Major League Baseball got a little relief over the weekend as the arbitrator deciding the fate of Alex Rodriguez sided with the league in suspending Rodriguez.
While commissioner Bud Selig originally placed a 211-game ban on Rodriguez, Fredric Horowitz lowered the suspension to 162 games (a full season), including any playoff games.
A-Rod will be 39 when he’s eligible to play again, assuming he doesn’t win his appeal in U.S. District Court to overturn the suspension. Coming off a year with a hip injury and sub-par play when he was healthy, it doesn’t look good for Rodriguez to continue marching towards the all-time home run record.
In this instance, the words of the Von Trapp children from the movie The Sound of Music are so fitting — So long, farewell, Auf Weidersehen, goodbye — and for that matter, don’t let the door hit you on the way out.
The phrase “performance-enhancing drugs” is now synonymous with Rodriguez’s name. Not only does the Biogenesis scandal have his name written all over it, but Rodriguez has even admitted that he used PHDs from 2001-03 during his time with the Texas Rangers.
Rodriguez has earned more than $300 million in contracts since he signed his first big deal with the Rangers. It’s safe to say that all (or most) of that money has been earned with the aid of steroids.
As many MLB fans will agree, it’s time for Rodriguez to be gone from baseball. He’ll get the rest of the money guaranteed in his contract, but it’s time for his career to be over.
Outside of New York, Rodriguez is the biggest villain in the sport. And for him to pass the names of Willie Mays, Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron would be wrong.
Some people will point to Barry Bonds and it’s painful to think that he is at the top of the all-time home run list. However, just because one player got through the cracks and to the top of the mountain, that doesn’t mean another player should be allowed to do the same.
According to Horowitz, the evidence is overwhelming against A-Rod. He thumbed his nose at MLB, thinking he wouldn’t get caught cheating to get to the top of the mountain.
Rodriguez thought he could beat the system and he got caught.
For that, his days of being a professional baseball player should be done.
Now, all the New York Yankees need to do is make sure he never sees the field again. Of course, they’ll have to continue to pay him his money after his suspension is over. But the Yankees could do themselves (and baseball) a favor in not letting Rodriguez play for them anymore.
By doing that, the Yankees will save themselves all of the performance bonuses A-Rod was set to receive for hitting milestones. More than that, they’ll ensure that only one PED user made it to the top.
A-Rod doesn’t deserve to be at the top. He can take his money and go home. He’s nothing but a disgrace to the Yankees, to baseball and to himself.