Alex Rodriguez knows how hard Giancarlo Stanton’s transition is
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Alex Rodriguez knows stardom and struggles. In his current role as broadcaster, he has become an expert on what it is like to transition to a new deal.
He knows pinstripes, too.
So mark him down as an expert as far as the transition Giancarlo Stanton is making from Miami MVP to the glare of the New York spotlight.
With the Yankees finishing up with the Angels on Sunday night at Angel Stadium, the attention on Stanton is going to increase as the Yankees head to Houston to face the Astros for four games. This is the first meeting since the Astros beat the Yankees in seven games, including the final two ALCS games in Houston, on their way to becoming world champions.
It’s really on now and this is a different Yankees team with the addition of Stanton. Those early struggles will be quickly overlooked if Stanton comes through against the Astros.
Rodriguez has walked in Stanton’s spikes and offered this insight into the changes Stanton has made, changes like moving from right field to left and to DH. Also going from the easy flow of Miami to the crush of New York.
From changing leagues to learning new pitching staffs and figuring out how to fit into the Yankees system.
There is a lot going on here and A-Rod went through a similar superstar transition back in 2004 going from the Rangers to the Yankees, small market to big market. Big fish to the biggest pond. Like Stanton, he was 28 when he came to the Yankees.
“I think Stanton has done a fantastic job of doing something that is a lot more difficult to do than most people give credit for, it is hard to move over to left field and DH,’’ A-Rod told The Post.
“It was a big concession for him, there are a lot of changes for him but the value of playing for the Yankees, the value of being a cog [in the Yankees’ offensive machine] was worth it.’’
Remember, when A-Rod came over to the Yankees he moved from shortstop to third base because a guy named Derek Jeter was at short.
“Stanton’s change is much more drastic than mine,’’ A-Rod said. “Going to DH, playing left field, all in a new league. DH is difficult because in the National League he is playing right field, now all of a sudden you are here as a DH and you are just so stagnant. You are not in the field, that takes awhile to get used to and not at the age of 38 but 28.’’
“I’m feeling a lot more comfortable,’’ Stanton said before Sunday’s game. As for playing the Astros in a huge series, Stanton smiled and said, “It’s going to be fun.’’
Rodriguez believes Stanton has found the perfect home with the Yankees in more ways than one.
“Yankee Stadium has yielded more home runs than any stadium in Major League Baseball since 2015,’’ Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez said Stanton eventually will take full advantage of “the bandbox,’’ especially when the weather warms.
The Yankees went into Sunday night having won eight straight, demolishing opponents along the way, outscoring them 62-17 over that span.
Rodriguez spent 12 years with the Yankees, won a championship in 2009 and had his trials and tribulations, including his PED suspension. Rodriguez finished his career with 696 home runs and 2,086 RBIs. With the Yankees he hit 351 home runs and drove in 1,096 runs.
Home runs and RBI are what it’s about.
Over 26 games Stanton owned a .236/.317/.434 slash line with five home runs and 15 RBIs. He led the majors with 59 home runs and 132 RBIs last season. He already had 272 home runs for his career and 687 RBIs.
Stanton is still feeling his way and over the winning streak was hitting .286 with one home run and three RBIs with eight runs scored. This weekend he has hit the ball well and does not have a lot to show for it with the heavy April nights here at the Big A, just about the only month the ball doesn’t fly here.
The transition continues.
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