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Alex Rodriguez Flashes Potential In Broadcast Booth, Though Still Room To Improve

Alex Rodriguez Flashes Potential In Broadcast Booth, Though Still Room To Improve

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Rodriguez (r) joined play-by-play man Kevin Burkhardt on the broadcast
Alex Rodriguez made his debut as a game analyst during FS1's broadcast of Yankees-Royals Thursday night, and he called the experience "pretty exciting." He said, "Everyone did a good job holding my hand a little bit. Hopefully, I didn’t embarrass myself too much and I don’t get a text from my bosses saying I’ve been ‘postponed’ for Saturday’s (Angels-Mets) game." FS1's Nick Swisher said, "You absolutely killed it tonight. We had such a fun time watching you tonight" ("Yankees-Royals," FS1, 5/18). In N.Y., Evan Grossman writes Rodriguez "still has some work to do before he fully transitions into the next chapter of his career." He was "great at times, as he’s been in the studio the last two playoffs." Rodriguez called the game alongside Kevin Burkhardt and Ken Rosenthal, and he was "respectful of his partners’ space." There was "only one tough debate when Rosenthal asked him about the free agent mentality of players." Rodriguez has an "ability to bring viewers inside the game and he did a great job of that also when he talked about 'Cowboy' Joe West, an umpire you don’t give 'any attitude' because 'it would make it a very long night.'” The "not so great stuff" included talk about how his "suspension from baseball made him appreciate the game more." He was "equating his ban" for steroid use to Royals P Mike Minor missing the last two years with a shoulder injury (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 5/19). The N.Y. Daily News’ John Harper prior to the game wondered how candid Rodriguez would be towards the Yankees. Harper: “He considers himself a partner of Hal (Steinbrenner) now and it’s all things Yankees. I think there’s a line he won’t cross ... He’s not going to heavily criticize any Yankees players.” SNY’s Marc Malusis: “He’s knows baseball and he’ll point out certain things. You’ll learn a little something watching Alex Rodriguez” (“Daily News Live,” SNY, 5/18).

MORE TO BE DESIRED: Twitter reaction to Rodriguez' in-booth debut was less than kind. Tampa-based WTSP-CBS' Justin Granit wrote, "A-Rod just called Didi Gregorious the  Bill Gates of shortstops. That is all." RoyalsReview.com's Shawn Newkirk: "Alright probably no more Yankee games for A-Rod. He's now talking about how Gregorious used to fix his iPad." SI.com's Jimmy Traina: "I'll never in a million years understand this ARod thing. Yes, he won a WS in '09 but he was a cancer every other minute he was here..."

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