It’s been almost six months since we first heard about the Miami based anti aging clinic that was allegedly pedaling performance enhancing drugs to more than 20 MLB players. And here we are, waiting with bated breath to find out exactly how Major League Baseball will deal with these dopers. We have already seen Ryan Braun served with a 67 game suspension that will cover the remainder of the 2013 season. Now word is Nelson Cruz will be suspended this week. Braun’s suspension doesn’t hurt the Brewers because they are not in a pennant race. Cruz’s absence is much more noticeable for a Texas team that seems playoff bound.
But what about the big fish? The 1,000 pound marlin that Bud Selig would love to reel in and mount on his wall of shame. The word around the baseball universe is that the amount of evidence the league has on Alex Rodriguez far surpasses the amount they had on Braun. The analogy has been used that the league has “a skyscraper of evidence on A-Rod compared to a Lego they had on Braun.” It seems as though Bud Selig is absolutely fed up with Alex Rodriguez because insiders are claiming that Selig is getting ready to put the final nail in Rodriguez’s coffin.
The team A-Rod has hired to defend him has said that they will fight any suspension handed down to Alex. This was stated just after word had leaked that the commissioner’s office offered Rodriguez a deal. Accept a plea of a suspension for the rest of this season and all of next season and Selig would not seek to ban him for life. Now that it seems Rodriguez will fight the ban instead of taking the deal, Selig is no longer messing around. A-Rod could appeal the ban based on the collectively agreed drug policy and he would still be eligible to play during that appeal process. Selig wants to make sure that doesn’t happen.
The commissioner now plans to use the Collective Bargaining Agreement to ban Alex Rodriguez rather than the drug policy. What’s the difference, you ask? Well, according to Article XI Section A1b of the CBA, the commissioner has the ability to ban a player for life based on preserving the integrity of the game of baseball. In this situation, Rodriguez can still appeal but he would not be eligible to play through the process. Also, instead of having an arbitration hearing to decide his fate, A-Rod would instead be appealing to very man that enacted the punishment, Mr. Bud Selig. Needless to say, Rodriguez would lose the appeal.
A-Rod could then take MLB to court but at that time, MLB would move to ban Alex based on the drug policy, to which he could also appeal. So Rodriguez and the MLB would be locked into a court case and an arbitration hearing. So lets talk scenarios.
Best scenario for Alex: He wins the court case and the CBA ban is dropped and then the arbitrator rules in his favor for the drug policy ban. No way the arbitrator lets him walk with the mountain of evidence he has against him. He still serves a severe suspension but is able to attempt a return to the game after a certain amount of time and look to collect on the remaining $60-75 million left on his contract.
Worst scenario for Alex: He loses the court case so therefore the arbitration hearing is moot and he is banned from the game for life. Never being eligible for employment in any regard by Major League Baseball. Plus he loses the rest of his money and the Yankees get out of a major contract.
It’s hard not to ask yourself why this man would even consider fighting at this point. Selig isn’t f**king around.0