Major League Baseball officials expect to hear from Alex Rodriguez concerning a deal they offered that would suspend the Yankees third baseman for this season and next in exchange for avoiding a lifetime ban and being able to collect much of the remaining money on his large contract, the New York Daily News reported Sunday.
If the embattled Rodriguez accepts the deal, the suspension will begin immediately and allow MLB to avoid arbitration in the process. It would also allow him the chance to retain the $60 million the Yankees would owe him from the point of his reinstatement through the end of his contract in 2017.
If the 38-year-old rejects the deal, commissioner Bud Selig is prepared to suspend Rodriguez in the coming days and ban him from playing again, a source close to the situation told the Daily News.
If there is a suspension, Rodriguez would fight it, a source close to the player told the Daily News.
MLB is said to have evidence that shows not only did Rodriguez use performance-enhancing drugs in recent years, but he also lied to league officials during an investigation of the scandal that has cast another drug shadow on the sport.
Ryan Braun, last season’s National League MVP, was suspended for the rest of the season without pay last week, and he subsequently admitted that he “made some mistakes.”
MLB has been caught up in an investigation of the Miami-based Biogenesis clinic for months. The company’s founder, Tony Bosch, has been cooperating with the case.
Rodriguez has stayed in the New York headlines, though he hasn’t played for the Yankees in 2013. He had hip surgery after a bad end to 2012 that has kept him off the field until recently.
His rehab assignment in the minors has not been without drama. A team doctor diagnosed Rodriguez with a quad strain, but Rodriguez got a second opinion that said he was able to play. The team was upset that he got a second opinion without informing the team.