Through his eight years since initially signing a $252 million contract with the Texas Rangers, Alex Rodriguez has drawn the ire of fans everywhere. He has been vilified, chasted, booed, and sometimes cheered. Even by his own home team (Texas then New York).

He has been taunted for his relationship with a stripper in Toronto, and also with his relationship with Madonna.

That is what being the game’s highest-paid player and one of the prima donnas gets you. It doesn’t help that he plays on the team that gets the most attention either.

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It’s only going to get worse this year with the admission that he used steroids during his three years in Texas. Oh yeah, also the A-Fraud comment from Joe Torre’s book.

There will defintely be A-Roid shirts and name-calling happening in all visiting ballparks, and even at Yankees Stadium.

It all starts tomorrow in the first spring training game for the Yankees against the Blue Jays in Dunedin. In an interview with PeteAbe, Rodriguez admits that he knows this year will be tough.

“I’ve had a lot of practice the last eight years,” he said. “Just hopefully get three good at-bats, gets some good running in and go home and have a nice dinner.”

I will never boo A-Rod in the Stadium because he is a member of my team. I will boo him (and every other Yankee) if he makes a dumb play or is in a prolonged slump of some kind. These players on the Yankees team need to understand that they will face this kind of media scrutiny and high expectations from the fans and the front office. That’s why they’re paid to perform at such a high level everyday.

I just wish A-Rod the best of luck handling all the hecklers. You will be a better person for it if you continue to play with your head up.