It isn't happening, of course. The next time Madden admits he was wrong on A-Rod will be the first time. Instead, in today's Daily News column, Madden dances around the fact that A-Rod's return had much to do with the Yankees' resurgence, giving him as little credit as possible for it. (Full disclosure, I used to work at the Daily News, but I would feel the same way about Madden no matter what!)
Madden has made repeated wrong-headed pronouncements about Rodriguez, not to mention saying bizarre and outrageous things about A-Rod, like calling him "the Whitey Bulger of baseball." (Not to mention him telling WFAN's Boomer and Carton that there was "no vendetta on [Bud] Selig’s part" against A-Rod) And Madden has never acknowledged that his pontifications were wrong, not even when the FAN's Mike Francesa, in one of the greatest radio moments of this year, called him on it. (I've made lots of wrong pronouncements, too, but I will willingly cop to them!)
And I haven't even gotten into the fact that Madden repeatedly insisted that A-Rod undergoing serious surgery, and going through grueling rehab, was simply a ploy to be declared physically unable to perform, and to collect insurance money. Remember this Madden gem, from July 11?:
It is now a frantic footrace with the MLB drug posse for Alex Rodriguez, who will never play another game for the Yankees but is desperately trying to make sure he doesn’t lose a penny of the $100 million owed him on the last 4½ years of his contract.
In plain view, A-Rod is going through the motions, playing in rehab games for the Class-A Tampa Yankees in the Florida State League, all in the name of making his way back to the Bronx by the end of the month. It is just an elaborate charade.Madden also wrote this, on June 26:
Alex Rodriguez has 114 million reasons for telling the world that he has the green light to play baseball games again.
According to sources close to the ongoing drama surrounding the star-crossed Yankee third baseman, Rodriguez and his advisers are so concerned that Major League Baseball’s drug posse is quickly closing in on him that they have racheted up the timetable for him to return to game action.
Once he’s back playing in rehab games, the sources say, he could then claim he is physically unable to perform because of the serious hip injury he is recovering from, “retire” from the game, and still collect the full amount of his salary — $114 million over the next five years.
How is that "evil plan," as the Daily News once called it on the back page (on the very same day Aaron Hernandez was arrested as a result of an investigation into a murder -- a real evil plan!) working, Bill? Not only has Rodriguez looked great at the plate, but he made some nifty plays in the field and even stole a base yesterday! What insurer in his right mind would pay out a dime to him now?
The kicker is that Madden, without ever conceding that any of his hateful screeds were wrong, wrote this just the other day about Rodriguez. Madden says that this winter, A-Rod was "told by the first doctor who operated on his right hip that if he wants to be able to play with his kids when he’s 50 years old, he should really get the second right hip surgery done as well. Operating on both hips, however, would assure that he would never play baseball again."
Hmmmm. If Rodriguez were simply looking for a way to simply collect the $114 million owed to him, wouldn't he have simply gotten both surgeries done then and called it a day?
But I guess being a Hall of Fame baseball columnist means never having to write that you were wrong. Madden just keeps on going and going with his usual nonsense -- kind of like the Energizer Bunny of MLB columnists!