I’ve been thinking about a lot of things today. About you, about us, about how much you’ve meant to me over the years and about how I feel about you. I think, from what I’ve read anyway, you’ve been having these thoughts too.
I’ve been thinking about your struggles and problems and how I’ve stuck with you through all of them. I know, I know, I may not have always shown my support, but believe me, I’ve always known that some day you would become the player you were meant to be.
But yesterday, after the announcement of your one-year deal avoiding arbitration, I’m saddened.
I’m saddened that all of my support has lead to this: a simple one-year contract. I would have hoped that by now, my devotion and feelings towards you would have been recognized, and you would have taken it upon yourself to see to it that we would be together for longer than that. I know this isn’t the end of the road for us, and a contract now doesn’t rule out continuing to negotiate for a longer contract during next season, but I’m still a little worried.
I rooted for you last year to (finally) be your “break out” year. It was. You were amazing. You showed how complete your game is amassing a 6.9 fWAR and winning the American League Gold Glove for left fielders. You ran the bases like few are capable, and played in 151 games; your most in four years.
And now, even after what you accomplished last year, there are still those that don’t believe in you. Not me. There are those that think your success in 2011 was a fluke, an outlier contingent on a lucky BABIP and the success of others in the lineup. Not me.
Alex, I know we’re going to be great together. We already are great together. I can’t imagine seeing you with Atlanta or Seattle or Los Angeles. They don’t deserve you. They couldn’t feel for you the way I feel for you. No one can.
We belong together, Alex. We belong together for longer than just one more guaranteed year. You have to believe me. Imagine how great things this season, and next season, and the season after will be with all the other guys you’ll get to play beside. Imagine it. And no matter what people will want to say about my feelings for Eric Hosmer, my feelings for you will always take precedent. We’ve been through too much for them not to. You will always be number one in my heart.
Everyone is saying it Alex. Everyone says you need to be given a long-term contract. I know there are two sides to everything Alex, but I just need to know you want to be with me as much as I want to be with you. These next few years could be special. Real special. I need to know you want to be here with me to see them.
I need a commitment, Alex. I’m not asking for too much, I don’t think. The money will be aplenty no matter where you play, but the love you receive from that other skanky city will not be. From me, you have to know by now you will receive nothing but devotion and love.
I need a commitment, Alex. I need to know that we’ll be together for the long term. I need to know that you’ll be here for the parade through the Plaza. I need to know that you want to be with me for the future.