A-Rod: I said it because I meant it

May, 23, 2012
5/23/12
11:49
PM ET
Alex Rodriguez said Tuesday that he was about to "go off." On Wednesday, he broke his 52 at-bat homerless streak with not one, but two long balls.

"I said it because I meant it," Rodriguez said after he hit the two homers in his first two at-bats off lefty Will Smith, who was making his major league debut. "I said it because I've been working on some things. I said it with conviction, not because it was going to sound good here in my locker. It is good to back it up."

Rodriguez said he felt like he was getting good pitches to hit, but he wasn't in position to hit them.

"I thought today I was in position to take my 'A' swing," Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez is now hitting .281 with seven homers and 18 RBIs. His seven homers are tied with Nick Swisher for second the team. Curtis Granderson, who also went yard, has 14.

"When you hit in the middle of the order, your team expects you to get big hits," Rodriguez said. "I was tired of making the news for taking third base on a fly ball or stealing a base. That's a big part of the game and I take a lot of pride in it, but I understand what my bread and butter is and that is to make big noise with my bat."

Before the Yankees defeated the Royals on Tuesday, Brian Cashman and Joe Girardi addressed the team. A-Rod also spoke up.

"I said, 'Let's go out and get these two and then let's go out to the west coast and play Yankee baseball,'" Rodriguez said. "This team has been together a long time. The one thing is don't underestimate this team. This is not our first rodeo. We understand what it takes to win."
Andrew Marchand is a senior writer for ESPNNewYork. He also regularly contributes to SportsCenter, Baseball Tonight, ESPNews, ESPN New York 98.7 FM and ESPN Radio. He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. Follow Andrew on Twitter »

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Jacoby Ellsbury
BA HR RBI R
.288 14 64 64
OTHER LEADERS
HRM. Teixeira 20
RBIJ. Ellsbury 64
RB. Gardner 81
OPSB. Gardner .787
WM. Tanaka 12
ERAH. Kuroda 3.88
SOM. Tanaka 135