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Alex Rodriguez Suspension Now 162 Games

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#1 Seth Stohs

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 11:22 AM

An arbiter ruled today on the Alex Rodriguez case. He will miss the entire 2014 season after being given a 162 game suspension.

Previously, he had been given a random 211 game suspension. He appealed, and it went to the arbiter.

Now, A-Rod is likely to appeal this suspension.

And he should. The Joint Drug Agreement says that a first suspension is to be 50 games for a first failed drug test. Of course, Rodriguez has not failed a drug test since MLB set its rules and procedures for testing. Rodriguez has been suspended, in part, for his associations with Bosch (the Miami guy).

Ryan Braun accepted a 65 game suspension late in the 2013 season when his Brewer team was already out of contention. He did not appeal for some reason.

What do you think?

#2 biggentleben

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 11:34 AM

He's entitled to appeal as he really shouldn't be beyond 50 games based on what his own union negotiated. Whether he's guilty or not, that's another thing. I think Braun knew his guilt from his earlier test and took the suspension because of that. Fighting also means this hanging over his head for longer while he appeals, and Braun is someone who comes off VERY concerned about what others think about him...ARod, not so much.
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#3 cmathewson

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 11:35 AM

I think he has failed drug tests. He was on the lists that the Mitchell committee forced the MLB to release, which the MLBPA wanted suppressed.

In this case, he was pulling a Lance Armstrong: Trying to build a program that uses doping in ways that are largely undetected by the current approved testing procedure. He actively recruited players into the program, similar to what Bonds did with BALCO.

These are not conjectures. Several players took their 50 game suspensions and gave detailed depositions on how A-Roid was trying to build a side business of undetectable doping, in open defiance of the spirit of the law, if not its letter. After seeing the Armstrong saga play out in all its gory detail, I'm surprised there is not more outrage towards A-Roid. Armstrong's big defense was "I've never failed a drug test." Yeah, but you doped every day for 10 years.

IMHO, this is the kind of thing that should get him banned for life and stripped of his trophies, as Armstrong was. I don't understand the resistance to anti-doping in Baseball, when every other sport on the planet is more strict towards doping.
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#4 biggentleben

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 11:44 AM

I think he has failed drug tests. He was on the lists that the Mitchell committee forced the MLB to release, which the MLBPA wanted suppressed.

In this case, he was pulling a Lance Armstrong: Trying to build a program that uses doping in ways that are largely undetected by the current approved testing procedure. He actively recruited players into the program, similar to what Bonds did with BALCO.

These are not conjectures. Several players took their 50 game suspensions and gave detailed depositions on how A-Roid was trying to build a side business of undetectable doping, in open defiance of the spirit of the law, if not its letter. After seeing the Armstrong saga play out in all its gory detail, I'm surprised there is not more outrage towards A-Roid. Armstrong's big defense was "I've never failed a drug test." Yeah, but you doped every day for 10 years.

IMHO, this is the kind of thing that should get him banned for life and stripped of his trophies, as Armstrong was. I don't understand the resistance to anti-doping in Baseball, when every other sport on the planet is more strict towards doping.


I'm not so sure it's anti-doping resistance as much as a requirement for evidence, which has been questionable at best in this case, not to mention the illegal manner that much of the evidence that is present was acquired, which would have it completely thrown out of any legal proceeding. Armstrong had the rumors for years before concrete evidence came forward, and once it did, he was suspended. I'd completely support suspension if similar viable evidence came forward, but that hasn't been the case here so far.

Don't get me wrong. I am not a fan of ARod and his arrogance in the situation at all, but he deserves every protection of innocence until proven guilty that any of us do.
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#5 jm3319

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 11:54 AM

Don't get me wrong. I am not a fan of ARod and his arrogance in the situation at all, but he deserves every protection of innocence until proven guilty that any of us do.


I agree 100%. However, this is the land of sports and public opinion where people are guilty until proven innocent, which is a tough spot considering it's practically impossible to prove someone DIDN'T do something.

As much as everyone knows A-Rod was using steroids, 162 games is still unreasonable based on MLB's own rules, not to mention their lack of any solid evidence.

#6 cmathewson

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 12:01 PM

I agree 100%. However, this is the land of sports and public opinion where people are guilty until proven innocent, which is a tough spot considering it's practically impossible to prove someone DIDN'T do something.

As much as everyone knows A-Rod was using steroids, 162 games is still unreasonable based on MLB's own rules, not to mention their lack of any solid evidence.


I would not assume they had no solid evidence. Because they were being challenged legally, they could not release the evidence they had. Arbiters are like judges. The parties agree to accept their judgements to avoid court. A-Roid's lawyers accepted arbitration because they didn't like their chances in court. Without solid evidence, this thing would have been thrown out of court on Day 1. Ergo, the MLB had solid evidence.
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#7 kab21

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 12:55 PM

The problem here isn't that ARod isn't a pile a crap but rather that the MLB is just making up the law as it goes.

I think there is enough evidence to issue ARod a 50 game suspension as a first offense w/o a failed drug test but there is nothing that resembles a 162 or 211 game suspension in the CBA. They are of course targeting him due his likely obstruction of the investigation but then directly say that is why he is being suspended.

#8 JB_Iowa

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 01:23 PM

I'm not so sure it's anti-doping resistance as much as a requirement for evidence, which has been questionable at best in this case, not to mention the illegal manner that much of the evidence that is present was acquired, which would have it completely thrown out of any legal proceeding. Armstrong had the rumors for years before concrete evidence came forward, and once it did, he was suspended. I'd completely support suspension if similar viable evidence came forward, but that hasn't been the case here so far.

Don't get me wrong. I am not a fan of ARod and his arrogance in the situation at all, but he deserves every protection of innocence until proven guilty that any of us do.


This isn't a criminal proceeding. MLB has no power to put A-Rod in jail. They do have the power to affect his livelihood and legacy but that is the same as in many civil cases.

To me, the standard would be "preponderance of the evidence" certainly not proof beyond a reasonable doubt. And a neutral arbitrator has now found that A-Rod deserved to be suspended for 162 games.

Until we have the opportunity to read his full decision (if we ever get that), we don't know what evidence he considered at arriving at his conclusion that a 162 game suspension was warranted.

But I'd pretty much guess that there had to be something there for him to go beyond the 50 games.

#9 mnfireman

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 05:02 PM

I think MLB can do what they want, look at the Pete Rose and "Shoeless" Joe Jackson lifetime bans. By limiting it to certain number of games they opened themselves up to A-Roid appealing and whining. Ban him for life and be done with it. If MLB has to also ban Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, Palmeiro, etc... then so be it, they shouldn't have cheated.

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 06:18 PM

On the surface, it would appear MLB isn't following its own collectively bargained rules. Never a good position to try to defend. On the other hand, you're sort of forced to come to the conclusion there had to be lots of evidence for an arbiter to come to this ruling. I don't know what to think, really, other than I doubt this is the last we've heard of this and there are plenty of legal fees yet to be spent I'd bet.

In the meantime, there appears to be money for the Yankees to spend in 2014. For the time being, anyway.

What a mess.

#11 biggentleben

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 06:41 PM

I think MLB can do what they want, look at the Pete Rose and "Shoeless" Joe Jackson lifetime bans. By limiting it to certain number of games they opened themselves up to A-Roid appealing and whining. Ban him for life and be done with it. If MLB has to also ban Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, Palmeiro, etc... then so be it, they shouldn't have cheated.


The gambling is part of the CBA, though, and it has always been against the rules for players to do such. This punishment would be outside of the CBA, and that would not hold up legally if it was challenged.
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#12 jm3319

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 08:05 PM

I think MLB can do what they want, look at the Pete Rose and "Shoeless" Joe Jackson lifetime bans. By limiting it to certain number of games they opened themselves up to A-Roid appealing and whining. Ban him for life and be done with it. If MLB has to also ban Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, Palmeiro, etc... then so be it, they shouldn't have cheated.


How can they ban Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, etc when MLB didn't even test for steroids when they played? I'm not saying they didn't use steroids, of course they did. But the league didn't have any way of testing or policing the game when these players were playing.

#13 kab21

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 08:14 PM

I think MLB can do what they want, look at the Pete Rose and "Shoeless" Joe Jackson lifetime bans. By limiting it to certain number of games they opened themselves up to A-Roid appealing and whining. Ban him for life and be done with it. If MLB has to also ban Bonds, Clemens, McGwire, Palmeiro, etc... then so be it, they shouldn't have cheated.


The only grounds that the MLB has for a stiffer suspension is that he tampered with their investigation. If they are using this in their argument then they should directly state that. I would be surprised if ARod wasn't involved in some way but they actually need proof if they state it.

the system is designed so that the arbitrator is neutral but the MLB has already fired one arbitrator that disagreed with their decision. Of course the MLBPA could fire an arbitrator but I can see them letting ARod fry.
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#14 kydoty

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Posted 11 January 2014 - 11:11 PM

I think the problem here is that Major League Baseball has ****ed up this whole situation so badly that they're making me pull for A-Rod, and I never ever want to be in favor of anything that is beneficial to A-Rod.
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#15 PseudoSABR

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 01:58 AM

This isn't an MLB shill that decided the punishment, it's a goddamn independent arbitrator that gave Arod the season ban. While MLB might be going beyond the terms of latest CoB, clearly such a case deserves individual jurisprudence.

In Arod's case, there's simply a ponderous of evidence that defies the common rules. It's just ****ing sad. Sad that we lose one of the greatest players of the game to unadulterated egoism, and worse, puts the record book in such unsteady waters.

#16 cmathewson

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 09:59 AM

I echo Pseudo's sentiments. It's sad that Bonds, Rodriguez, McGuire and Clemons will be in the class with Rose. They all would have been HOF players without the juice. Not sure about Palmeiro. He was a slow slap hitter before the juice. Still, such a bloody waste of talent.
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#17 thetank

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Posted 12 January 2014 - 05:32 PM

The Yankees may have saved a few $$$s in 2014 but are not they still on the books for 3-4 years costing $80 million?

Hopefully a few more bad contracts and the Yankees will stay out of FA.

#18 JB_Iowa

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 09:27 AM

The Yankees may have saved a few $$$s in 2014 but are not they still on the books for 3-4 years costing $80 million?

Hopefully a few more bad contracts and the Yankees will stay out of FA.


I'm sure the Yankees are looking for ways to void the contract but we can only hope that they stay on the hook. No one will ever convince me that they weren't complicit in this mess.

#19 markominne

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 11:32 AM

I would suggest that MLB's [Selig's] actions on the Rodriguez case undermine the commissioner's office, the Joint Drug Agreement, and the commissioner's powers under the "best interests of the game" provisions. Rodriquez has not tested positive under any of the agreed-upon JDA procedures, so he's not liable for suspension under the JDA. Apparently Selig and others felt that there was sufficient evidence from other sources to indicate that Rodriguez had in fact used PEDs in violation of the agreement. OK, I get that. However, then imposing a penalty in excess of those spelled out for a positive first or second offense under the JDA makes this look exactly like what Rodriquez has publicly complained about: a personal vendetta. Further, when looked at closely, the only party who benefits from the suspension decision is the New York Yankees, who dodge one full year of their $24 million/year obligation to Rodriguez. As a result, the commissioner's office looks like a toadie to the Yankees, both the arbitration process and the "good of the game" provision become tools to use for whatever private interest the commissioner decides he wishes to serve, and the JDA becomes an apparent joke, it being tacitly admitted that it can't catch abusers, and imposed only upon those who won't stand up to the commissioner.

A year and a half ago it appeared that MLB had gotten its act together on PED enforcement. Now, it appears that there is no effective due process in place, and the agreement is not worth the paper it's written on. And all of this in the pursuit of Alex Rodriquez who appears to be nearly certainly guilty of PED abuse, and who would probably have accepted a 100-game, second-time penalty had the commissioner's office not overreached themselves.

#20 nokomismod

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 11:43 AM

I'm surprised no one has commented on the 60 Minutes segment last night. I thought it was interesting, but I don't think CBS dug very deep. It had the feeling of Bud Selig calling someone high up at CBS and saying, "Would you like a juicy story to expose Arod? The only catch is you cannot make MLB look bad". I'm kind of surprised that MLB didn't have 60 Minutes edit out the part where Bosch insinuated that all the players are doping.


CMathewson, you mentioned that MLB's testing is way behind other sports, but I would argue that compared to the NFL and college football it is more strict. I think some NFL type fans that sort of follow baseball wish that baseball would just let the whole PED thing slide and go back to the "Glory Days" of 98 with Bonds, Sosa, and McGwire.



I agree that it the Yankees, Selig, and Bosch are the only ones that benefit from this mess.

#21 JB_Iowa

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:11 PM

I'm surprised no one has commented on the 60 Minutes segment last night. I thought it was interesting, but I don't think CBS dug very deep. It had the feeling of Bud Selig calling someone high up at CBS and saying, "Would you like a juicy story to expose Arod? The only catch is you cannot make MLB look bad". I'm kind of surprised that MLB didn't have 60 Minutes edit out the part where Bosch insinuated that all the players are doping.


CMathewson, you mentioned that MLB's testing is way behind other sports, but I would argue that compared to the NFL and college football it is more strict. I think some NFL type fans that sort of follow baseball wish that baseball would just let the whole PED thing slide and go back to the "Glory Days" of 98 with Bonds, Sosa, and McGwire.



I agree that it the Yankees, Selig, and Bosch are the only ones that benefit from this mess.



I missed the 60 minutes segment but have been wondering whether the arbitrator appeared (was apparently scheduled according to mlbpa statement of disgust).

Did he appear? What did he say?

#22 Dman

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:35 PM

I might be a bit of an A-Rod hater but am trying to be objective about this issue. I do have some issue's with MLB going above the 50 game suspension especially since they don't have him testing positive. However, just like some court cases allow for punitive damages I think that given the accusations, that same principal could apply to A-Rod in this case. If he was truly flaunting ways around the rules and trying to cover up his involvement etc. then I personally think he deserves the extra time. It also should serve as a deterrent for any other players trying to skirt the rules as the stakes are for non-compliance can be higher if the violations are egregious.

#23 Linus

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:56 PM

My understanding is the punishment is not based on the regular drug testing schedule, rather that A-Rod was guilty of "obstructing the process". Since this involved many other players and it appears A-Rod played a large role, they felt justified in issuing a greater suspension.

I think teams should be required to pay the salary in some fashion (not to the player) so they have an incentive to not tolerate doping. Part of me wants him to beat this so the Yankees are stuck paying and playing him. He's done as a player.

#24 nokomismod

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 12:56 PM

I missed the 60 minutes segment but have been wondering whether the arbitrator appeared (was apparently scheduled according to mlbpa statement of disgust).

Did he appear? What did he say?

The arbitrator did not appear. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but those who appeared were Selig, MLB's COO Rob Manfred, Bosch, and Arod's attorney. Here is a summary via CBS
http://www.cbssports...es-sunday-night

#25 JB_Iowa

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 01:24 PM

The arbitrator did not appear. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but those who appeared were Selig, MLB's COO Rob Manfred, Bosch, and Arod's attorney. Here is a summary via CBS
http://www.cbssports...es-sunday-night


Thank you.

To me it would have been totally inappropriate for the arbitrator to be on -- and I understand why the MLBPA would be upset.

And Selig should have stayed off. If he wasn't going to testify at the hearing, he should have shut up now as well. He should have just let Manfred represent the Commissioner's office.

#26 Dman

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Posted 13 January 2014 - 01:27 PM

My understanding is the punishment is not based on the regular drug testing schedule, rather that A-Rod was guilty of "obstructing the process". Since this involved many other players and it appears A-Rod played a large role, they felt justified in issuing a greater suspension.

I think teams should be required to pay the salary in some fashion (not to the player) so they have an incentive to not tolerate doping. Part of me wants him to beat this so the Yankees are stuck paying and playing him. He's done as a player.


I like that idea as it gives teams incentive to make sure their players are not doping because they will pay the salary to charity or baseball pension fund or something. Letting the team completely off hook doesn't hold them accountable in any way.

I understand a team cannot control what a player might decide to ingest to enhance performance so it might be slightly unfair but if a larger incentive for not breaking the rules existed I think it would help.

#27 thetank

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Posted 14 January 2014 - 08:39 AM

Because ARod is appealing in federal court documents were released showing the instructions on when and how to use steroids in order to avoid being caught.

Wonder how many more labs are out there?

#28 JB_Iowa

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Posted 07 February 2014 - 07:45 PM

And, now, NO MORE APPEAL:

http://sports.yahoo....-002508566.html

http://espn.go.com/n...turn-suspension

#29 Guest_USAFChief_*

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Posted 08 February 2014 - 05:23 PM

And, now, NO MORE APPEAL:

http://sports.yahoo....-002508566.html

http://espn.go.com/n...turn-suspension

"Wait...what? I'll have to testify? Under OATH??

Never mind."