On Friday, August 12th 2016 Alexander Emmanuel Rodriguez retired from the New York Yankees and from the game of baseball. For a player of his stature and pedigree, it was met with little fan fare from the sports writers and fans alike. Most pieces and conversation that did center on A-Rod’s retirement focused on his declining bat speed, abysmal batting average and overall inability to stay healthy during the rigors of a 162-game baseball season. The sporting public as a whole accepted these opinions as fact and went back to trying to figure out what the fuck happened to Barb on Stranger Things.
This is not the reason A-Rod retired.
To get to the truth of the Rodriquez retirement, you first need to take a general look around the league and the truth will become clear. All across the league this year, star-caliber and solid rotation players have seen an extreme dip in form that has no discernable reason. Reigning NL MVP Bryce Harper has seen his batting average go from thundering .330 to a non-descript .249. Yasiel Puig, the once future of the LA Dodgers and all around terror for pitchers everywhere has fallen so hard that the Dodgers actually can’t give him away. The Mets young, stud pitchers have been decimated by freak injuries and loss of velocity (and control on the hurlers that can stay healthy). Not to mention young outfielder Michael Conforto, a key piece of their World Series run last year, falling off a fucking cliff this year and landing back in the minors. All taken individually, these can be taken as simply the ebbs and flows of what happens to ballplayers over their careers. But when taken together, a second narrative emerges:
These players have had their talent stolen.
I take you back to the mid-90’s and a different sport. A string of similar drop offs hit a slew of NBA stars (and Shawn Bradley). Rumors ran rampant about the reason. Players refused to suit up for fear of being next. They fumigated the arenas. Players went to shrinks to attempt to salvage their careers. These stars (and Shawn Bradley) did not just become your normal washed up NBA players, but lost all their ability to play the game of basketball. Charles Barkley was so bad that children actively questioned if he was Charles Barkley on playgrounds across the nation. Eventually around the time of Michael Jordan’s return to the NBA via the famous “I’m Back” fax, these other stars (and Shawn Bradley) all snapped back into shape and became the stars that we all knew they were. (Except Shawn Bradley, who snapped back into being, well…. Shawn Bradley.)
Rumors have always persisted that there was some nefarious and diabolical reason behind the seemingly in-explainable “Insta-Washness” of these 4 NBA stars (and Shawn Bradley) and we here at Water Cooler Sports can now confirm that these rumors are true. These players had their talents stolen by cartoon alien amusement park employees from Outer Space. I know that this sounds hard to believe but our reporting shows that these cartoon aliens stole these NBA players talents in order to win a basketball game against the legendary ToonSquad, a collection of adored children’s cartoon characters that included Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck, with the freedom of the Toons hanging in the balance. Water Cooler Sports reporting also shows that the one and only Michael Jordan was enlisted by the ToonSquad as a player/coach to help defeat these aliens and retain the Toons freedom. It was MJ (and a last second assist from Bill Murray of all people) who hit the game winning shot to vanquish the cartoon carnies, retain the Toons independence and also get the talent back of some of the NBA’s biggest stars (And Shawn Bradley). The MonStar’s eventually turned on their old boss, Mr. Swankhammer and sent him back to Moron Mountain, where he never threatened anyone ever again.
Except that last part is false.
Mr. Swankhammer is back.
And this time he’s taking it from the hardwood to the diamond.
The clues are all around us. Another rash of in-explainable “Insta Washness” is sweeping through relatively healthy professional athletes. A former NL MVP has just recently been reduced to being a medal rack. A Cy Young candidate so confused that he’s openly questioning if a baseball announcer is his actual father. Unlike the showmanship league – the NBA, the MLB has suffered this with relatively obscurity. Without any of the dramatics that followed the loss of the NBA stars talents (and Shawn Bradley)… Except for one man.
Alex Fucking Rodriquez.
A-Rod, who has always been praised as having a keen eye, saw the signs and like the true hero he is, decided to act. His mid-season retirement was not because he couldn’t play anymore, but because he had to prepare for the biggest game of his life. He is the perfect baseball player to fill Michael Jordan’s Airs as the superstar ringer of the new ToonSquad baseball team. He is already well versed in how to use versions of MJ’s Secret Stuff to win and succeed. The man also already pictures himself as part fictional character, so adapting the physics of Looney Toon Land will be no problem for him. Alex Rodriquez, who throughout his whole career only ever just wanted to be loved, finally will be when he defeats the MonStars 2.0 and returns the talent of baseball’s next generation of superstars, in a fitting and heart warming passing-of-the-torch moment. We wish you and the rest of ToonSquad the best of luck, Alex.
Hopefully the championship party will be on your yacht, we know how much you love it.
WCS’s Newest Writer