Speaking of our most important figures, a recent edition of The Washington Post contained a piece on A-Rod’s recent decline and cited Yale economist Ray C. Fair’s mathematical model of how hitters age, derived using the stats of every batter who played at least 10 full seasons between 1921 and 2004. He uncovered that the typical peak is around age 28, even with a selective sample of hitters who aged gracefully enough to make it in the majors for a decade or more. By 29, such hitters are already in a decline. It’s worth noting that pitchers are at their best even earlier (around 26, which is when I noticed my own descent).
[ Editor's Note: Chryste Gaines, MBA, Olympic gold and bronze medal sprinter and former teammate of Marion Jones in the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, stated the following in a Dec. 22, 2008 email to in response to the IOC ruling:
"We are being unfairly punished. If the drug testing agencies cannot determine if an athlete is taking performance enhancing drugs how are the teammates supposed to know?... It negates all the family functions, church functions, and social events we missed in the name of winning an Olympic medal." ]
Following a brief pregame ceremony on August 12, Rodriguez donned the Yankee pinstripes for one final time as a player, contributing an RBI double in the first inning to help his team win. While he never reached the record-shattering heights that once seemed attainable, the slugger still finished with numbers that rank among the best ever in several categories, including home runs (696), RBIs (2,086), hits (3,115) and runs (2,021). Along with his three MVP awards, he won two Gold Gloves for his fielding prowess and was selected for 14 All-Star Games.