NEW YORK, Jan. 11 (UPI) -- Alex Rodriguez was suspended Saturday for the entire 2014 season over his connection to performance-enhancing drugs, the New York Yankees said.
Arbiter Fred Horowitz ruled in Rodriguez's appeal of his earlier 211-game suspension that the controversial slugger would sit out all 162 regular-season games this year as well as the post-season, MLB.com said in a brief item posted on the team's Web site.
Rodriguez was caught up in the investigation into the Biogenisis doping scandal, but has maintained he did nothing wrong and has vowed to fight his lengthy suspension.
"The number of games sadly comes as no surprise, as the deck has been stacked against me from day one," Rodriguez said in a written statement. "This is one man's decision, that was not put before a fair and impartial jury, does not involve me having failed a single drug test, is at odds with the facts and is inconsistent with the terms of the Joint Drug Agreement and the Basic Agreement."
The New York Times said Rodriguez would lose the $25 million he was due to receive in 2014. His contract, however remains in effect through 2017 and would pay him $61 million.
Rodriguez could appeal Saturday's suspension in U.S. federal court, Sporting News said. That, however, would likely lead to legal costs in the millions of dollars.
The consensus among labor-law experts was that it was unlikely a court would step in to block a ruling made by an arbiter, The Times said.