Jon Heyman of CBS Sports is reporting that New York Yankees’ third baseman Alex Rodriguez has been suspended 162 games, or the equivalent of the entire 2014 season by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz. The ruling favors Major League Baseball and Commissioner Bud Selig, who handed down a 211-game suspension last summer after determining that A-Rod’s involvement with Biogenesis, an anti-aging clinic was distributing performance-enhancing drugs to multiple big league players, including Rodriguez. The suspension according to Heyman, also includes the entire postseason if the Yankees are to make it to the playoffs.
A-Rod’s legal team has stated all along that any lengthy suspension by Horowitz and MLB would be met with the filing of an injunction in federal court. Rodriguez will lose his entire 2014 salary, and his team, the New York Yankees will receive financial relief by not having the large contract on the books. This gives the team an opportunity to pursue A-Rod’s short term replacement as well as up their dollars in the pursuit of Japanese pitching sensation Masahiro Tanaka.
As reported earlier in the week, Rodriguez and his legal team were considering accepting a suspension of 65 games or less, but anything over that amount was considered by the former 3-time Most Valuable Player as extreme and over the top. While nothing is official, it doesn’t appear good for Rodriguez or the Yankees from a player standpoint, as A-Rod was most likely the team’s best option heading into the 2014 season.