.

    A-Rod explained that his resolve to return to baseball, was strengthened by the doubters who questioned his perseverance, and his desire to dispel the “constant barrage of wild accusations and rumors” concerning his involvement with Biogenesis. Matthews felt that it was proper to misrepresent Rodriguez’s effort to play again this season, and clear his name, as an ignoble fight against his critics. In reality, if A-Rod did not challenge his critics, he would be tacitly agreeing with them.

    Nightingale describes the rigors of A-Rod’s rehabilitation program as a “grueling,” physical challenge, but Matthews chooses to ignore Nightingale’s insight, and instead, he used A-Rod’s lifestyle and his past use of PEDs, to insinuate that Rodriguez’s critic’s allegations, are indeed valid. Realistically, Matthews’s accusations are baseless without proof; meer speculation. They amount to nothing more then an argument by assertion, i.e., they are true, because he says they are true.

    A-Rod has never portrayed himself as infallible, quite the opposite; he has taken responsibility for his PED use, while knowing that harsh criticism would haunt him for the rest of his life. Matthews seems oblivious to this reality, in fact, he puts himself above humanity, and feels justified in judging A-Rod’s life, solely on the severity of his mistakes. Clearly, sanctimony is not Matthews’s only character flaw.

    Matthews would have his readers believe that Rodriguez’s interview with Bob Nightingale, was an attempt to reinvent himself. However, a careful reading of the Nightingale’s observations, and A-Rod’s remarks will not support Matthews’ perception of a man denying his past. Rather, it shows a man who is aware of his personal failures, and is doing his best to deal with them. Matthews, on the other hand, has shown that he is bereft of personal awareness and professional integrity.

    Matthews’ rant revealed his pious, egocentrism, i.e., he thinks that he is better than Alex Rodriguez. Moreover, he did not hesitate to use exaggeration, distortion and subjective analysis to misrepresent Nightingale’s firsthand account of Rodriguez’s remarks.

  14. johnholly1039 - Jul 6, 2013 at 10:06 AM


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