MLB Hits Alex Rodriguez With 214-Game Ban - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

MLB Hits Alex Rodriguez With 214-Game Ban

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A-Rod, who has been rehabbing from hip surgery and quadriceps injury and hasn't played since his dismal performance in the playoffs last October, is still owed $86 million for the final four years of his contract with the Bronx Bombers. He is the highest paid player in professional baseball.

As CBS News correspondent Don Dahler reported, an arbitrator would have 25 days to rule on A-Rod's appeal, and the evidence against the player would be made public. If the suspension ultimately stands, he will lose around $34 million in salary.

The evidence is said to suggest Rodriguez bought or used steroids in 2010, 2011 and 2012, Heyman reported.

A-Rod has seen both cheers and jeers since joining the Yankees in 2004. He put up monster numbers in several seasons - winning two MVP awards while in pinstripes. In 2007, he signed a 10-year, $275 million contract and two years later, he led the Bronx Bombers to their 27thWorld Series title -the first championship of his career.

But since than that championship year, A-Rod has been downright awful in October, going 12 for 75 (.160) with zero home runs in the past three postseasons. Furthermore, he admitted that he used PEDs while playing with Texas a decade earlier, incurring the wrath of many fans and baseball writers.

Still, unless he decides not to appeal, Rodriguez was due to return to the Yankees lineup Monday night when New York plays at the Chicago White Sox.

"He's in there, and I'm going to play him," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Sunday.

Rodriguez finished a brief minor league injury rehab assignment on Saturday night at Double-A Trenton. After Friday night's game, A-Rod suggested the league and the Yankees were conspiring to thwart his return to the big leagues.

"There is more than one party that benefits from me not ever stepping back on the field. And that's not my teammates and it's not the Yankee fans," he said. "When all this stuff is going on in the background and people are finding creative ways to cancel your contract and stuff like that, I think that's concerning for me."

MLB reportedly shut down negotiations because of the comments.

"It's not surprising he's chosen to drag everyone through the mud," a league official told the New York Daily News. "In everything he said, he's been all over the page, accusing everyone of everything and coming off as so disingenuous. How can you possibly make deals with somebody like this?"

New York Daily News baseball columnist Bill Madden told CBS News that if Rodriguez is sidelined until 2015, don't expect to see him in pinstripes again.

"This is a guy who would then be 40 years old, having had two hip surgeries, so it's highly unlikely that he could ever even think about playing again," Madden said.

Despite his tarnished reputation, Rodriguez is one of the most prolific hitters in baseball history: The three-time MVP has hit 647 home runs (fifth on the all-time list) and his 1,950 runs batted in rank seventh all-time. He has led the American League in home runs five times and was the 1996 AL batting champ.

The latest baseball drug scandal was triggered in January when Miami New Times published documents linking many players to Biogenesis, the closed anti-aging clinic in Coral Gables, Fla.

In July, Milwaukee outfielder Ryan Braun, who won the 2011 NL MVP, agreed to a 65-game ban through the rest of the 2013 season for his role with the clinic. Last year, the Brewers slugger had been given a 50-game suspension for testing positive for elevated testosterone - but it was overturned because of a technicality with the handling of the urine sample.

According to the Associated Press, there have been 43 suspensions under the major league drug agreement since testing with penalties for first offenses started in 2005. The longest penalty served has been a 100-game suspension by San Francisco pitcher Guillermo Mota for a positive test for
 
Clenbuterol, his second drug offense.

Tampa Bay outfielder Manny Ramirez retired two years ago rather than face a 100-game suspension.

All-Stars Nelson Cruz, Jhonny Peralta and Everth Cabrera were banned 50 games apiece Monday when Major League Baseball disciplined 13 players in a drug case -- the most sweeping punishment since the Black Sox scandal nearly a century ago.
 
Ryan Braun's 65-game suspension last month and previous punishments bring to 18 the total number of players disciplined for their relationship to Biogenesis of America, a closed anti-aging clinic in Florida accused of distributing banned performing-enhancing drugs.

CBS News, The Associated Press

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