The hammer appears ready to fall on Alex Rodriguez, sort of, Monday afternoon. He’s on the verge of being handed a 214-game suspension by Major League Baseball for his connection to the Biogenesis Clinic, which would keep him off the field until 2015. According to various reports over the last couple days, Rodriguez is expected to appeal the ban and could make his 2103 season debut in tonight’s Yankees game against the White Sox.
ESPN’s T.J. Quinn reports Rodriguez will get 214 games. The official report is expected to come down from MLB in a press release around 3 p.m.
Sources tell OTL that MLBPA tried to strike deal today but were rebuffed. The 214-game suspension will be official at 3.
— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) August 5, 2013
Rodriguez was the last remaining holdout, as the dozen or so other players decided to accept their 50-games bans and begin serving them Monday. Bartolo Colon, Yasmani Grandal and Melky Cabrera, both linked to Biogenesis, were not suspended again. Washington pitcher Gio Gonzalez and Baltimore’s Danny Valencia were cleared in the investigation.
The 38-year-old Rodriguez is under contract with the Yankees through 2017. He’s owed roughly $100 million by the Yankees over that time. Rodriguez is expected to appeal and his case should be heard by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz within 20 days. Horowitz would then have up to 25 days to announce his decision.
As surreal as it sounds, Rodriguez will be suspended and make his debut in the same day.
A-Rod punished under drug agreement AND other areas of basic agreement, but will be allowed to play while he appeals.
— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) August 5, 2013
This is exactly what baseball wants, the never-ending A-Rod drama dragging into September.
[UPDATE: Here's the statement released by baseball. Rodriguez would begin his suspension on Thursday, meaning 211 games.
Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig announced today that third baseman Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees has been suspended without pay for the remainder of the 2013 Championship Season and Postseason and the entire 2014 Championship Season for violations of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program and the Basic Agreement.
Rodriguez's discipline under the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program is based on his use and possession of numerous forms of prohibited performance-enhancing substances, including Testosterone and human Growth Hormone, over the course of multiple years. Rodriguez's discipline under the Basic Agreement is for attempting to cover-up his violations of the Program by engaging in a course of conduct intended to obstruct and frustrate the Office of the Commissioner's investigation. The suspension, which will become effective on Thursday, August 8th, will cover 211 Championship Season games and any 2013 Postseason games in which Rodriguez otherwise would have been eligible to play.
Under the terms of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, Rodriguez’s suspension will be stayed until the completion of his appeal if Rodriguez files a grievance challenging his discipline.
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