Resting Jeter And A-Rod – Good Or Bad?

It’s been emphasized time and time again this year, that the aging superstars Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez need rest and won’t be playing every day of the week, as they once did for many years. With both being on the wrong side of 30 and production dropping considerably, Joe Girardi believes the more rest the better for the (it’s debatable) future Hall-of-Famers.

As evident in the opening games of the season, Girardi seems to be serious about his plan to rest the veterans, as in just the second game of the season, Jeter was at DH with Nunez at shortstop. And last night, A-Rod was the DH with Nunez playing third. Joe recently said that this cycle of resting A-Rod and Jeter will continue throughout the season, primarily when the Yankees face lefties.

And that’s where I got a little thrown off and of course questioned Joe’s decision. Take Braves third basemen Chipper Jones. Still the third basemen yet being 40 years old, Chipper has played only 10 games as the DH since 2007, when he was 35. Though facing injuries including one right now that sidelined him for the beginning of the season, when healthy and playing third Chipper still is able to put up productive numbers in the middle of Atlanta’s lineup.

Who can’t say the same about Jeter and A-Rod? In 2010 at age 36, Jeet played in 157 games. 157. He batted .270, but nonetheless still played in the majority of the games and at shortstop. I really don’t understand why Joe thinks resting them will boost their production. Maybe that’s not his idea, and it’s just to prevent injury.

But both Jeter and A-Rod are fit and healthy athletes, and in recent years they still played most of the games at their usual positions. I don’t like the idea, or pre-determined thought that once a player hits 35+ every move to his left or right could be a strained hamstring. It just makes no sense to me.

When the whole left side of the infield is resting or DH-ing every other game, it hurts the team as a whole more then it prevents hurting Rodriguez and Jeter. You want the most experienced, battle-tested, championship-winning players on the field, don’t you? Having Eduardo Nunez filling in every night for them is not something that I want to see, despite the Yankees ironically going on tears whenever he’s in the starting lineup day after day.

I have nothing against Nunez or Girardi, and maybe it’s just the simple bias Yankee fan who wants to see Jeter play every night. But either way, I feel that this system of rest is kind of corrupted, and is not the ideal way to play out the final seasons of two of baseball’s greatest figures.

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About Brian D.

A passionate 15-year old Yankees fan who has hopes of becoming an MLB journalist or broadcaster. He brings an optimistic, yet realistic take on the Yanks to Yankees Fans Unite, and essentially lives and breathes baseball.

Posted on April 10, 2012, in Personal Opinion and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. I like the idea of exploring whether regular rest is a positive thing for the team or not, but the fact that the one example you used involved somebody that hasn’t had a healthy season since 2003 kind of hurts this post. In fact, not only did it do nothing to make me believe giving ARod and Jeter regular rest is a bad thing, it made me wonder if Atlanta should have given Chipper regular rest to try and keep him around more.

    But like I said, interesting idea.

  2. I don’t think it is as much about the rest as much as it is about wanting Nunez to play. I really do not get the hate Nunez is getting. RBI double 1st game and sac fly bunt single and a even a run saving play on D. Sure he makes errors but he has the tools to improve. Even Jeter made 22 errors his rookie year. He will be an everyday player eventually.

    • I think it’s the combination of the two Matthew. Girardi loves Nunez and wants to give the aginging ones some rest. It’s a perfect combination since Nunez can play both of those positions.

  3. Carefull Brian, saying this;

    “Joe Girardi believes the more rest the better for the (it’s debatable) future Hall-of-Famers.”

    I think you may believe Jeter doesn’t belong in the HoF but, others around here do (not me). Of course, I am sure you ment Jeter when you said…”it’s debatable” in the line above! I say this because the other player is considered one of the top 20 players of all time, whereas the first one is not to be seen on any list of the top 50-100 players of all time…other then Yankee fans list.

    On the other hand, I do think both will end up in the HoF…Jeter, because he is one of the top five hitters to play SS. A-Rod, because he was the best hitting SS of all time (along with Hornsby) and top 20 of all time.

    The need to rest Jeter or A-Rod once a week is crazy. Jeter is going good, keep him in the game…the same with A-Rod and Brett…let them play.

    • Ken let’s make a side bet. When Jeter makes it into the hall on the FIRST ballot you have to drive me to cooperstown for the presentation. hahahha. If he doesn’t I will take you to any minor league game you want.

      • Matt, I don’t think he deserves 1st ballot HoF by any stretch but, after seeing some of the players that have made it lately, who knows? There have been (and are) players that should have been in the Hall but, have not gotten the invite and never will…because they are not well liked by the Press.
        But Jeter has that going for him…everyone likes Jeter, don’t go saying I don’t like him, I do! But hearing him compared to the guys on the wall in the out field park is a Joke!
        If we were Boston fans, we would be saying the same thing about half their team. As it is, I have to hear fans say Posada, Bernie, Andy, Jeter, Mo and even O’Neill should be in the Hall!
        And fans say I am a Jeter hater, hell…anyone that really thinks all those guy belong in the Hall are wearing blinders or are so young (less than 50) they have never seen some of the true HoF players. lol
        Good enough to keep my rep going? :)

        • No to Posada…..No to Bernie……No to Andy…..No to O’Neill.

          Jeter and Mo will be first ballot HOF though. I see your point Ken. You have seen many more star players in your day. I can’t compare. I’m just going on the trend of the press and what my gut feels.

          • No doubt about them both making the Hall but, only Mo would be a 1st ballot member…in a real mans world! In this sissification of our country and sports, who can tell.
            Shame on you Matt, you know better than to go by what you read in the press and on some bloggers site.
            Nothing wrong with being younger than I am, heck I’d go for that myself…the only thing I say is; “if one thinks the players you are and have been seeing are some of the best, guess again (except for a very few) they can’t be in the same room as Joe “D”, Teddy “Ballgame”, Mickey Mantle, “Hammering” Hank, Willie Mays, just to name a few.
            Ooooops! Sorry ’bout that! lol
            different time and place! :)

    • Actually oldyankee, I meant A-Rod. Jeter in my mind IS a hall of famer, but since I was talking about A-Rod I had to say debatable. His steroid use from 01-03, and possibly for other seasons can’t make me want to see him get inducted one day. No one connected to PEDs should even be on the ballot, in my opinion.

      • Brian…
        How about Willie Mays, Mickey, and many others, they all use to drink too much and took Greenes and anything else they could come up with…Weed, Laudine, and (so called) vitamin B etc.
        Every generation, they have pills or injections that may or may not give them an edge.
        By the way, I know many keep saying A-Rod used 01-03 but, this is half way true only!
        He tried using within that time frame and gave it up because he and his family didn’t like it. No body has ever come forward and (under oath) claimed he used for those years…they have said he tried it in those years but not the whole time!
        He had great years in Texas but most sluggers do have good years down there, the ball flys out very well…also, he was in his prime years.
        You will hear many fans that don’t like A-Rod, say all sorts of things almost all of which is “hear say” or conjecture…not facts.
        Most have never read the transcript of his and others testimony, they may want to read it before they show how…shall we say, missinformed they have been by believeing everything on blogs and newspapers. Read everything with an open mind, most writers have their own agenda…and make the story fit said agenda. Bye the bye, I have read the transcript and A-Rod said “I tried it, and quit using because I didn’t like the effects……”Like or dislike, it is up to you but, other then Jeter, I know of no player that seems perfect!

        • You’re absolutely right. I don’t know, I just have never warmed up to A-Rod. He’s one hell of a ballplayer, but after his steroid admission I could never really think of him as a true HOF’er.

          However oldyankee, I don’t think you can compare weed to HGH. The Beatles took weed, yet they didn’t become brolic or built, it just inspired some of their songs! PEDs actually strengthened ballplayers (temporarily of course, we all know the lasting affects), and did give players a boost.

          And when you say A-Rod only tried it, and didn’t use it on a regular basis in Texas, he still did use it. He decided to try it although he knew the consequences and scrutiny he’d recieve if caught, and ended up tarnishing his legacy.

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