While no timetable currently exists on a ruling for the Alex Rodriguez suspension appeal, it is believed that a decision will come soon. Independent arbitrator Frederic Horowitz has long been expected to issue his verdict in the month of January, and with spring training just over a month away, the Yankees need to know what is going on with their highest paid player. According to the New York Daily News, sources have told them that A-Rod is prepared to take the case to federal court if the verdict is not to his liking.
The source believes that A-Rod's lawyers have all the paperwork already drawn up to ask a judge to issue an injunction on the suspension, which would allow the third baseman to take part in spring training and play in the 2014 regular season. In the meantime, his legal team would be working to have any potential suspension overturned in court. "Rodriguez's lawyers will likely claim that the unprecedented suspension violates federal labor law because the arbitration process was unfair and biased against A-Rod."
There has yet to be any clear indication as to which way Horowitz will rule, though both sides seem confident they will win the day. It is believed that if Rodriguez is hit with anything more than a 50-game suspension, his side will protest in court, though a suspension of any kind could spark such a legal battle. If A-Rod gets off completely, which is possible if Horowitz believes a suspension can not be made without an analytical positive test, it's unknown what MLB's reaction would be. Though it should be noted that they fired the last arbitrator that ruled against them when Ryan Braun was under investigation.
Either way, this story is not likely to end any time soon, even if there is a verdict. The Yankees just need to know if they have to pay him or not and if they have to find someone else to play third base. Time is running out for them.
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