Let’s be thankful for one thing: Alex Rodriguez and his crack legal team waited until the champagne had been mopped up and the cars had been flipped over Wednesday night in Boston, before firing shots at Major League Baseball due to his on-going grievance hearing — which at this rate might be concluded by Groundhog Day. Based on his track record, you half expected A-Rod to issue a statement blasting Bud Selig right around the same time Erin Andrews had a microphone jammed in the commissioner’s face Wednesday night after the Red Sox wrapped up the World Series.
Instead A-Rod waited until Thursday to crank back up the propaganda wagon against Selig. This time the target was MLB COO Rob Manfred, whom Rodriguez’s legal team — namely publicity-seeking Joe Tacopina, wanted removed from the arbitration panel.
“Rob Manfred has gone so far over the line with his latest slanderous attack against Alex (which presumably was approved by Commissioner Selig) that we demand the other two arbitration panel members immediately remove Manfred from the panel hearing Alex’s appeal,” Joseph Tacopina said in a statement Thursday night. “Indeed, we do not see how he can continue to hold any position of responsibility within Major League Baseball. But we will leave that to the conscience and judgment of the owners within the league.”
In turn, Manfred didn’t back down, calling Tacopina “delusional.”
“Mr. Tacopina’s latest rant is so delusional it doesn’t warrant a response,” the league said in a statement. “The fact that Mr. Tacopina has now asked for two of the three panel members to be recused tells you everything you need to know.”
This latest batch of “he said/she said” bickering all started from a statement from A-Rod on Thursday citing MLB for “gross misconduct.”
Rodriguez faces a 211-games suspension due to his alleged involvement with the Biogenesis clinc. His grievance hearing began in October and has dragged into this month and shows no signs of coming any closer to a resolution. On the plus side, this never-ending saga produced one of the best bits of radio when Mike Francesa and the Daily News’ Michael O’Keeffe argued in circles about A-Rod for an hour last week.
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