New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez has been suspended for the entire 2014 season for his alleged use of prohibited performance-enhancing substances.
The Major Leagues decided to reduce A-Rod's punishment from a 211-game suspension to 162 games, plus any post-season games, meaning that the 38-year-old Rodriguez will not be allowed to take the field for even one game this season.
Baseball Commission arbitrator Frederic Horowitz was the official who sifted through the massive amount of evidence presented in the case and made the decision to suspend one of the Yankees' key players.
Because of the sanction, Rodriguez will lose about $25 million in salary, but his contract states that he will receive $61 million if he plays for the 2015 through 2017 seasons.
In response to the decision, A-Rod issued a statement saying: "The number of games sadly comes as no surprise, as the deck has been stacked against me from day one. This is one man's decision, that was not put before a fair and impartial jury, (and) does not involve me having failed a single drug test."
He added that he will "take this fight to federal court."
Over the past two weeks, Horowitz held closed-door sessions at the Major League Baseball, or MLB, offices in New York where he heard extensive testimony on the Rodriguez case.
This is the longest suspension in baseball history, exceeding the 105-game ban imposed on Miguel Tejeda in 2013 for amphetamine use.
A-Rod, who on several occasions has denied he used or possessed any prohibited substances, appealed MLB's initial decision last August to suspend him for 2011 games, calling the ruling "baseless." EFE