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"Nobody ever came back from 3-0 in an MLB playoff series… until A-Rod joined the Yankees" - Bill Simmons mocks Alex Rodriguez, argues New York Yankees legend is unlucky for his teams in the postseason

Alex Rodriguez during Red Sox v Yankees Game 7, 2004 ALCS
Alex Rodriguez during Red Sox v Yankees Game 7, 2004 ALCS
Daniel Santiago

Former New York Yankees star and current Minnesota Timberwolves minority owner Alex Rodriguez has found himself in the crosshairs of renowned media personality and Boston sports fan Bill Simmons. The latter put out banter on social media site Twitter, almost insinuating that Rodriguez was a harbinger of bad luck.

Simmons compared the Yankees' devastating American League Championship Series loss to the Boston Red Sox way back in 2004 to the recent Minnesota Timberwolves' playoff choke. Rodriguez had just arrived in the Bronx that year when the Yankees were famously upended by the Red Sox after being up 3-0 in the series. Boston went on to win the World Series and break the 86-year "Curse of the Bambino." It was the first time an MLB franchise blew a 3-0 lead in a playoff series.

Nobody ever came back from 3-0 in an MLB playoff series… until A-Rod joined the Yankees. Nobody ever blew 3 4Q double digit leads in the same NBA playoff series before… until A-Rod bought the Timberwolves,
"Nobody ever came back from 3-0 in an MLB playoff series… until A-Rod joined the Yankees. Nobody ever blew 3 4Q double digit leads in the same NBA playoff series before… until A-Rod bought the Timberwolves," - @ Bill Simmons

Similarly, the Minnesota Timberwolves — who were just recently bought by Alex Rodriguez as a part owner — suffered one of the biggest playoff collapses in NBA history. The Wolves became the first team ever to blow three fourth-quarter double-digit leads in the same playoff series. They succumbed to the Memphis Grizzlies in six games and were eliminated in the first round.

What's mind-boggling about Minnesota's series is that they were outscored by Memphis by a combined 62 points in the fourth quarters of the six-game series, 198-136. The series will be one for the history books. Unfortunately, it will not be for the right reasons for both the Timberwolves and their new part-owner A-Rod.

Is Alex Rodriguez cursed in the Playoffs?

Alex Rodriguez batting against the Detroit Tigers, 2012 ALCS
Alex Rodriguez batting against the Detroit Tigers, 2012 ALCS

Rodriguez is a once-in-a-generation type of talent. However, he has always been criticized and labeled as a "choker" when it comes to the playoffs. These are harsh words and criticisms toward an All-Star caliber athlete, but is there any credence to these claims? Does A-Rod actually buckle come October? Let's find out.

In his 16 seasons with the New York Yankees, he appeared for the team in the playoffs nine times. His overall playoff wildcard/series record with the organization is 3-8. Apart from his superb 2009 playoff form, which led to the Yankees winning the World Series that year, A-Rod had a batting average of .178 in 11 playoff series.

His most productive postseason outing, not including the 2009 stint, was during his first season with the team in 2004. He batted .340 with three homers and eight RBIs combined against the Detroit Tigers and the Boston Red Sox.

It can also be observed that, except for the years 2004 and 2009, A-Rod's WPA, or the win probability added for an offensive player, were all negative values. If this indicates anything, it's that A-Rod mostly hindered the team from their chances of winning during those playoff games.

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Of course, he was one of the biggest reasons why the Yankees won their last world championship in 2009 when he batted .378 with six homers and 18 RBIs in the postseason. But whether or not Alex Rodriguez was a solid playoff performer will remain up for debate for a very long time.


Edited by Jodi Whisenhunt

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