Why Was Alex Rodriguez Suspended?

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Why is Alex Rodriguez suspended? Alex Rodriguez, or A-Rod, is suspended for performance-enhancing drugs—using, possessing, and “engaging in a course of conduct intended to obstruct or frustrate” officials from investigating them, specifically.

Even more specifically, A-Rod is suspended for 211 games—or through the 2014 Major League Baseball season—for his alleged connection to Biogenesis, a now-defunct South Florida anti-aging clinic. The New York Yankees slugger has declined to answer questions regarding whether he took performance-enhancing drugs, as he says there’ll be “a forum to discuss all of that,” according to CNN.com.

The question, “Why is A-Rod suspended?” is perhaps not as interesting as, “Why is A-Rod suspended for so long?” Alex Rodriguez was one of 13 players suspended due to Biogenesis ties, and yet A-Rod received a 211-game suspension, while each of the other players accepted a 50-game suspension without pay. A-Rod appealed his suspension, and it’s for that reason he’s still suiting up in pinstripes every night and taking the field with the Yankees. The rules allow Rodriguez to continue playing while the Major League Baseball Players Association appeals the league’s ruling, which came after A-Rod reportedly tried to make a deal with the commissioner and bargain for an 80- or 100-game suspension and promise to retire with pay following the band.

Why is Alex Rodriguez suspended for 211 games, then, and not 80 or 100? Because baseball officials refused to accept those terms, according to the New York Daily News. A-Rod’s lawyers have denied bargaining with the league in the days before Alex Rodriguez was suspended through the 2014 season, but insiders say MLB shot down the deal because it would have left the Yankees to pay a huge amount of A-Rod’s remaining contract. In 2007, the third baseman signed a 10-year, $275 million deal, and despite all the controversy and public ill will—he’s been getting booed since returning in August 2013 from injury—Rodriguez has 647 home runs, the fifth most in Major League Baseball history.

Why is Alex Rodriguez suspended for longer than all the other players? Maybe because he’s an exemplary player and role model to young kids. A-Rod is suspended because he’s accused of cheating, and former teammate Johnny Damon has said proof A-Rod had used drugs would tarnish his accomplishments.

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