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Source: If A-Rod doesn’t settle with MLB, he will be given a lifetime suspension

Jul 31, 2013, 3:50 PM EDT

Alex Rodriguez Reuters Reuters

A source familiar with the Biogenesis investigation tells HardballTalk that if Alex Rodriguez and Major League Baseball are unable to reach a settlement in connection with the Biogenesis matter, Major League Baseball will suspend Rodriguez for life. Previous reports have only suggested such a move is possible.

A lifetime ban would almost certainly cause Rodriguez to appeal the discipline. HardballTalk’s source says that Major League Baseball is aware that the arbitrator who would hear the matter – Fredric Horowitz – may not uphold a lifetime ban in light of the fact that Rodriguez has never been subject to discipline for PEDs before and because going all the way to baseball’s most severe sanction would be extreme for first-time discipline.  The league believes, however, that even if he were successful in having his sanction reduced on appeal, Rodriguez would ultimately be given a severe suspension, on par with what it is currently offering Rodriguez: 150 games or greater. The league is confident that Rodriguez would not prevail on the basic matter of culpability if he appealed.

Major League Baseball was unable to comment, citing the pendency on the ongoing investigation. Rodriguez’s attorney, David Cornwell, did not return calls seeking comment.

The source says that Major League Baseball is unwilling to agree to a suspension of Rodriguez in the 100-game range, demanding much more time off, even in the context of a settlement. The league, according to the source, believes that it has “compelling evidence” of significant malfeasance on Rodriguez’s part, including use of performance enhancing drugs, steering other players who sought to take PEDs to the Biogenesis clinic and his attempts to obtain and possibly destroy evidence from the Biogenesis clinic. Rodriguez and his attorneys, the source says, strongly dispute allegations of steering players to Biogenesis and attempting to destroy evidence.

The source says that, those disputes aside, Rodriguez is “in for a world of hurt.”

The source says that discipline is most likely to be leveled against Rodriguez, be it in the form of a settled-on or unilaterally-imposed sanction on Friday. Major League Baseball is expected to announce discipline for all of the other players connected to Biogenesis on that day as well.

167 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Stacey - Jul 31, 2013 at 3:51 PM

    Alex, you should have just gotten drunk, run over someone with a car and then raped them. You would have been better off.

    • historiophiliac - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:02 PM

      What?

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:05 PM

        Most likely Stacey is mocking how many DUIs go unpunished, or Matt Bush’s transgressions or Josh Leuke’s raping didn’t get punished by MLB.

      • historiophiliac - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:07 PM

        I know. It’s still disturbing in print. I didn’t take it literally.

      • cur68 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:09 PM

        Yeah, MLB would not have suspended him for any of that. At any rate, I think that’s what Stacey is getting at.

      • historiophiliac - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:11 PM

        I got it! Sheesh. Go polish yer monocle, Richie.

        (You probably wouldn’t want my real opinion on that.)

      • whatthehellisansky - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:10 PM

        Matt Bush IS currently is jail is he not? Would a-rod prefer jail?

      • fanofevilempire - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:15 PM

        MLB could not comment, WTF everything that these sons of bitches executives and Selig talk about is on espn, fox and all over sports radio and they can’t comment.
        I’m I suppose to believe the source doesn’t work @ MLB., good job Selig, you have done
        so much for MLB, you stupid old man. I hope the Yankees have to pay Alex, minus suspension money, best of luck to Alex and any other player that appeals.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:38 PM

        Matt Bush IS currently is jail is he not? Would a-rod prefer jail?

        Because he almost killed someone. He’s had trouble with alcohol before, in which MLB did absolutely nothing. Tony LaRussa was busted for a DUI, nothing. Ron Washington was found with cocaine in his system, nothing. Krod beat his ex-gf, nothing. Brett Myers beat his wife, nothing. Julio Lugo choke slammed his wife onto a car, was released by Hou, picked up by TB two weeks later and played out the year, nothing.

    • ravensfan8780 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:06 PM

      This isn’t the nfl

      • DJ MC - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:07 PM

        Right. The NFL punishes those people.

    • basedrum777 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:07 PM

      This person is falsely implying that Arod would’ve gotten less of a ban/suspension from baseball if he had done the crimes above. They are not worth responding to.

      • historiophiliac - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:21 PM

        Show your work.

      • asimonetti88 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:51 PM

        Based on MLB’s past record, it’s hard to argue the point.

      • Stacey - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:38 PM

        It was a joke, you dolt.

  2. cocheese000 - Jul 31, 2013 at 3:54 PM

    I really think that selig wants arod to go away and never come back.

    • baldeagle22 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:09 PM

      Selig/Yankees

      • moogro - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:48 PM

        Selig and the Yankees are colluding to get them out of the contract.

    • fanofevilempire - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:20 PM

      I hope he doesn’t, I hope Selig lives to be 110 and never lives down the shame
      of what he encouraged Bonds, Sosa and McGuire to dupe the fans. I hope Alex
      and Pete Rose do appearances together, that would be awesome!

    • bravojawja - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:27 PM

      • mrpinkca - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:07 PM

        … He came back.

    • nbjays - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:14 PM

      “I really think that selig wants arod to go away and never come back.”

      Yeah, Bud and A-Rod have a Smeagol/Gollum thing going on I think

  3. skipperxc - Jul 31, 2013 at 3:54 PM

    The source says that you used that phrase to start too many paragraphs in a row.

    • jonevans511 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:39 PM

      Apparently 52 people and you expect grade A journalism from a website in 2013. That is far more sad than this authoring using “the source says”.

      • jon kk - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:04 PM

        It’s not grade A, it’s pretty basic. We shouldn’t have expectations of good writing? *That’s* sad.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:08 PM

      Name your sources, Craig! “Jim” or “Jack” for the simplicity; “Arturo” or “Chaim” for some flavor.

      • historiophiliac - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:08 PM

        Or, for a cleaned up spin on Watergate: “Sheep Goat.”

  4. tbutler704 - Jul 31, 2013 at 3:59 PM

    MLB has threatened him with this for days now by floating it in the media every which way….it must be astounding to them he’s pushing $100M into the center of the table and calling their bluff.

    • basedrum777 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:08 PM

      Maybe he really does want to play baseball. Seems like an odd answer but I guess possible.

      • tbutler704 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:11 PM

        Maybe so, but man oh man. This kind of case has never been in court before, and he stands to lose over $100M, versus “only” losing ~$36M or so (assuming the rest of 2013 + 2014 is what they’re really offering him).

        This is a lot of love….

    • ctony1216 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:57 PM

      A-Rod has 2 choices:
      1. Don’t appeal and take 150 games suspension ($20+ million)
      2. Appeal, risking a lifetime ban ($100 million), which isn’t likely, while possibly saving $10 million (half a season).

      Given Braun’s deal (65 games), A-Rod might be justified appealing anything over 100 games.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:07 PM

        Rumor is that it’s a ban of this year and all of next, so more like a 200+ game ban. So he’d lose almost $30M.

        But again, so much speculation that we don’t know what’s actually true or not.

  5. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:00 PM

    Wasn’t that on Buffy the Vampire Slayer? The Source was always causing trouble…

  6. heyblueyoustink - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    “The source says that, those disputes aside, Rodriguez is “in for a world of hurt.”

    Cause what you gonna do, when the Budster and his 24″ legal pythons come looking for you? Brother!

    • basedrum777 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:09 PM

      Train, say your prayers and eat your vitamiiiinnnnssss….uh oh!

    • bigharold - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:12 PM

      I see what you did there Blue.

      The subject is A-Rod and your paraphrasing a guy that admitted regularly taking steroids on the witness stand.

      Priceless!

      • heyblueyoustink - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:10 PM

        Like bassdrum said, eat your vitamins……uh oh.

    • nofunleague - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:27 PM

      Baseball is in enough trouble. Please don’t muddle it with Hulk Hogan(phony) and WWE references. Good god man

  7. mybrunoblog - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:02 PM

    Sources are also saying that Rodriguez is believed to know the whereabouts of the body of Jimmy Hoffa. Other sources insist that Rodriguez is responsible for the murders of Nicole Simpson and her male friend and is refusing to tell MLB investiagtors the location of big foot.

    My god in heaven I am so sick of Arod stories. Now get the hell off my lawn.

    • rbj1 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:29 PM

      A-Rod also kidnapped the Lindbergh baby. He can afford a time machine.

      • flamethrower101 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:43 PM

        Correction: A-

      • flamethrower101 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:44 PM

        Correction:

      • flamethrower101 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:46 PM

        Correction: A-Rod IS the Lindbergh baby. (Seriously twice my phone cut me off mid-message and I accidentally posted when I didn’t wanna. That totally f-ing ruins the joke. Craig, take off my other two, please.)

  8. historiophiliac - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    Yea, it’s Friday! We have the weekend to hash it up! (and I don’t miss any of it tomorrow) :)

    • heyblueyoustink - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:13 PM

      Quit screwing me up. It Wednesday according to all my electrical devices, damnit.

      • historiophiliac - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:59 PM

        Sorry. I meant that my Thursday night thing would not be interrupted and the news would come out Friday, But, you may have space jumped and you don’t know it!

  9. ravensfan8780 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    I think Arod just needs to take the deal lose some money for next season and just come back and finish out his contract. MLB is trying to make this go away and work with him but he’s too damn stubborn and thinks he’s smarter then everyone else.

    • basedrum777 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:10 PM

      If he loses another 100 games or 150 games at his age he’s never coming back.

      • spursareold - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:37 PM

        ?? Sure he is. The Yankees would still have to pay him the rest of his contract, which means he’ll be on the roster when he comes back off of any hypothetical voluntary suspension. I think the contract runs through 2017.

  10. fm31970 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:08 PM

    Who woud’ve ever guessed A-Rod would be more disliked than Barry Bonds.

    • basedrum777 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:11 PM

      I think its a push.

  11. xpensivewinos - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:08 PM

    Seems like a lifetime ago when he was in Seattle and loved by all……

  12. mickmars - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:08 PM

    It’s also rumored that Rodriguez cuts out his mattress tags, runs with scissors, and doesn’t wait an hour to go swimming after eating. Just bury this slap dick already,please.

    • mazblast - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:02 PM

      Also, he doesn’t close the match cover before striking.

    • nofunleague - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:30 PM

      That’s nothing. I fry bacon with no shirt on.

  13. sdelmonte - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:11 PM

    Just because there really is a witch doesn’t mean you can’t have a witchhunt.

  14. cheeks9441 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:12 PM

    I really hate PED’s and the players who use them and what they’ve done to the game and yadda yadda yadda…..but I’m just not sure the punishment fits the crime in this case.

  15. whatthehellisansky - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:13 PM

    “Thanks for 2009, Alex. Don’t let the door hit you in your cheating ass on the way out.”
    -Yankee Fans Everywhere

    • fanofevilempire - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:22 PM

      don’t talk on my behalf, I don’t know you.

  16. Stiller43 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:15 PM

    Why are they trying to cut a deal if they have enough evidence to sufficiently get rid of him?

    Its clear MLB wants him gone, if they had that evidence, he’d already be gone..

    I dont like A-Rod, but i hope he calls their bluff. It works out either way…he really WILL get suspended for life or the MLB looks dumb

  17. rcali - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    Personally I hope A-Fraud doesn’t get suspended at all so the Yankees have to eat that pompous contract that they gave him. I know, I know, thumbs down from the Yankees fans who are finally realizing the team is in deep deep trouble. Yankees bought and managed themselves into a mess and the grim reaper eventually had to show up at the door.

    • fanofevilempire - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:24 PM

      blah,blah,blah, who are you, don’t answer, I don’t care.

    • whatthehellisansky - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:32 PM

      see: Howard, Ryan – 1B – Philadelphia Phillies
      also see: Amaro, Jr., Ruben – Philadelphia Phillies

      Thumbs down from all the phillies fans who are finally realizing the team is in deep deep trouble.

      • phillyphever - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:05 PM

        Eh, I knew the team was doomed since game 5 of the 2011 NLDS. Still hoping Ruben gets fired and they start rebuilding soon.

  18. whatthehellisansky - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:23 PM

    So what happens if A-rod decides to retire?

    Just says “you know what all this aint worth it if theyre gonna suspend me – i may as well just cut bait.”

    Does the suspension process still continue? Can you suspend someone who is retired?

    Would arod simply be banned from the game like Pete Rose is?

    Anyone know?

    • uyf1950 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:35 PM

      Yes you can still ban them. Remember Manny “being” Manny when he found out he was going to be suspended he retired. But the suspension still went into effect and just waited for him to return.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:41 PM

      If he retires he avoids the suspension (uyf shows what happens if you come back) but he also forfeits the rest of his contract.

      • uyf1950 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:44 PM

        TRUE. I probably could have been a little clearer but that was the implication from the last part of my previous comment. I’m glad you clarified it. Thanks.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:47 PM

        I assume most would know it from your comment, but you never know around these parts.

      • cackalackyank - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:14 PM

        Anyone know if he retires, forfeits his MLB contract, and moves to Japan…is there anything stopping him from signing a pretty lucrative deal there?

  19. uyf1950 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:33 PM

    I guess that’s one way for the Yankees to get out from under his contract. If he doesn’t or can’t appeal because of the CBA by my accounting the Yankees have saved themselves about $103MM +/- in guaranteed money and probably only an additional $6MM in milestone incentives. He probably would have only gotten to 660 HR’s anyway. But it frees up $27.5MM in AAV per based on the way MLB calculates a players salary for luxury tax purposes.

    It virtually assures the Yankees being able to sign quality FA’s (including Cano if those those) or make trades and still get under the tax threshold for 2014 with all A-Rod’s salary gone and all the other guys coming off the books at the end of this season. Without A-Rod’s salary on the books for the 2014 season the Yankees have less then $70MM in guaranteed salaries and that includes Jeter’s $9.5MM player option.

    The only guaranteed salaries for 2014 based on MLB AAV accounting for the tax without A-Rod are:
    Tex = $23MM +/-
    CC = $25MM +/-
    Jeter = $9.5MM (player option)
    Soriano = $4MM (based on the way the trade deal was structured)
    Ichiro = $6.5MM
    Wells = zero

  20. royhobbs7 - Jul 31, 2013 at 4:51 PM

    I believe that the larger issue is neither A-Rod’s desire for money or to play baseball again. If I can play psychologist for a moment, I believe that A-Rod’s primary concern is to how he is going to be perceived by history. By acceding to MLB’s wishes and agreeing to conditions of the ban, A-Rod will have to had claimed to take PEDs and conspired with Biogenesis. Consequently, it would be construed as guilt, and he would never be elected to the Hall Of Fame. This would definitively marginalize A-Rod’s arrogance and sense of entitlement. I just don’t think his ego can accept that (irrespective of his previous edict).

    • Alex K - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:00 PM

      He’s already admitted to using in the past. One more admission isn’t going to change anything on the HOF front.

    • tbutler704 - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:01 PM

      If he’s worried about the Hall of Fame then he’s really clueless. That ship sailed the day he admitted to steroid use years ago. At this point, he has a much chance of going in there as me.

    • uyf1950 - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:02 PM

      Just my opinion, But A-Rod can forget about the HOF regardless whether he takes the deal from MLB OR he fights whatever suspension/ban MLB imposes. That’s a given in my book. Whatever he decides to do fight Selig to the bitter end OR take a deal – IT’S GOING TO BE ALL ABOUT THE MONEY and what he thinks are his best chances. Notice I said what he thinks is his best chance to come out ahead in the money end of it.

      • bigharold - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:17 PM

        The money motivation shouldn’t be discounted but MLB isn’t going to get their life time ban. This has been, among other things, part of a concerted PR campaign. They’ve been plating stories for weeks. The notion that “Major League Baseball was unable to comment, citing the pendency on the ongoing investigation.” is laughable. Every story Bill Madden, and others, has been based solely on MLB sources. And, as you point out A-Rod, Bonds and Clemens aren’t ever likely to be voted into the HoF.

        So, from A-Rod’s point of view, why fight the suspension? At this point why not, .. what does he have to lose? Considering that even MLB thinks it a stretch to make a life time ban stick why not fight? If he accepts any deal he is in effect admitting wrong doing. If he fights he’ll likely get a 100-150 game suspension. Far fewer than what the “sources” are saying MLB is demanding and he also gets to say MLB was wrong and I proved it. Sure he’ll be glossing over the fact that he will likely eat a suspension but MLB is forcing him to fight. Stupid!

        Think about this;

        1. Nobody has done more to harm A-Rod than A-Rod. What MLB is doing is gratuitous and comes across as vindictive. Why?
        2. Had they just given A-Rod and Braun and the rest 50 game suspensions this would be over by now. The offenders would have their reputations properly sullied, they would have had “strike one” and all the negative press that goes along with the on going drama would be petering out by now.
        3. MLB is squandering their new found cooperation with the union. Their wanton disregard for the JDA will get the players attention. And, the stories that are being floated about the owners wanting to add provisions in the CBA to reduce or void contracts will have a chilling effect on labor relations and galvanize the players.

        MLB is screwing this up. It could have been over by now. They stand a chance that the arbitrator’s decision will be mixed in terms of guilt and length of suspension. The end game is getting PEDs out of baseball and Selig could have gone a long way towards doing that with less drama and not throwing away his relationship with the union

      • uyf1950 - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:57 PM

        bigharold, I don’t want to speculate on the odds of A-Rod getting a lifetime ban or not. But I do think that if he gets a suspension versus a lifetime ban that suspension will be for the rest of this year and all of the 2014 season. I do think a suspension will be for more then 100 games. if it comes down to a suspension.

        As a side note, I just wish MLB would get on with it. Announce whatever they are going to do and let the chips fall where they may. And get on with the sport of baseball.

      • cackalackyank - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:24 PM

        I concur uyf. A-rod’s HOF “cache” has been toast for a long, long, time. Money can buy a whole lot of comforting though…he can build a museum to himself and have money leftover if he appeals and wins. It seems that from the posturing in A-rod’s camp it has been clear they are trying to figure out the number’s. Which course of action will hurt the balance sheet the least? A real class act.

  21. Nofoolnodrool - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:02 PM

    I think Arod just needs to take the deal lose some money for next season and just come back and finish out his contract. MLB is trying to make this go away and work with him but he’s too damn stubborn and thinks he’s smarter then everyone else.

    Funny advice from a raven fan considering their support of Ray Lewis. At least no one is dead from encountering Arod…

  22. mazblast - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:07 PM

    I know that if he retires he forfeits the money, the Yankees don’t have to pay anyone, and his contract would no longer count for luxury tax purposes.

    My question is this–If he is suspended, I know he doesn’t get paid, but does the contract still count for luxury tax purposes? Logic says “no”, but given that there is often no logic in either baseball or contracts, what actually happens?

    • uyf1950 - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:12 PM

      We’ve discussed that several times on different blog here. If A-Rod is suspended or for that matter any of the players are suspended they forfeit their salary and also that salary that was forfeited does NOT count against the team in it’s calculation for luxury tax purposes.

      • jwbiii - Jul 31, 2013 at 10:04 PM

        I’d believe you if you could show me a Phillies salary list with Carlos Ruiz’s salary discounted of a Padres salary list with Yasmani Grandal’s salary discounted. The CBA is equivocal on this issue. It’s in Article XXIII.

  23. Old Gator - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:09 PM

    Raise your hand if you’re just plain sick and tired of the entire subject.

    • uyf1950 - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:12 PM

      Can you see my hand raised.

      • Walk - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:32 PM

        Is your the hand with only a single finger extended? If so it is clearly visible from here.

    • tbutler704 - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:15 PM

      Its well past time for MLB to shit or get off the can here, thats for sure.

    • bigharold - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:23 PM

      Hand raised and Arnold Horshack’s “OH, OH OH,..”

    • cackalackyank - Jul 31, 2013 at 7:25 PM

      Both. With middle finger extended…in A-rod’s general direction.

  24. Walk - Jul 31, 2013 at 5:34 PM

    I blame my kindle for that sentence. It should read: Is your hand the one with a single finger extended?

  25. thebadguyswon - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    I’m rooting for Arod at this point.

    • nbjays - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:44 PM

      One thing’s certain, whether MLB wins or A-Rod wins, your handle reflects the truth… so I guess you win. Does that make you a bad guy, too?

      • thebadguyswon - Jul 31, 2013 at 6:59 PM

        I was born a bad guy.

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