Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 5/23/12

Alex Rodriguez was out on the field early Tuesday afternoon, and although he went only 1-for-4 with a single against the Royals in the Yankees' 3-2 win, the third baseman felt he was inching closer to an offensive explosion.

Rodriguez singled and stole second base in the fourth inning, though he struck out with the bases loaded in the fifth after the Royals intentionally walked Robinson Cano to pitch to him.

"I love that," Rodriguez said of the intentional walk. "It makes me really excited, but I don't like striking out in that situation. I'll take my chances. They're going to do that again and I'm going to be ready. I'm excited for that."

Rodriguez has not hit for his typical power this season, hitting only five home runs with 15 RBI through the team's first 43 games. He has tried to contribute in other areas, including a 5-for-5 mark in stolen bases, his highest total since he swiped 14 in 2009.

"I'm a big believer in all facets of the game: defense, running the bases, doing all the little things," Rodriguez said. "You can't come out here and just enjoy it when you're frickin' hitting home runs all over the place. That's easy. We're trying to preach accountability around here. I've been here talking the last two or three days, but I'd like to talk to you more when we're winning a lot of games and I'm crushing balls all over the park."

Rodriguez flied out to left field in his final at-bat, but he felt like something clicked during the swing, leaving him excited to return for the series finale Wednesday.

"My legs feel good; my body feels good," Rodriguez said. "I've been working hard with (hitting coach Kevin Long); I was out here early today and I'll be out here early tomorrow again. I feel like I'm about to go off. Today was a good win. Hopefully we can build on it."

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