So you’re 13 years old, you’re Alex Rodriguez’s nephew, you play for the same youth baseball team that A-Rod did, and you look pretty much exactly like him. Oh, and the NEW YORK DAILY NEWS just did a big story on you. Hey, no pressure kid. Meet Joe Dunand Jr., who seems to be in line for superstardom, or endless, expensive hours of therapy, in the near future (pick one).
As I mentioned in Speed Read on Thursday, I watched the son of former San Francisco Giant Terry Whitfield play in an early-round game of a district All-Star Little League tournament earlier this week. All that Eric Whitfield, 12, was able to accomplish in that game was four home runs in four at-bats — three of the drives completely clearing the creek that ran behind the outfield fence. But that’s a tricky age, where hormones and motor skills kick in at different paces; there’s no guarantee that, by age 16, Whitfield will be appreciably better than most of his teammates. And by all accounts, the biggest thing that Dunand, Jr. has going for him is that he looks like A-Rod.
Oh, and a glowing review of the youngster’s swing from Jose Martinez, who runs a hitting academy in the Bronx.
Dunand Jr., a 13-year-old slugger, is A-Rod’s nephew. He’s also a 5-9, 140-pound spitting image of the Bombers’ third baseman.
His father, Joe Dunand Sr., is Rodriguez’s half-brother.
“He looks more like his son than mine,” Dunand Sr. said half-jokingly earlier this week as his son took batting practice at Jose Martinez’s “Baseball Made Simple Academy” in the Bronx.
(A-Rod looks around nervously, whistling. Casually kicks dirt in front of him).
Dundan Jr. plays shortstop for the Brooklyn-based Bergen Beach 13s, the same team that A-Rod, Johnny Damon and Todd Helton once played for. Is he the next A-Rod, the next Bryce Harper, or the next this kid? The answers are shrouded in mystery. Only one thing is certain: For God’s sake, we must keep him away from Madonna.