Originally posted on The Other Paper  |  Last updated 7/5/13
New York Yankees fans got a mixed bag of news Thursday. After celebrating a Fourth of July four-game sweep of the Twins, some Yankee Doodles might have choked on their hot dogs when Alex Rodriguez proclaimed he plans on never leaving the Bronx. "I love being a Yankee," Rodriguez told USA Today, in his first extensive interview since last October.            "I love being in New York. I never want to leave." Not exactly "The Stars And Stripes Forever"  to the Yankee organization's ears, but they may not have a choice except to have the $114 million third baseman playing until 2017. Rodriguez is rehabbing from his second serious hip surgery since 2009, first with the Class-A Charleston RiverDogs, then with Class-A Tampa this weekend as part of his 20-day rehab assignment following the surgery in January to repair a baseball-sized hole in his hip. He went 0-for-4 in his first two games this week. He also faces a possible suspension because of his alleged ties to baseball’s Biogenesis drug scandal. "I know people think I’m nuts," he said. "I know most people wouldn’t want the confrontation. Most people would say, 'Get me out of here. Trade me. Do anything.'  'But I’m the (-------) crazy man who goes, 'I want to compete. I want to stay in New York. I refuse to quit.' "Maybe it’s stupidity, I don’t know, but I’m wired to compete and give my best. I have a responsibility to be ready to play as soon as I can." A-Rod, who was a laughing stock during in the 2012 postseason, is one of the central figures in Major League Baseball’s investigation into the Biogenesis anti-aging clinic and its possible distribution of performance-enhancing drugs to 20 or more players. In the wide-ranging interview, Rodriguez even took some time to try to put his checkered past in perspective. "If I go out, and something happens to me, well, I know I did everything I possibly could. I know that any day could be my last. I’m just going to let the chips fall where they may. "And you know something? I’m OK with that," he said. "Just to have the opportunity to put on the pinstripes, and compete again at Yankee Stadium, and helping my team win, it’s a day that I’ve been dreaming about a long time now. Ultimately, say what you want about me, I’m a baseball player. That’s what I do. "And I’m not giving up." A-Rod put in an 80-minute on-field workout at Riley Park on Thursday, and was asked to envision what the reception might be like in New York when he rejoins the Bombers after completing this rehab assignment. "I hope it’s positive. I am optimistic about it," Rodriguez said. "I continue to get great support from a lot of people. I’ve never played the underdog role for a long time. But I feel like it’s the way people are cheering me on and supporting me. It feels pretty good." Rodriguez, who turns 38 on July 27, is clearly is seeing himself in a different light now after throngs of people turned out to cheer for him in his first two minor league games. Asked if he is really the underdog, A-Rod replied, "I think so. After two hip surgeries? There’s a lot of nay-sayers. And science may bet against me. But I am excited for the challenge." Asked if he understands why people consider him the bad guy, he said, "Sure. Everyone has their views. That’s exciting. That’s a different role and fun role to play."
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Chip Kelly: ‘There’s not a bunch of O-linemen on the street’

Rosevelt Colvin: Belichick had Patriots practice batting balls

Urban Meyer considering using J.T. Barrett in the red zone

Report: Giants 'hopeful' Pierre-Paul can return for final month

Report: Bills hosting Trent Richardson for workout

Report: ‘Weekend-long bender’ prompted CC Sabathia’s rehab


Knicks coach: Porzingis is part-Dirk Nowitzki, part-Pau Gasol

Michael Bennett dislikes Stafford because of JFK assassination

Tedy Bruschi: Always Feels Good To Beat Cowboys

Kentucky and Duke set for 1st meeting since 2012

Michael Bennett calls out Seahawks owner to pay Kam Chancellor

WATCH: Officials blow call on illegal bat, cost Lions game

Did McConaughey speech inspire Redskins to beat Eagles?

What should be done with Colin Kaepernick?

Steve Weatherford: Navigating life as a veteran NFL free agent

What pushed the Toronto Blue Jays to the AL East title?

NFL power rankings at the quarter mark of the 2015 season

Some surprising NHL veterans cut from rosters

JR Smith sinks half-court shot to win military member $30K

MLB X-factors to watch in Wild Card games

Seven NFL head coaches already on the hot seat

10 rookies who could become MLB postseason heroes

CC Sabathia and a history of Yankees with alcoholism

Why the NL Wild Card Game makes or breaks Chicago

WATCH: Kam Chancellor saves game for Seahawks

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

What should be done with Kaepernick?

10 rookies who could be playoff heroes

X-factors to watch in Wild Card games

Texas Rangers ups their concessions game for the postseason

College playoff: Five teams that hurt themselves

College playoff: Five teams that helped themselves

Could this be the Carolina Panthers season?

Michael Irvin: Cowboys have no chance against Patriots Sunday

Melo on requesting a trade: 'Hell no'

Remembering the Angels-Mariners AL West tiebreaker of 1995

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker