The verdict is finally in for Alex Rodriguez. The Yankees third baseman’s 211-game suspension has been reduced by an arbitrator to 162 games for his involvement in Major League Baseball’s Biogenesis scandal.
A-Rod will miss the entire 2014 season for the Yankees and, per arbitrator Fredric Horowitz‘s ruling, the third baseman will not be able to play in any postseason games, should the Yankees qualify, according to ESPN. The ruling brings to a close a months-long process in which Rodriguez challenged MLB’s initial suspension.
The drama is far from over, though, as Rodriguez said he will contest Saturday’s decision in federal court. A-Rod’s spokesperson released a statement before the decision was even officially announced, calling the suspension “inconsistent” and based on “false and wholly unreliable testimony.”
“The number of games sadly comes as no surprise, as the deck has been stacked against me from day one,” the statement said. “This is one man’s decision, that was not put before a fair and impartial jury, does not involve me having failed a single drug test, is at odds with the facts and is inconsistent with the terms of the Joint Drug Agreement and the Basic Agreement, and relies on testimony and documents that would never have been allowed in any court in the United States because they are false and wholly unreliable.”
Rodriguez also maintained in the statement that he has not used any performance-enhancing substances during his time with the Yankees.
With Rodriguez officially off the table for 2014, the Yankees can open up the possibility of signing another third baseman as Rodriguez’s salary would be wiped off the books during the suspension. He is slated to earn $25 million in 2013 and $61 million total from 2015-17.