Over the last month, it's been a battle in court between Major League Baseball and New York Yankees third basemen Alex Rodriguez; as the league is trying to uphold a 211-game suspension it handed out to A-Rod during the summer for his alleged involvement in purchasing and using of performance enhancing drugs.
Rodriguez was one of thirteen player suspended on August 5 as part of the now defunct Miami Biogenesis clinic in which Dr. Anthony Bosch distributed and prescribed PED's to major league players and only decided to cooperate because Major League Baseball threatened a lawsuit against Bosch if he did not cooperate in their investigation to eliminate the banned substances from the sport.
According to different reports which were reported by Mike Francesa of WFAN on Thursday in his Mike's On Radio Show, baseball testified in the arbitration hearings that they paid Bosch and Biogenesis associates $125,000 in cash for evidence that would implicate Rodriguez as far as him taking PED's from 2010-2012, but that in itself has come under light and could be a major problem for baseball because not only did they pay for evidence, the way they paid for the evidence sounds like some sort of shady drug deal in the back alley of New York City or Miami that only got discovered now.
With baseball buying evidence; they are allowed to obtain the evidence and if they paid for it, that is at their discretion, but considering they paid $125,000 for the evidence, they have to file paperwork through the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) at least 15 days after the payment is delivered, which Rob Manfred, the current Chief Operating Officer of MLB, testified that baseball did no such thing. Here's the question to ask; why would baseball, which is a multi-billion dollar business and has a ton of funds to obtain any kind of evidence they need, pay people for things in cash? To a lot of the public, it sounds like baseball never wanted that payment to be found out; which again, sounds a lot like a shady drug deal in the alley.
The other thing that really makes baseball look bad is where that payment went to; going to Bosch and his associates, because as it turns out, Bosch's PED's have been sold to minors; something that Major League Baseball apparently ignored when they proceeded with their payment of $125,000 to the people of Biogenesis to obtain evidence on A-Rod.
So, it's alright if they pay drug dealers, because that's really what Bosch is in this case if he gave PED's to kids and minors, to try and cripple A-Rod's reputation and damage his career, but at the same time, they are funding those same drug dealers to continue their criminal activity, especially if they supplied illegal drugs to kids. Baseball looked the other way on a much larger issue just so they could get what they wanted; which was to take out Rodriguez from the sport and would do whatever it took to get the job done. Can you imagine how that looks in the public's eye, as well as the federal arbitrator overseeing the case; Frederic Horowitz?
It's getting to be quite clear that Major League Baseball was playing dirty in this case and may have done some illegal things in order to obtain evidence against A-Rod, which is if the case, then the case on A-Rod needs to be thrown out and the suspension handed down to him back in August needs to be overturned. Baseball was supposed to be the "almighty good guys" trying to provide a clean and fair game for its players and fans, but at the same time, they were hardly being clean and fair when they tried to eradicate one of their own by obtaining evidence illegally from a criminal.
People will still try to say A-Rod cheated and should be punished, and if he did, then he should be punished; but not like this. If he failed a drug test that is under the current Joint Drug Agreement of baseball's Collective Bargaining Agreement, then he should be given the proper punishment that players like Nelson Cruz, Jhonny Peralta and Francisco Cervelli were given in August. To treat A-Rod like he's Public Enemy Number 1 and to try and tarnish whatever reputation he has left by obtaining things illegally in no way makes baseball's case a strong one; if anything, it weakens it and makes them out to be guys looking for revenge.
If baseball is dirty in this, which again, looks like they are, then the 211-game ban they tried to force down A-Rod's throat in August should be overturned completely as a message to baseball that they can not simply make up the rules as they go and there is a proper process as far as to how to go about trying to find out if a player cheated the sport or not.
The way baseball has gone about it is not the right way, and if lucky, some of their top people will be lucky if there isn't a criminal investigation brought about against them. For a sport trying to be squeaky clean, they're being exposed as to being anything but.
As much as people want to slam Rodriguez for his actions and alleged involvement in taking or not taking PED's, baseball deserves to be slammed even worse for their underhanded and corrupt actions in trying to persecute him and the way they went about it. And that is why after all of this, A-Rod's 211 game ban should be wiped off the board this winter.
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