Our long national nightmare is over, Alex Rodriguez finally got a base hit. In fact, he hit two! Entering yesterday's game, A-Rod was 2-10 with three walks and was not looking great at the plate. This, of course, led to some people, mostly dunderheads on Twitter, declaring his career over because as we all know, everything about a baseball season, and a player's future performance, should be based upon a handful of at bats.
But I digress.
Here's Alex's spray chart for the day.
Those are the three balls he hit yesterday—the two line drives were his singles.
Next up, the pitches thrown to him broken down by pitch category. As you can see, he was thrown almost entirely fastballs. (13 fastballs, 1 off-speed)
Rodriguez finally broke through and got his first hit of the season in the fifth inning off Houston's starter Mike Fiers. No, he didn't hit it for a home run, but it was a solid line drive, RBI single that tied the game at five and it came off a 91 mph fastball that got too much of the plate.
This is about a millisecond before Alex makes contact with the ball.
And here's video of that same fifth inning RBI single:
Once Rodriguez got that first hit out of the way, he followed it up with another line drive single in the seventh against Houston reliever Ken Giles. As you can see from the spray chart above, the singles landed in nearly the same spot.
Alex saw three pitches from Giles and he swung at all of them. He swung through the first two which were clocked at 97.2 and 98.0 mph respectively, and it looked like Giles would just blow him away on the third pitch, but he didn't.
The third pitch was just a little bit harder than the second—it came in at 98.1 mph. But the thing about Giles' pitches were that they weren't really moving and were all thrown straight into the strike zone. Sure, they were very hard fastballs, but Alex Rodriguez is a 20-year veteran of MLB and if you're just going to keep throwing straight fastballs at him, he'll eventually adjust.
And he did.
So stop worrying about the old man. Now that he's gotten hits number one and two out of the way, he should be fine.