Yankees’ Rodriguez Calls MLB Appeals Process ‘House of Horrors’

Alex Rodriguez waited less than 24 hours after the final out of the Major League Baseball season to launch a new round of criticism of Commissioner Bud Selig, saying he’s gone through a “house of horrors” as he appeals his 211-game drug suspension, according to the Associated Press.

The New York Yankees third baseman yesterday again questioned the integrity of baseball’s investigators, whose evidence contributed to the longest drug ban in MLB history. Last month, Rodriguez sued MLB and Selig for attempting to destroy his reputation and career in what he called a “witch hunt.”

“It is sad that Commissioner Selig once again is turning a blind eye, knowing that crimes are being committed under his regime,” Rodriguez, 38, said in yesterday’s statement, according to the AP. “To be sure, this fight is necessary to protect me, but it also serves the interests of the next 18-year-old coming into the league, to be sure he doesn’t step into the house of horrors that I am being forced to walk through.”

Ron Berkowitz, a spokesman for Rodriguez, did not immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment.

MLB Chief Operating Officer Rob Manfred said that Rodriguez’s comments were “another example of this player trying to avoid taking responsibility for his poor choices.”

“Given the disappointing acts that Mr. Rodriguez has repeatedly made throughout his career, his expressed concern for young people rings very hollow,” Manfred said in a statement. “Mr. Rodriguez’s use of PEDs was longer and more pervasive than any other player, and when this process is complete, the facts will prove that it is Mr. Rodriguez and his representatives who have engaged in ongoing, gross misconduct.”

Rodriguez in August was suspended for violating the joint drug agreement between baseball and its players union. Selig said when he announced the discipline that Rodriguez used testosterone and human growth hormone for “multiple years,” and tried to “obstruct and frustrate” baseball’s investigation.

As Rodriguez appealed the suspension, he was allowed to play out the sixth season of his 10-year, $275 million contract, the largest in baseball. The 14-time All-Star has acknowledged taking performance-enhancing drugs as a member of the Texas Rangers from 2001 to 2003, and denied any use after that.

Arbitrator Fredric Horowitz has heard eight days of hearings, according to the AP. The appeal will resume Nov. 18.

-- Editor: Rob Gloster

To contact the reporters on this story: Eben Novy-Williams in New York at enovywilliam@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net

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