Alex Rodriguez was suspended Monday through the 2014 MLB season months after the superstar baseball player was first cited in connection with the Biogenesis Clinic in South Florida. Major League Baseball suspended 12 other players who were named in the Biogenesis report including Nelson Cruz of the Texas Rangers and Jhonny Peralta of the Detroit Tigers. It’s perhaps the end of the road for A-Rod, as his suspension cites the use of PEDS.
While 12 players were suspended for 50 games, Major League Baseball threw the book at Rodriguez by suspending him 211 regular season games and postseason play in 2013 and 2014.
Selig stated “Rodriguez’s discipline under the Basic Agreement is for attempting to cover-up his violations of the program by engaging in a course of conduct intended to obstruct and frustrate the Office of the Commissioner’s investigation.” Rodriguez has been accused of using performance-enhancing drugs throughout his career. In February 2009, Alex Rodriguez admitted his use of the performance enhancing drugs testosterone and Primobolan, which is an anabolic steroid. Rodriguez stated that he used PEDs while he was a member of the Texas Rangers from 2001-2003. Although A-Rod admitted using performance enhancing drugs as a member of the Texas Rangers, Rodriguez maintained his innocence of the use of PEDs during his career with the New York Yankees.
In 2004, Rodriguez signed a 10-year deal worth $252 million, then the richest deal in sports.
Rodriguez has until Thursday to appeal his suspension, and he has every intention to do so. After the verdict was in, Rodriguez brushed off questions about his use of PEDs and called his situation a nightmare. MLBPA executive director Michael Weiner stated; “For the player appealing, Alex Rodriguez, we agree with his decision to fight his suspension. We believe that the Commissioner has not acted appropriately under the Basic Agreement. Mr. Rodriguez knows that the Union, consistent with its history, will defend his rights vigorously.” The New York Yankees were also very hesitant to show support for A-Rod in past weeks, but the organization has decided to bring him back to the team immediately. The Yankees called Rodriguez up from double-a affiliate Trenton Thunder to play in the series against the Chicago White Sox.
Among a myriad of speculation of what will happen next, A-Rod went 1 for 4 with a single and a strikeout in an 8-1 loss on Monday. A-Rod is scheduled to continue playing in the pinstripes until his appeal is heard, which could take until November or December.
Alex Rodriguez was once a young phenom with unlimited potential and hall of fame caliber numbers. In the steroid clouded era of Bonds, McGwire, and many others, A-Rod was considered the “good guy” who was clean; he was the one that could break all the tainted records.
Rodriguez currently has a lifetime batting average of .300, a .384 on base percentage lifetime, and has 647 home runs. These numbers are unquestionably hall of fame numbers and some of the best numbers all time. Unfortunately for Rodriguez, hall of fame caliber players who were suspected of using performance enhancing drugs including Bonds, McGwire, and Roger Clemens have been left off recent hall of fame ballots.
A-Rod was once the hope of the future who could change the game forever, but now he is just another juicer with a tarnished legacy.
Only time will tell what the fate of A-Rod is, but his image is already shattered in the eyes of the public and fellow ball players. Bud Selig hopes that Rodriguez’s hefty suspension will serve as a deterrent of performance enhancing drugs for current and future MLB players.
In the annals of Major League Baseball, the steroid era will stand alone in infamy and create many what-if scenarios along with what could have been. Would Barry Bonds have broken home run records? Would Roger Clemens have been as dominant as he was? Would these players have had hall of fame careers without the use of PEDs? Will any of these players ever get into the hall of fame?
Written By: Gregory Douglas