For the time being, it appears that Alex Rodriguez is not interested in any kind of brokered deal like the one Ryan Braun allegedly got from Major League Baseball. The Yankees’ third-baseman plans to appeal any suspension handed down by the league, according to a USA Today report late last night by Bob Nightengale and a Sports Illustrated SI Wire piece today.
Rodriguez has been rumored to be in line for at least a 100 game suspension for his connection with the now-shuttered Biogenesis lab in Florida, the same one Braun was tied to. Braun got a season ending 65 game ban, but there are a number of reports that A-Rod will receive a much harsher penalty because he purportedly tried to cover it up by purchasing documents in order to destroy them.
The 100 games would be a minimum under the collective bargaining agreement because Rodriguez has already admitted to using PEDs while with the Rangers. Of course, MLB would have to show a second failed test to get that many games. But if they do, they can add as many games after that for interfering with the league’s Biogenesis investigation of him and others.
Meanwhile, Rodriguez and the Yankees are at odds because A-Rod sought a second opinion of his MRI which the team reported was a Grade 1 quad strain. USA Today reported that Michael L. Gross, chief of the division of sports Medicine and the orthopedic director of The Sports Medicine Institute at Hackensack University, told WFAN on Wednesday that Rodriguez has no injury.
In effect, Rodriguez is claiming that the Yankees have fudged the MRI results for the sole purpose of keeping him out of the lineup to collect insurance hinting at a conspiracy.
Rodriguez was expected to be activated on Monday for the first time this year but the quad strain set him back. The Yankees insisted that it could take a week to 10 days to heal and they would send him back for another 20 day rehab stint. However, A-Rod insists he is well enough to get back into the lineup now.
Baseball has its back against the wall with Rodriguez because if he does not agree to a plea deal, he can appeal any suspension to stay active for essentially the rest of the season. That throws it back into the Yankees’ hands as to whether he is fit enough to play on the major league roster.
Unconfirmed sources within the organization say the Yankees are willing to do just about anything to get out from under the huge contract they gave to Rodriguez that is paying him $28 million this year and an additional $86 million the next four years. If A-Rod saw any doctor without knowledge or consent of the team, the contract could potentially be voided.
Alex Rodriguez is like a lingering cold that won’t go away and it appears he will fight to his last dollar to play and collect every dime is claims is owed. That is not good news for the Yankees and especially Major League Baseball.