Alex Rodriguez, on the disabled list all season, reportedly will receive the longest suspension in the Biogenesis probe. (AP)
Major League Baseball reportedly has told the Players Association that it intends to suspend Alex Rodriguez and eight other players this week for acquiring performance-enhancing drugs from the Biogenesis clinic in Miami.
The New York Daily News was the first to report about Tuesday's meeting between MLB and the union. The Associated Press, citing two sources familiar with the talks, reported that MLB told the union which players it intends to suspend and which ones will receive lengthier penalties, and that attempts to reach agreements with the players to avoid grievance hearings could push back an announcement until Friday.
MLB officials have not commented on or confirmed the reports.
Players linked to the now-shuttered clinic include Rodriguez, a three-time Most Valuable Player who is expected to receive the longest suspension, along with Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz, Tigers shortstop Jhonny Peralta and Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera.
Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli and Mariners catcher Jesus Montero also have been linked. According to the reports, because Blue Jays outfielder Melky Cabrera, A's pitcher Bartolo Colon and Padres catcher Yasmani Grandal will not be disciplined because they already have served suspensions for their violations related to the clinic and its former boss, Anthony Bosch. All three were suspended for positive PED tests last year.
Rodriguez, the Daily News reported, will face stiffer penalties "for lying to MLB investigators or interfering with baseball's year-long Biogenesis investigation."
Some other players linked to the clinic might not be disciplined because investigators could not find enough evidence to warrant penalties.
A-Rod's attorney, David Cornwell, has said that Rodriguez will appeal any discipline. Representatives for the other players implicated will inform MLB officials whether they will challenge their punishments, as well.
Should Rodriguez appeal a suspension, presumably to protect his contract with the Yankees, the Daily News says Commissioner Bud Selig is prepared to invoke his right to suspend a player to protect the integrity of the game, thereby bypassing the Joint Drug Agreement.
Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun, the 2011 National League MVP, reached an agreement last week to accept a season-ending suspension, which will amount to 65 games. Braun tested positive for elevated testosterone in October 2011, but a 50-game suspension was overturned by an arbitrator who ruled Braun's urine sample was handled improperly