A source told Outside the Lines that Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez will be suspended by Major League Baseball on Monday. It is expected that Rodriguez will be suspended through the 2014 season. Rodriguez just had his 38th birthday, so if he is to return after his suspension, he would be 40 years old when the 2015 season ends.
An important detail:
Rodriguez has already stated that he plans to appeal any suspension.
Speaking to the media after last night’s rehab game with the Trenton Thunder, Rodriguez said he felt he could play another five years. He currently has 647 career home runs to his name, 13 shy of tying Willie Mays in fourth place on the all-time list. Assuming relatively good health, Rodriguez likely would have easily moved atop Mays in 2014.
Outside the Lines also learned that up to 12 additional players will receive 50-game suspensions without appeal.
Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.
That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.
Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.