Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

CTTP Staff Reacts to Alex Rodriguez Suspension

With Saturday’s announcement of an arbitrator’s ruling that New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez would receive a 162-game suspension and any games which the Yankees play in the postseason (instead of the original 211 games), the reaction has been heavily leaned toward the corner of MLB. I suppose you could say that’s a good thing.

I inquired the staff here at Call to the Pen of their take on the Alex Rodriguez matter.

Michael McFarlane:

Seems insane to me that he gets a penalty nearly three times as stiff as Braun’s. The whole ‘we’re extra mad because you lied’ angle of everything is very convenient for the Yankees’ payroll crunch situation, and overall just reeks of unprofessionalism and childishness, especially because Braun was guilty of the same things.

Travis Coverston:

ARod is a bigger face and name to baseball and the media than Braun. Baseball had to come down hard on someone and they chose the person who has been built up (or built himself up) the most. They had to make an example out of somebody but we won’t see if it helps until the next case of PED use happens. MLB has to punish future offenders the same as ARod or his sentencing will 100% be seen as unfair. I’m not a fan of the Yankees getting his salary off their payroll, but that’s a separate issue.

Yakyu Night Owl:

If the New York Yankees are able to afford Tanaka now without breaking the bank, this suspension would have all the signs of an engineered coincidence. The odor is familiar. There was this same sickly smell in the air during the collusion of ’85-’87. Interesting how Bud Selig always ends up connected to such things.

As for Alex Rodriguez, the persistent talk of NPB being an option is both laughable and lazy. Nobody is bigger than the game of baseball in Japan. Not Ichiro and Matsui in the past. Not Tanaka and Balentien in the present. Does anyone really think he would faithfully interact with fans, carry his own bags and wipe his own sweat?

Haven’t been a big A-Rod fan over the years. Haven’t felt much sympathy for his plight. At the same time, I’m not a big fan of witch hunts. Rather than pinning all the blame on one player in 2014, it would have been much better to begin ridding the sport of drugs when the problem first became an issue. Selig should have started to address this when he purchased the Pilots.

Sam Clancy:

I was surprised that they got A-Rod for a full 162, but I think that is what he should have received. He was accused of buying evidence from Biogenesis in an attempt to hide the truth. I don’t know what of that was used in the process, but his removal is a good thing for baseball that is, coincidentally, a good thing for the Yankees. Any conspiracy alleged beyond coincidence is crazy and should be viewed as such.

Andrew Padyk:

I have a feeling that there will be some negative blow back from this, either to the league, Selig, or to the Yankees. There had to be something else in this that we just may not know just yet. Having said that, as a Yankees fan, I hope this will be the last of this news. It’s been a distraction reading these stories about A-Rod and the world revolving around him, and hopefully, this will be the beginning point that he and the club finally part ways with each other.

Cordell Oberholtzer:

This may go down as the seminal moment in the steroid saga. Major League Baseball has successfully suspended a player who has never tested positive, but who clearly had so much evidence against him that this suspension was handed out regardless. Nothing could do more to dissuade players from taking PEDs than this outcome. Rodriguez is a fraud, a deceiver, and there is no difference between him and Lance Armstrong. Reconciliation is not an option: A-Rod will be forever dead to the baseball community. Good riddance.

Mark Reynolds:

Watching that 60 minutes promo just now, I feel like the A-Rod witch hunt comes down to this for MLB: in an attempt to remain relevant, any news is good news for the game, and A-Rod sells. Also, MLB turned a blind eye to PED use for more than a decade when no one cared. Now they are trying to re-write history.

As for me…

Can’t say this news shocked me, but there are some things disturbing here. The fact ARod got a full season without the presence of a positive test seems, well, off. Does the commish now possess and wield the ability to warrant any suspension he deems as fit?

Then consider the whole Biogenesis scandal. The other players that received suspensions due to their connection with the clinic took their suspensions. Rodriguez, ever the charlatan, decides to fight until the bitter end. He even took on his own team of attorneys in lieu of the MLBPA represent him. The union is why he was being given this opportunity, yet he spat in its face.

Of course, most folks are used to that from him.

What’s more troubling is that among the suspended players, how many tested positive? How many were suspended strictly based on the evidence? ANd, even a larger issue for me, the process of collecting said evidence.

Yes, this whole circus reeks of three-day-old dishwater.

I will add this. No matter what some may think, we are still, to some extent, in the steroid era. Players are still using and getting caught. The numbers of those using PEDs might be down, but their presence is not out. The punishment for usage is not serving as well as the players had hoped. This could be topic “a” when time for a new CBA rolls around.

In case you haven’t seen it or read the transcript, CBS News has last night’s 60 Minutes report on their website.

Tags: Alex Rodriguez MLB New York Yankees

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