Alex Rodriguez Jul 11, 2023; Seattle, Washington, USA; FOX Sports analyst Alex Rodriguez with before going on air before the 2023 MLB All Star Game at T-Mobile Park. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Alex Rodriguez gets paid well to be a Major League Baseball analyst on Fox and ESPN, but he still believes the gig comes at a cost.

According to A-Rod, his TV career is at least part of the reason why his number 13 hasn’t been retired by the New York Yankees. Rodriguez joined WFAN’s afternoon show with Evan Roberts and Tiki Barber this week. During the interview, he was asked about the Yankees giving Joey Gallo his No. 13 after they acquired him at the 2021 trade deadline.

“It did not make me happy,” Rodriguez admitted before confirming he identifies as a Yankee and would love to have his number added to Monument Park. But Rodriguez doesn’t think he’s doing himself any favors by being on TV.

“With my job on TV, I’m too critical to the Yankees, and that doesn’t help my case,” Rodriguez said. “But I get paid to tell the truth and if you guys ask me a question, I’m gonna tell you exactly as I see it and not sugarcoat it because I want my number retired. And if it’s not retired, then so be it.”

Barber asked if Rodriguez could set up a meeting with Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner to try and mend any wounds he has with the organization, but the three-time MVP insisted that wasn’t the issue.

“My relationship with Hal and the organization is fine, but when I’m on television and they ask me a question, I can’t sugarcoat it and make something look or pretend cause it’s not. I wish could say that things are going great and they’re running like the Braves and Houston and the Dodgers, but that’s not what I feel, so that’s not what I’m gonna say.”

Maybe this is what Rodriguez tries telling himself to explain why he hasn’t been honored by the Yankees in his retirement, but TV isn’t to blame. No one looks at Rodriguez as this loose cannon on TV looking to bash teams and players. He admittedly roots for the Yankees and has morphed into a surprisingly positive ambassador of the game since transitioning into the media.

A-Rod hasn’t had his number retired by the Yankees because he was a very controversial figure throughout his tenure in New York. He was controversial for his seemingly-deteriorating relationship with Derek Jeter, he was controversial for admitting to taking steroids, he was controversial for failing a PED test, he was controversial for battling with MLB over that failed test, and he was controversial for ultimately serving a season-long suspension.

Despite all of that, Rodriguez deserves to have his number retired. He won two regular season MVPs with the Yankees and was the postseason MVP in 2009, when they won their last World Series. Even with his faults, and his TV career, No. 13 should be in Monument Park. And the Yankees are the ones who set that precedent with their historically aggressive attitude toward retiring uniform numbers.


About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to