Alex Rodriguez left a grievance hearing at the Major League Baseball office on Wednesday in a huff, after an arbitration officer ruled that commissioner Bud Selig did not have to testify for the player’s attorney.
Rodriguez called his hearing “an abusive process” after storming out of the meeting. The latest bizarre twist in a saga that could end with him facing a 211-game suspension.
According to reports, the third baseman slammed his hand on the table and cursed at MLB’s chief operating officer before storming out of the room.
And he wasn’t finished.
A few hours after the hearing, A-Rod took to the radio to castigate Selig and proclaim his innocence in the scandal revoking around Biogenesis. Rodriquez denied publicly for the first time, albeit not under oath, that he took the performing-enhancing drugs MLB says he took in what has been described as the most egregious doping case in baseball history.
“Today I lost my mind,” Rodriguez said. “I banged a table, kicked a briefcase and slammed out of the room.”
He went on to attack the 79-year-old Selig, who lives in Milwaukee and whose office is there.
“I know you don’t like New York, but you’ve got to come face me,” Rodriguez said of the commissioner. “This is my legacy. I’m part of history. You tell me why I should serve one inning. ‘Cause you’re retiring next year? That’s not fair.”
“I know you don’t like New York, but you’ve got to come face me,” Rodriguez said of the commissioner.
MLB spokesman Pat Courtney told reporters that MLB has the right under the collective bargaining agreement to select the person it wants to use as a witness to explain the penalty the league has settled on in a doping case.
Rodriguez, 38, stands to lose as much as $32 million in salary if his suspension is upheld. He was the only player among 13 suspended by MLB in the Biogenesis scandal to appeal his suspension. The appeal enabled him to play the final two months of the season for the Yankees.
It was unclear whether Rodriguez would testify on his own behalf during the arbitration process. Wednesday’s development would seem to rule out that possibility.