A-Rod on road games: ‘It’s been one long boo for 15 years’

Alex Rodriguez had a somewhat terse back-and-forth with a Detroit reporter on Wednesday over the perception that he is baseball’s biggest villain.

The New York Yankees slugger mostly blew off the assertion that he is the resident player pariah in Major League Baseball, especially in the wake of his season-long exile last year.

When it comes to the perception that he is reviled — and how the treatment he receives in ballparks could be even worse this season — Rodriguez instead insisted that it’s simply business as usual. Not only that, he claims fans have been “really generous.”

The testy exchange, which occurred before New York’s tilt with the Tigers, went in part as follows, as transcribed by ESPN New York’s Andrew Marchand.

Yankees skipper Joe Girardi, who previously referred to Rodriguez as the biggest surprise of spring training, came to the defense of his player. He pointed out that A-Rod is being tested for performance-enhancing drugs often yet is putting up big numbers, batting .265 with four home runs in 11 RBI on the season, a surprising development given his long layoff.

Regarding A-Rod’s tainted history, Girardi simply stated that “[s]ometimes people make bad choices” but insisted A-Rod has “paid the consequences” for his actions.

Rodriguez’s relatively seamless return to baseball has been a revelation of sorts, and even if he feels people have been kind to him, there still are plenty of people whose unfavorable opinion of him will never change, no matter what.

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