NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Major League Baseball could use a clause in the collective bargaining agreement to tack penalties on top of a potential suspension if investigators conclude that Alex Rodriguez interfered in the league’s Biogenesis probe, according to the New York Daily News.
The Yankees third baseman has been linked to the shuttered Florida anti-aging clinic at the center of baseball’s latest performance-enhancing drugs scandal. The Miami New Times published a bombshell in January that said A-Rod’s name appeared multiple times in the reported records of Biogenesis operator Anthony Bosch.
A-Rod could reportedly face a suspension of 100 games. But according to the Daily News, that number might turn out to be on the low side.
MLB investigators are looking into whether A-Rod “actively impeded baseball’s investigation,” the paper reported. If the league determines that was the case, a “just cause” clause in the CBA could be invoked to levy more penalties.
“(P)layers may be disciplined for just cause for conduct that is materially detrimental or materially prejudicial to the best interests of Baseball including, but not limited to, engaging in conduct in violation of federal, state or local law,” the clause reads, according to the Daily News.
The New York Times and Daily News both reported in April that, per sources, baseball believes A-Rod purchased documents from a former Biogenesis employee.
Rodriguez, who previously admitted to using PEDs from 2001-03, has denied the Biogenesis accusations. Milwaukee Brewers star Ryan Braun was among multiple other players tied to the clinic.
Rodriguez will reportedly meet with MLB investigators on Friday.
Citing a source in a separate article, Daily News writer Bill Madden wrote that “MLB may already have more than it needs to suspend A-Rod … Braun and others for a lot more than just 100 games on drug violations alone.”
The source told Madden that the league was “going for the nuclear option.”
A-Rod picked up a hit on Wednesday in his sixth rehab game. The 37-year-old is 2 for 15 in the minors as he returns from offseason hip surgery.
“This process, there’s going to be some good days and some bad days, but it was a good day,” he said after the game with Class A Tampa.
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