Sports Briefs: We'll Take Suspension for a Lifetime, Alex

(Sponsored by 3 Spoons Yogurt)

Chris: In 2002, Alex Rodriguez appeared to me in a box of Post cereal. He was wearing a Texas Rangers uniform (by which I’m referring to the baseball club, as opposed to the law enforcement agency), was made of plastic and stood a little over three inches tall. His head bobbled. In fact, whenever I asked him questions, he always answered by nodding. Since then, I have asked him if he has ever taken steroids, if he has ever cheated on his wife, if Pinocchio is his talisman and if he deserves to be given a lifetime ban from baseball. He has vehemently nodded “yes” to every question thus far.

Ralphie: I think his behavior already deserves a lifetime ban. He makes baseball look bad with all of these scandals.

Brad: I think the Yankees should get rid of him. He isn't doing his job. Even if he is a fan favorite and brings in fans to games, he isn't a good role model the way he is acting. They don't want kids growing up and wanting to be a player who can't follow the rules. And if he keeps breaking the rules, he really isn't a team player anyway. The way he has been acting in public, he doesn't seem to care that he may never play again. He seems to be very self-centered.

Joe: The Yankees should stand firm with the club policy on the violations by A-Rod. If this is a repeat offense, he should be held to a higher penalty. The league may also have a greater say if the violations are serious enough. If his contract language permits, I would cut him loose to avoid the salary payments and marking time by holding his position. At his age, it is time for the Yankees to develop a new player.

Brad: They need to get rid of him and bring in some new players and refresh baseball's image.

Chris: The similarities between Rodriguez and the most recent player given a lifetime ban by Major League Baseball are abundant. One is a 14-time all-star, and the other is a 17-time all-star. (Both have also been caught lying, so those all-star appearances may be skewed.) Both enjoy eating popcorn, though Rodriguez prefers his popcorn handfed by Cameron Diaz. And while hairstyle is something that completely differentiates Rodriguez from Pete Rose, I would briefly consider casting my nonexistent Hall of Fame vote for Rodriguez if he were to grow out his hair and let Rose give him a self-inspired bowl haircut. This, of course, assumes Rodriguez is healthy enough to sit in a barber’s chair.

Brad: Yes and no. It may not have been a bad injury, but they still need to make sure that he doesn't get injured worse.

Joe: A-Rod's injury should not play a part in his penalty assessment for this violation. A-Rod's penalty should be the league policy for repeat offenders for steroids. If he violated labor agreement and did steroids, it is time for him to be banned from MLB.

Ralphie: The Yankees have been more than fair with A-Rod. The Yankees should try to get rid of him because he's doing illegal things, and he deserves to lose his baseball career.

Joe: If A-Rod has obstructed investigations, repeated steroid violation and violated labor agreements, he should be banned from MLB.

Ralphie: He should receive a permanent suspension to set an example for other players.

Brad: I don't agree with allowing players back in after bans. If it was a regular job, you would be done. You wouldn't get a second chance, so why should the rich and famous be any different?

Chris: To my knowledge Alex Rodriguez has never worn a dress. He’s never carried a purse (unless one counts a man-purse). He doesn’t wear much makeup. So I don’t consider him to be a good role model for females. However, seeing as how he has two daughters, he has compensated and been a capable example to young ladies when it comes to highlighting his hair, teaching self-defense techniques (as he exhibited by slapping a baseball out of a fielder’s glove) and making sure he always smells nice.

Brad: I don't know how he is off-camera, so I don't know what kind of role model he is to his kids then. I don't think he demonstrates good sportsmanship to his girls, though. I don't know what he thinks about his actions, so maybe he thinks he is the greatest role model.

Joe: A-Rod is a phenomenal talent. He has had a great career in statistics and winning. This is something for young people to look up to. If A-Rod has repeated previous violations, I believe he has done irreparable harm to his image as a role model. As such, he should move on to the next phase of his life.

Chris: If Rodriguez does get banned from baseball or choose to retire, I feel mystically confident that the voters of New York would elect him a state senator, regardless of whether he was actually on the ballot or not.

Ralphie: Well, I think he's already messed up his chances of being a role model. I guess all he can do now is take his consequences and show his daughters that he is able to do that.

Try on a new pair of Sports Briefs with the Gab Four every Friday. Find out more about Joe, Chris, Brad and Ralphie, and read their solo columns on their individual pages.

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