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Dear Mr. Rodriguez:

Thank you.

First, thank you for your resolve to return to the New York Yankees. Such an effort would be considered inspiring under normal circumstances. Given the trying times you have dealt with the past few years, the inspiration factor has increased exponentially.

Also, thank you for diligently keeping us baseball fans informed of your progress before taking the field for the first time in months last night. Don’t let your initial night deter you from your rehab work. Good things are coming soon for you.

I must admit it does not appear like you have many people in your corner these days, so I am here to encourage you to stay true, stay strong.

By all means, keep working hard in rehab. Do your level-headed best to return to the big league club, as I know you are capable of doing. Your Yankees need you. I mean, look at how your replacement is doing. You’re needed, and the sooner the better. It must feel rewarding to know you’re on your way again to truly earning some of that $114 million left over the last five years of your contract. The best way to do so, as you know, is in the big leagues and not on the bench.

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I understand there are all sorts of rumblings about your alleged steroid use and you might be fearful you may not receive your just recompense for your efforts — or be paid as your contract delineates — and that’s why you want to get back to playing so soon. First and foremost, your physical health should be your guide. If you can’t give it the old college try anymore, perhaps it’s best that you retire. The Physically Unable to Perform option is there, I guess, if you absolutely need to take that route.

As mentioned, I certainly appreciate your candor about your on-field progress, and I encourage you to keep us updated. I assume you and General Manager Brian Cashman are now on the same page when it comes to your progress and eventual return.

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In addition, your presence and repeated appearances before TV cameras and radio/newspaper microphones should only serve to distract casual baseball fans and hardcore Yankee supporters from the fact the Yanks are leaking oil and in a need of much newer models rather than increasingly expensive repairs, to use an automotive analogy. If Mr. Cashman or your teammates resent all the attention you are receiving, it’s their fault. They should know you automatically attract attention just because…well, just because it finds you.

Oh, and speaking of those annoying steroid allegations for most of the past decade, nothing has been proven, right? There’s nothing to the Biogenesis leaks that have your name written all over it, right? You can still lay claim to a spot in the Hall of Fame, based on your sparkling career numbers.

Right?

Alex Rodriguez

Bottom line, Mr. Rodriguez? You should do what’s best for you. You have earned that right because of your lengthy career and all your, um, contributions to baseball.

Very truly yours,

Chuck Samples
Proud fan of the Baltimore Orioles and Kansas City Royals

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