After a bizarre few weeks, in which the show-down between Alex Rodriguez and Major League Baseball has taken more twists and turns than a rocky mountain road, an end is finally in sight.
At noon today, MLB commissioner Bud Selig is expected to announce a suspension that will keep A-Rod off of a Major League Baseball field until the 2015 season, at which time the disgraced slugger will be 40 years old. The expected ban would see A-Rod sidelined for 214 games and cost him approximately $34 million.
Originally reports were that Selig would invoke the rarely used “best interest of the game” clause to keep A-Rod off the diamond even while undergoing an expected appeal. However, sources close to the situation say that Selig and Major League Baseball have moved away from that line of punishment and will only look to suspend Rodriguez under the MLB’s drug policy, meaning that if A-Rod appeals his suspension, as is expected, he can be back in the lineup tonight as the Yankees begin a three game series against the White Sox in Chicago.
Just a few days ago the idea of Alex Rodriguez ever stepping foot onto a baseball field again seemed in serious doubt, but after weeks of posturing it looks like Rodriguez will get his chance to re-join the Yankees tonight in Chicago.
According to baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement, A-Rod’s appeal hearing would be heard within 20 days, at which time the arbitrator would be expected to issue his finding within 25 days of the hearing’s opening. If all goes according to plan that means that A-Rod should learn his fate by mid-September at the latest.
According to sources, upwards of 12 other players, including Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli, will be suspended for at least 50 games today, of all the players rumored to be suspended today, Rodriguez is the only one expected to file an appeal with the players union.