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The A-Rod hearing resumes today

Nov 18, 2013, 10:30 AM EDT

Alex Rodriguez AP AP

I can’t decide if the resumption of the Alex Rodriguez hearing today means that we’ll hear less silly p.r. spin from the lawyers because they’ll be busy with substantive casework again or if it means we’ll hear more because, rather than seek out the media each day, they’ll have to walk by them as they go in and out of MLB’s offices for the hearing. Guess we’ll see!

Anyway, things do get going again today. As we’ve noted in recent days, a couple of the bigger issues A-Rod’s team is going to try to push are (a) the provenance of much of MLB’s evidence; and (b) putting Bud Selig on the stand.

The former issue involves MLB’s investigative methods. Specifically, whether it knowingly obtained stolen Biogenesis evidence to build its case and whether it used other underhanded and extreme tactics to gain the cooperation of witnesses. A-Rod’s lawyers are trying to tell a tale of an out-of-control MLB, hellbent on nailing A-Rod to a wall and willing to do anything to make it happen. MLB, of course, is saying it did nothing wrong. All of that is sexy. It’s quite possible, though, that none of it matters, as the the arbitrator may only concern himself with what evidence is in front of him, not whether it got to him via sleazy means.

As for Selig on the stand: it seems unlikely, but clearly A-Rod’s team would like to make the league sweat.

The hearings will last all week and through the weekend, with the arbitrator saying he wants it done before Thanksgiving. The ruling, however, may not come out until a month afterward.

  1. Patrick R. - Nov 18, 2013 at 11:08 AM

    For some reason, for a second, I read this headline as, “A-Rod Hearing Resumes Today,” and I thought why is A-Rod conducting job interviews, and for what.

    Turns out I’m just incapable of completely reading a news headline.

    • nbjays - Nov 18, 2013 at 12:02 PM

      A-Rod posted a help wanted ad for a centaur groomer?

      • Patrick R. - Nov 18, 2013 at 12:36 PM

        That is probably the likeliest scenario.

    • Old Gator - Nov 18, 2013 at 5:36 PM

      I thought it meant that A-Roid had been deaf until this morning.

      • Patrick R. - Nov 18, 2013 at 6:09 PM

        That could easily be an article in The Onion

  2. churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Nov 18, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    Specifically, whether it knowingly obtained stolen Biogenesis evidence to build its case and whether it used other underhanded and extreme tactics to gain the cooperation of witnesses

    For you lawyers out there, does this even matter?

  3. anxovies - Nov 18, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    The arbitrator should and probably will concern himself with weighing the evidence but underhanded and extreme tactics in collecting it always bring a concern about the reliability of the evidence. My understanding is that this is an experienced arbitrator and the best guess is that he will allow some evidence of how the documents were collected because it goes to the claim that ARod is being singled out for additional punishment. ARod’s lawyers have an interest in getting as much testimony as possible on the subject to obtain information for the civil suit.

    • dlf9 - Nov 18, 2013 at 5:57 PM

      My understanding is that this is an experienced arbitrator …

      Very experienced and well regarded in the labor arbitration field.

      the best guess is that he will allow some evidence of how the documents were collected because it goes to the claim that ARod is being singled out for additional punishment.

      Agreed. One fundamental tenant of “just caue” for discipline under a collective bargaining agreement is that similarly situated offenders must be disciplined similarly. This evidence goes to that claim and should be admitted for that purpose.

      Also, while “chain of custody” in labor arbitration is not as stringent as in a criminal trial, this evidence also goes to whether the purported BioGenesis documents are, in fact, really what they purport to be. Some documents that a party paid six figures to obtain which were reportedly stolen from the back of a car at least raise some questions of evidentiary reliability.

      • dlf9 - Nov 18, 2013 at 5:58 PM

        I have now just proven that I can’t properly use HTML tags. The first and third paragraphs above are quotes from the prior poster. Sorry for any confusion.

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