The Yankees were down 5-0 in the fourth inning of yesterday’s 8-5 win over the Minnesota Twins, and at the time it just seemed like Alex Rodriguez‘s solo-shot was there to prevent another shut-out loss. But Rodriguez hit another homer in the seventh inning and then hit his third homer of the game in the ninth inning, making it the first time since August 14, 2010 that Rodriguez hit three home runs in a game.
Rodriguez’s three home runs sparked a comeback, with the final blow dealt by John Ryan Murphy in the top of the ninth inning, but the team admits without Rodriguez, the Yankees never would have had the chance at the victory. Rodriguez’s three-homer game comes just two days shy of his 40th birthday, and aside from Rodriguez’s play in the field, the aging veteran hasn’t showed signs of slowing down.
“Some people say life starts at 40; I’ll sign up for that right now,” Rodriguez said after the Yankees victory.
No one expected Rodriguez to come out of the gate swinging and Rodriguez has provided a distraction to the Yankees ball club, a good distraction. Rodriguez has become one of the leaders in the clubhouse, he’s been producing offensively and has silenced the critics. And no one is more pleased than Rodriguez’s teammates and his manager.
“It is more than I expected because of the layoff and the hip surgeries and his age,” Joe Girardi said. “I think it would be hard for us to predict that.
“He’s a teacher. He brings people together because he teaches, but he also likes to have fun. I have said a lot of times, people around him are laughing a lot. It is important during a long season.”