Controversial Yankees star Alex Rodriguez has given up, withdrawing his lawsuits against Major League Baseball, commissioner Bud Selig, and the MLB Players Association to overturn his season-long suspension.
Rodriguez was suspended for 211 games last Aug. 5 for violations of baseball’s drug agreement and labor contract. Arbitrator Fredric Horowitz cut the penalty on Jan. 11 to 162 games plus the 2014 postseason.
The notices of dismissal in the lawsuits were filed Friday in federal court in Manhattan. Rodriguez retains the right to refile, but that seems unlikely based on the swift reaction of the former defendants.
“We have been informed that Alex Rodriguez has reached the prudent decision to end all of the litigation related to the Biogenesis matter,” read a statement issued by Major League Baseball. “We believe that Mr. Rodriguez’s actions show his desire to return the focus to the play of our great game on the field and to all of the positive attributes and actions of his fellow Major League Players. We share that desire.”
A statement from the Players Association said: “Alex Rodriguez has done the right thing by withdrawing his lawsuit. His decision to move forward is in everyone’s best interest.”
By withdrawing his lawsuits, Rodriguez ensures that he will not have to testify under oath about his actions. He did not testify during his arbitration hearing but has asserted his innocence when not facing the penalty of perjury.
Legal experts were almost unanimous in their belief that Rodriguez stood little chance of having his suspension overturned. He will lose $25 million in salary this season.
Rodriguez, 38, is signed with the Yankees through 2017. Whether the Yankees — or any other team — will want him in 2015 is uncertain.