Friday, April 20, 2018
Sports

Report: A-Rod in talks to shorten ban

NEW YORK — Alex Rodriguez is negotiating a deal with Major League Baseball that would allow him to avoid a lifetime ban for his role in baseball's latest performance-enhancing drug investigation, ESPN's Outside the Lines reported Wednesday.

Rodriguez's representatives, who have consistently said the Yankees star would fight any attempt to suspend him, are discussing a settlement that would keep him off the field through next season, the program reported.

MLB has considerable documented evidence connecting Rodriguez to Biogenesis, a now-shuttered anti-aging clinic in Miami that is accused of supplying athletes with PEDs, Outside the Lines said. MLB had evidence supporting accusations Rodriguez attempted to coerce at least one witness in the investigation, the program reported.

Rodriguez is one of 14 players MLB hopes to discipline for their connection to Biogenesis founder Tony Bosch within the next few days, the Associated Press said.

MLB officials have met with the Major League Baseball Players Association and discussed their intent to discipline players. Most of those cited by MLB are expected to agree to disciplinary action without going through the appeal process, according to several media reports. The investigation isn't likely to be wrapped up until at least the weekend.

Others accused in media reports include a trio of 2013 All-Stars: Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz, Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera and Tigers shortstop Jhonny Peralta. Most of the players face 50-game bans as first-time offenders, the Associated Press said.

Though MLB told the union which players it intended to suspend, it hadn't issued formal notices of discipline. The sides also had not decided whether suspensions for first-time offenders who challenge the penalty could be announced before an arbitration decision.

If some stars knew their seasons were about to be cut short, they weren't letting on Wednesday, at least publicly.

"I can't talk about nothing right now. Just wait for the news," Cabrera said.

Peralta said he shouldn't be on the list of players linked to Biogenesis.

"It's wrong," he said. "But whatever happens, I need to fight and try to move on."

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