The messy public battle between Alex Rodriguez and the New York Yankees just got even uglier; as Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman released a statement accusing A-Rod of violating the MLB Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) when he obtained a second medical opinion after the Yankees diagnosed him with a Grade 1 quad strain.
“I heard via a text message this afternoon from Alex Rodriguez that he had retained a doctor to review his medical situation,” Cashman said in the statement, provided by Fox Sports. “In media reports, we have since learned that the doctor in question has acknowledged that he did not examine Mr. Rodriguez and that he was not retained to do a comprehensive medical examination of Mr. Rodriguez. Contrary to the Basic Agreement, Mr. Rodriguez did not notify us at any time that he was seeking a second opinion from any doctor with regard to his quad strain.”
According to ESPN, Article XIII, Paragraph D of the CBA states “a player shall inform the club in writing” before obtaining a second medical opinion for injuries.
“As early as Friday, July 12, when I suggested to Alex that we move his rehab from Tampa to Triple-A Scranton (at Buffalo), Alex complained for the first time of “tightness” in his quad and therefore refused to consent to the transfer of his assignment,” Cashman continued. “Again, last Sunday, Alex advised that he had stiffness in his quad and should not play on Sunday or Monday. We sent Alex to NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital for an MRI which evidenced a Grade 1 strain.
“Our goal is to return (Rodriguez) to the lineup as soon as he is medically capable of doing so,” Cashman said.
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As previously reported, Dr. Michael Gross, Chief of Orthopedic Surgery at Hackensack University Medical Center, said that A-Rod’s MRI did not indicate a quad strain. "I spent about 20 minutes going over it,” Gross told radio host Mike Francesa. “I look particularly at his quadriceps muscle. To be perfectly honest, I don’t see any sort of injury there.'”
Meanwhile, A-Rod himself has issued a statement provided by spokesman Ron Berkowitz. "I think the Yanks and I crossed signals," Rodriguez said. "I don't want any more mix ups. I'm excited and ready to play and help this team win a championship. I feel great and I'm ready and want to be in the lineup Friday night. Enough doctors, let's play."
Aside from the injuries, Rodriguez’s future in Major League Baseball is anything but certain. His name has been linked to the Biogenesis scandal which already claimed Milwaukee Brewers slugger Ryan Braun, who was handed a 65-game suspension for his involvement. Speculation continues to mount that A-Rod will receive an even harsher 100-game punishment, or a lifetime ban from MLB.