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Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez to play final major league game next Friday

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NEW YORK, NY - JULY 22: Alex Rodriguez #13 of the New York Yankees reacts after lining out to left in the second inning against the San Francisco Giants at Yankee Stadium on July 22, 2016 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

NEW YORK — Alex Rodriguez will play his final major league game next Friday with the New York Yankees and then become a special adviser and instructor with the team.

Rodriguez and the club made the announcement before Sunday’s game against Cleveland.

A-Rod will play against Tampa Bay at Yankee Stadium on Friday night before ending one of the most prolific and polarizing figures in baseball history.

The 41-year-old designated hitter, a three-time AL MVP and 14-time All-Star, is hitting .204 this season with nine home runs and 29 RBIs in 216 at-bats. His worsening slump finally relegated him to the bench for most of the past month, with A-Rod getting only one start and seven at-bats in 14 games since July 22.

When the fourth-place Yankees (55-55) traded veterans Aroldis Chapman, Andrew Miller, Carlos Beltran and Ivan Nova leading up to last Monday’s trade deadline, they made it clear they were turning toward a youth movement.

Rodriguez has 696 home runs and trails only Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714) on the career list.

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