O’s need to add winners … and A-Rod isn’t one

October 29, 2007 | Drew Forrester

Leave it to Alex Rodriguez and his scumbag agent to usurp the game’s biggest event and announce their plans to “opt out” of his contract with the New York Yankees.

Come to think of it, maybe it WAS a good idea for A-Rod and Scott Boras to orchestrate his opting-out announcement during the World Series. After all, at least A-Rod can say with complete honesty that his name was mentioned during a World Series game in 2007.

Losers … both of ’em, A-Rod and Boras.

First, and I’ve been saying this for the better part of three weeks now. If Rodriguez had any stones at all, he would have called Boras and said, “You know what … I owe the Yankees a title. They rescued me from that dregs-of-a-franchise in Texas and brought me to the Big Apple for the specific purpose of delivering them a World Series title and I didn’t fulfill that obligation … so call the Yankees and tell them I’ll be back to honor my contract.”

But A-Rod doesn’t have any heart. Or stones. And far be it for the client to actually tell the agent how things are going to go in the process, right?

One thing A-Rod does have, besides those monster offensive numbers that make him the game’s most productive offensive player, is a King Kong-sized monkey on his back that says, “A-Rod can’t win.”

And, his bank account is King Kong-sized too.

How much money does a guy need before he wants to do something for the people around him who have risked their jobs and their livelihoods for him? A-Rod is so thankful to the Yankees, to Steinbrenner, Cashman, et al, that he’s breaking camp and heading out to whore himself to the next highest-bidder, where he will no doubt go amidst great fanfare, hoopla and promises of “taking them to the next level.”

There will be some speculation that perhaps the Orioles should FedEx A-Rod a blank check and ask him to join them for the next five years or so here in Charm City.

That’s actually a VERY GOOD idea if the Orioles want to continue losing. If they want to bring in A-Rod and continue to be a team that has no heart, no chemistry and no connection with the fans, by all means, call Scotty B and send the check.

But if the Orioles want to WIN, someday soon, they won’t even return Boras’ call, if it should even come.

Let’s first get this out on the table.  There’s no way in hell A-Rod would even THINK about coming to Baltimore, right? That would be like an NBA player sizing up a bunch of offers and then deciding to go play for a perennial loser like the Atlanta Hawks. A-Rod might not be a winner, but that doesn’t mean he’s dumb. So I’m sure he won’t be returning any calls from “the 410” anytime soon.

That said, he’s also a money-grubbing spotlight-chaser who would probably have to say, “maybe we should look at Baltimore” if MacPhail & Co. lost their minds and sent him a blank check and said, “$200 million for five years is on the table if you sign this and send it back.”

That would be a mistake on the Orioles part if they did that.

A-Rod is NOT a winner.

Derek Jeter? Winner. Curt Schilling? Winner. David Ortiz?  Winner. Greg Maddux? Winner. Pedro Martinez? Winner.

A-Rod? Not a winner.

The spanish word is “corazon” — or “heart” by our American definition.

A-Rod doesn’t really have any.

And neither do the Orioles, frankly.

They showed as much this past season when they did their best Jenna Jameson impersonation and let every team in the American League have their way with them for a 25-game stretch in July and August.

The Orioles need to weed out those guys with no “corazon”… adding A-Rod to the mix doesn’t help in that endeavor. They already have enough dudes on the team who come up with stomach ailments in August, or don’t run out ground balls for half-a-season, or throw their manager under the bus in June when they’re hitting .214 or give up another game-ending home run to someone.

The Red Sox just showed the O’s and everyone else the blueprint. It starts with pitching. Add in a few veteran players who want to win, above all else, and sprinkle in some home-grown talent … like Pedroia, Papelbon and Youkilis … and then, toss in a bunch of heart and you’ve got yourselves the makings of a championship-contending ballclub.

The O’s need LESS A-Rod and MORE pitching. Spend that money on pitching. Spend it on better scouting. Spend it on a guy like Mike Lowell (remember him, he’s the same guy you could have a few years back if you would have been willing to part with Hayden Penn and some other ruffians) who can play, works hard and wants to win. Don’t spend money on guys with no heart.

Don’t spend it on A-Rod.

If nothing else, that’s a start to the offseason.

And a good one, at that.