In a move that will be awkward for both Major League Baseball and the New York Yankees, Alex Rodriguez will participate in spring training despite being suspended for the entire season according to Wallace Matthews of ESPNNewYork.com.
Barring a reversal in court, A-Rod will miss the entire 2014 season for violating MLB’s performance-enhancing drug policy. After an arbitrator reduced A-Rod’s suspension to 162 games, a spokesperson for Rodriguez told Matthews that the 3-time MVP does plan to attend spring training next month.
Suspensions in MLB only apply to the regular season and there have been other instances in which a player was facing an impending suspension at the start of the season and still participated in spring training. However, in those cases, the players were eventually expected to play in the regular season.
According to the report, if MLB tries to bar A-Rod from spring training, his representatives will argue that a final decision on the 2014 season is still up in the air as the case goes to court and A-Rod deserves the opportunity to prepare for the season just like every other player.
Of course, A-Rod could show up and the Yankees could let him work out with the team and not use him in games. But if that happens, it will look more and more like the Yankees were a driving force behind the year-long suspension.
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