In an article posted to major news outlets today, A-Rod and Schilling fired shots at each other. Nothing new there.
A-Rod claims that the Yankees beat up on Schilling "a few times" this past year, and that Schilling was "crying" on the bench. I checked the stats. Schilling didn't lose to the Yankees during the regular season. He got beat up in Game 1 of the ALCS when his tendon was wriggling all throughout his ankle, and then stymied the Yankees in Game 6 by stapling the tendon in place.
So, when exactly was he crying? Trying to find that...
Even more so, A-Rod referred to himself as "upper-echelon". While his past stats and skills have made him on of the best in the league, I believe that upper-echelon is reserved for leaders. NEVER in his career has A-Rod been a leader. Let's do a quick review...
Seattle? Hmmmm....nope not there. They wanted him back. The fans loved him. They offered him lots of money. All the private rooms and planes an average man could want. But he chose Texas for the money.
Texas, you say? Not there, either. Sorry, partner...In fact, Texas did all they could to unload him to get out from under his contract which paralyzed the team.
In both cases, upon departure, both teams dramatically improved.
Schilling comes to Boston. He wins 20+ games, shows guts and blood pitching his heart out in Game 6, and leads his team to a World Series championship.
The Yankees had to go out and hire another hired gun in Randy Johnson this off-season partly because A-Rod couldn't deliver. His stats in the key games 4, 5, 6, and 7 were terrible to say the least.
His slap defines him. He is now just slapping out again.
So the questions remains "Is he upper-echelon?" Depends on the definition. But, he's not in my book.