After being pinch hit for in Games 3 and 4 against the Baltimore Orioles, the $ 275 million US third baseman was removed from the starting lineup for Game 5 of the American League Division Series on Friday (5:07 p.m. ET).
What would you do with slumping Alex Rodriguez?
The 37-year-old Rodriguez is 2-for-16 (.125) with no runs batted in and nine strikeouts in the series. With runners on second and third and one out in the eighth inning of a 1-1 game Thursday night, he struck out against side-arming right-hander Darren O’Day. Baltimore went on to win 2-1 in 13 innings.
With the Yankees trailing 2-1 in the ninth inning of Game 3, manager Joe Girardi sent up Ibanez to bat for A-Rod, and Ibanez hit a tying home run. Ibanez homered again in the 12th to give New York a 3-2 win.
Baltimore led 2-1 in the 13th inning in Game 4 when Chavez batted for Rodriguez and lined to third for the final out.
Fifth on the career list with 647 home runs — 115 behind Barry Bonds’s record — Rodriguez has been slowed by five trips to the disabled list in five seasons: for a strained quadriceps (2008), hip surgery (2009), a strained calf (2010), knee surgery (2011) and a broken hand (2012).
As for the rest of the Yankees’ lineup, Derek Jeter was back at shortstop after being moved to DH for a game because of a sore left foot. Jeter led off, followed by left fielder Ichiro Suzuki, second baseman Robinson Cano, first baseman Mark Teixeira, Ibanez, right-fielder Nick Swisher, centre-fielder Curtis Granderson, catcher Russell Martin and Chavez.
Yankees ace CC Sabathia was on the mound, opposed by Jason Hammel in a rematch of the opener, won by the Yankees 7-2.