Richard Sandomir notes that the YES Network is trying, at least temporarily, to airbrush A-Rod out of Yankee history:
To an extent, Rodriguez is fighting for redemption at YES, which Scott Boras, his agent, said in 2007 would see its worth rise with long-term aid from his client’s so-called “iconic value.” But recent actions taken by YES demonstrate the short-term erosion of Rodriguez’s value: after the Sports Illustrated story broke online, the channel replaced its “Yankeeography” of A-Rod with one of a much safer icon, Yogi Berra.
YES then yanked a “Yankees Classics” game starring A-Rod in favor of a three home-run game by Paul O’Neill. Again, a safer icon came to YES’s emotional rescue.
Sandomir characterizes this as punishment of A-Rod, but couldn’t an equal argument be made that YES is coddling him, or at least attempting to do so? Keeping A-Rod out of the public eye for a bit in an effort to get some distance between him and what it feels is an enraged public?
Ultimately I think it doesn’t matter much. Today’s press conference will result in a fresh batch of bloody stories for Rodriguez this evening and tomorrow, but eventually people are going to stop pestering him for answers he can’t or won’t provide. Then they’ll watch him hit, and watch the Yankees win a lot of ballgames this year. Or they wont. When any of those things happen, the focus will move to other things.