Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger reports that Alex Rodriguez will “have his surgically-repaired right hip checked out” after hitting coach Kevin Long noticed that he had difficulty making “a lower-body adjustment to bring balance back to his swing.”
Rodriguez told Carig that the hip isn’t causing any pain or discomfort, emphasizing that “it’s certainly no excuse for any poor performance.” There’s no date scheduled for the exam.
Instead he indicated that the Yankees simply want to be “very proactive” and stay “ahead of the curve” by having Rodriguez undergo semi-regularly checkups for the hip, on which he underwent surgery in 2009.
Rodriguez got off to a great start this season, went through an extended slump that dragged his batting average down to .242 and his OPS down to .781, and then followed up a two-homer game Tuesday with four hits yesterday to snap out of the funk in a big way.
Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.
The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.
The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.