New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez has been battling a left shoulder injury of unknown severity for the past couple of weeks, an injury that may be the reason for his lower-than-average power production.
“It’s just a small issue that only bothers him when he dives for a ball,” manager Joe Girardi told ESPNNewYork.com after having a conversation with Rodriguez shortly before Sunday’s game between the Yankees and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.
But another clubhouse source, who asked that his identity not be revealed, acknowledged that Rodriguez has been suffering from what the source called “a strain” for several weeks.
“He’s managing it as best as he can,” the source said.
Girardi, however, said Rodriguez is playing with a sore shoulder, not a strain.
“Guys are sore and a little beat up,” he said. “No doubt about it. … No, it’s not a strain.”
Strain or not, A-Rod seems to be doing just fine with the injury. He is hitting .323 with a 1.029 OPS, four home runs, and six doubles since May 31. His defense seems to be doing fine as well. His UZR of 6.9 is not only second among third basemen in all of baseball, but this year will be the first time since 2004 that he even posted a positive number.
Hopefully whatever is bothering him subsides shortly, but so far he has dealt with it fairly well.