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Today in A-Rod: Tabloids report he wants to retire, get paid and avoid PED punishment

Mike Oz
Big League Stew

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(USA Today)

Hey, remember when A-Rod was just some injured guy rehabbing somewhere and we weren't talking about him every day? Thems ain't the days no more. A-Rod drama is back.

In the current saga we've already seen A-Rod being called names after joining Twitter and being told to "shut up the [expletive] up" by his GM. Now we've reached the conspiracy theories. Woot! Go get your tinfoil hats.

Both the New York Post and New York Daily News published stories Thursday saying A-Rod's tweets about being cleared to play are a ruse. His real endgame? Retiring, getting all the money owed to him by the Yankees and not facing MLB suspension in the Biogenesis case. Both stories cite an unnamed source, so keep that in mind.

From the Daily News:

Rodriguez and his advisers are so concerned that Major League Baseball’s drug posse is quickly closing in on him that they have racheted up the timetable for him to return to game action.

Once he’s back playing in rehab games, the sources say, he could then claim he is physically unable to perform because of the serious hip injury he is recovering from, “retire” from the game, and still collect the full amount of his salary — $114 million over the next five years.

The Post said about the same, but its source says A-Rod isn't game-ready:

“He is not ready to play in games,’’ a person with knowledge of the conversation said. “He is worried about his health.’’

Moving beyond the New York tabloids, ESPN New York also published an interesting story that hinged on an unnamed source. This one conflicts the others, and instead says A-Rod thinks the Yankees are trying to purposely slow his recovery.

According to the source, Rodriguez thinks the Yankees are deliberately slowing his return to their active roster in the hope they can have him declared medically unfit to play this season, enabling them to recoup 80 percent of his $28 million salary through insurance.

"Alex thinks there's something really off about this situation," the source said. "Here we have a doctor declaring him fit to play. You think they would be happy about that."

Again, take all this unnamed-source talk with a grain of salt. But you can take this much to the bank: The best reality show in baseball is back, baby!

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