The career of New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez might be finished. He reportedly has an ultimatum from the league: accept a suspension or face a lifetime ban from baseball. Rodriguez, who is embroiled in the Biogenesis drug scandal, plans to fight the suspension, the NY Daily News reports.
MLB officials appear to have enough evidence of Rodriguez's involvement with the Biogenesis clinic to warrant an historic lifetime ban from baseball. Equipped with the evidence, officials offered Rodriguez the deal of foregoing arbitration and accepting a suspension until the 2015 season, or face a lifetime ban from the sport.
Accepting the deal would effectively end the 38-year-old's career, but it'd give him the chance to collect the $60 million that the Yankees would owe him for the 2015 to 2017 seasons.
Rodriguez plans to stick to his story that he did nothing wrong and decline any deal involving a suspension, according to a source close to him.
"If there is a suspension," the source told NY Daily News, "he will fight it."
Taking the deal would end Rodriguez's season this year, and it'd keep him out of baseball for all of next season. If he refuses the deal, MLB commissioner Bud Selig is expected to pursue a lifetime ban to keep Rodriguez from ever playing again in the pros.
Selig is believed to have "hundreds of emails, text messages and phone records that show Rodriguez engaged in performance-enhancing drug use in 2010, 2011 and 2012, and possibly longer, and that he and his representatives impeded Selig's investigation," The News wrote on Sunday.
Biogenesis of America, the now-closed anti-aging clinic in South Florida, allegedly distributed performance-enhancing drugs to numerous athletes. Evidence obtained through the MLB's investigation of Biogenesis led last week to the 65-game suspension of Milwaukee Brewers slugger Ryan Braun.
The 2011 National League MVP cut a deal with MLB officials, and the league hopes other players involved will follow his lead.
MLB officials are expected to deal with Rodriguez before disciplining other players, and they hope for Rodriguez's decision by Monday.