Alex Rodriguez told reporters (including Peter Botte of the New York Daily News and MLB.com's Bryan Hoch) that he will return to the Yankees in 2013 and he won't waive his no-trade clause. "I will be back. I have a lot to prove," Rodriguez said. "I’ve never thought about going to another team. My focus is on staying here. Let’s make that very, very clear." We heard earlier today from USA Today's Bob Nightengale that Rodriguez wouldn't ask for a trade himself, but has told his close friends that he would approve a deal if it was to another large market.
Rodriguez was again out of the starting lineup today, though he entered the game as a pinch-hitter and went 0-for-2 in New York's 8-1 loss to the Tigers that eliminated the Yankees from the postseason. Rodriguez appeared in just six of the Yankees' nine playoff games, delivering three hits (all singles) and two walks in 27 plate appearances.
This disappointing postseason performance has led to speculation about Rodriguez's future with the Yankees. The Marlins have been linked to the Miami native, but executives on both sides have denied that talks have taken place. Beyond Rodriguez's no-trade clause, of course, is the $114MM remaining on his contract through the 2017 season, his age (37), his recent injury history and the fact that Rodriguez posted a .783 OPS in 2012, his career low for a full season. The Yankees would have to eat most, if not all, of Rodriguez's remaining salary unless they got another bad contract back in return.