The sports industry has been pretty busy lately, what with the World Cup, LeBron James' decision, Brett Favre's decision … heck even hockey is getting more press than A-Rod, thanks to Ilya Kovalchuk's contract drama. Rodriguez's name is about to be linked with such baseball greats as Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Babe Ruth, so where is the hype?
Many critics have cited that though this milestone is impressive — as A-Rod may become the youngest player in MLB to reach 600 homers — it has a certain shadow cast over it. The Yankees' third baseman is an admitted steroid user, so it seems that the media is sweeping this accomplishment under the rug. Sure, he's going down in the MLB record books, but it will always be a number with an asterisk next to it.
However, there is a definite buzz around Yankee Stadium this week. As Rodriguez belted his 598th long ball on Sunday against Tampa Bay, fans have been clamoring for tickets in the bleachers for the Yanks' four-game home stand against Kansas City starting Thursday at 7:05 p.m.
According to The New York Times, ticket sales and prices are increasing for any seat in the bleachers, where the ball representing a league milestone could land. The Times claims that sections 135 and 136 in the left field bleachers are the most likely to catch an A-Rod homer.
These are tickets that normally cost $45. Now, they're selling for upwards of $150 online.
A-Rod claims he's not too worried about the milestone, and that it hasn't even crossed his mind much.
"I'm looking at 600 as a springboard to help my team keep winning," Rodriguez said. "I really haven't thought about it too much."
His manager, Joe Girardi, is hoping that it will all be over soon, and that A-Rod won't be hung up on No. 599 like when he was on the brink of 500 homers. It took Rodriguez 29 at-bats to reach 500 once he hit 499 back in 2007.
"Hopefully it gets out of the way quickly and it doesn't become a long, drawn-out pursuit," Girardi told reporters.
Though the media is far from hyping up this milestone moment for A-Rod, Yankees fans are flexing their wallets and testing fate to catch a piece of history.
Tainted or not, that ball could go for thousands on eBay.
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