Alex Rodriguez is alleged to have taken part in underground poker games, and his high-stakes gambling may cost him a heavy suspension.
Major League Baseball and the Yankees gave Rodriguez a warning six years ago about gambling in underground poker clubs as possible involvement with gamblers might involve betting on baseball games. It will be interesting to see how the commissioner's office comes down on the third baseman with a suspension if he indeed disregarded the warning.
According to Star Magazine, Rodriguez reportedly played in at least two poker games, including one at a Beverly Hills mansion of record executive Cody Leibel, which included well-known actors, and where hundreds of thousands of dollars changed hands among players and cocaine was prevalent.
The tabloid reported Rodriguez played in Texas Hold 'Em games with Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and Tobey Maguire, and then later organized a high-stakes game in Miami, "which ended with thugs threatening players."
Playing poker at homes in California, New York, and Florida is not illegal. Also, there have been no reports that Rodriguez was involved in violence or drugs.
Rodriguez is still on the disabled list after his July 11th knee surgery, and arrived at the Yankees' minor league facility in Tampa on Wednesday night to undergo workouts for the first time. He is expected back later this month, but could be out longer due to a possible suspension.
"We take this very seriously and have been investigating this matter since the initial allegation," MLB said in a statement. "As part of the investigation, the Commissioner's Office will interview Mr. Rodriguez.."