A-Rod's steep career decline

The Yankee's production is drastically slipping much sooner than expected

Updated: July 12, 2012, 3:06 PM ET
By Ben Lindbergh | Baseball Prospectus
Alex RodriguezKim Klement-US PresswireWhat the next five years will look like for Alex Rodriguez is up in the air.

When Major League Baseball's All-Stars convened in Kansas City earlier this week, one notable name was nowhere to be found: Alex Rodriguez. Rodriguez has been an All-Star 14 times, more than any active player. He leads all active players in career value, according to traditional stats (home runs, runs, RBIs) and advanced stats (WARP). Only a handful of players in history have done as much to help their teams win, but career accomplishments mean only so much.

To be considered one of the best players in baseball, you have to continue to play like one. And lately, A-Rod hasn't looked a lot like an All-Star.

Rodriguez won his third American League MVP award in 2007. Since then, his performance has declined in five straight seasons (see chart). Most players can expect to see their numbers take a tumble after an MVP season, but A-Rod's decline goes beyond routine regression. He's not coming back down to earth. He's falling off the face of it.

Ben Lindbergh

Baseball Prospectus
Ben Lindbergh is the editor-in-chief of Baseball Prospectus. He has interned for multiple MLB teams and is a member of the BBWAA.