Report: MLB investigating A-Rod for poker game


Via Wally Matthews, MLB is conducting an investigation into Alex Rodriguez‘s alleged participation in an illegal, high-stakes poker game. “We’re talking to people involved in the investigation and we’re taking this very seriously,” said an MLB exec. “Because he had been warned about this before, I would say a possible suspension would be very much in play.” The commissioner’s office will interview Alex as part of the investigation.

I get that MLB is cracking down because they have warned Alex once before about this stuff, though I’m not sure if they’ll actually be able to suspend him. The union and its many lawyers will have his back, and frankly MLB has set a precedent by ignoring all those DUI’s earlier this year. They won’t suspend a player for potentially killing someone by driving drunk, but they’re considering suspending A-Rod for playing cards? Get real. Fine him and move on.

Categories : Asides


  1. Kevin G. says:

    Selig should go back to trying to add more playoff teams and leave A-Rod alone.

  2. bexarama says:

    Can’t read my, can’t read my, no he can’t read my poker face.

  3. bonestock94 says:

    Wow, pro athletes gamble!?

  4. Jerome S. says:

    I agree with the commissioner’s office.

    On that note, what’s with these women showing they’re ankles so freely? What is this, Tamany Hall?

  5. (safe)

    Fun Fact: Mark Walhberg was originally slated to co-star in Ocean’s Eleven, until he backed out and his role was given to Matt Damon.

    He backed out to “star” in Planet of the Apes.


  6. RIP Irabu says:

    Excuse my french, but who the fuck really cares, its his money so why does Selig have to cum in his pants over it?

  7. Reggie C. says:

    Supposedly, actors Matt Damon and Ben Affleck attended that poker game. Just yesterday, video of Damon’s defense of teachers and public bashing of the Tea party made head waves across the intertubes. This smacks of a smear job against Damon. Jmco.

    • OldYanksFan says:

      “According to the baseball executive, MLB has yet to positively determine that Rodriguez took part in the games, which reportedly included actors Tobey Maguire, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon.”

      Yup… ARod hanging out with some pretty serious criminals.

    • JackC says:

      Yeah, I had that thought, too.

    • NYinTX says:

      A smear job against Damon by what you’re assuming to be right-wing media? YGBSM.

      FWIW, the video was produced by Reason, a libertarian publication and foundation, and just showed the overall stupidity by many, including Damon, at the rally. His ignorance about the motivations, salaries, and benefits of teachers is astounding.

      • someone who knows something. says:

        My daughter is an elementary school teacher. She has a Master’s degree and speaks both English and Spanish fluently (no we are not Latino; she is self-taught). She makes $39K per year and pays $650 per month for health care benefits for her and her husband. She spent about $1.5K last year out of pocket (unreimbursed) for classroom supplies, printing, etc. because of cutbacks in the school budget. She also spends about 20 hours per week outside the classroom on preparation work. Oh, yes, that 2 months of summer vacation– it’s great, but 2 weeks of that went to professional development, and other week preparing for and taking certification exams.

        Please tell me all the facts you know about teacher salaries and benefits.

        • JackC says:

          This exponentially.

        • NYinTX says:

          I can’t speak about you’re daughter personally, but here you go.

          Note that the statistics are from the DoE and BLS. You’re daughter may be an outlier in her field but the fact is that teachers, as a whole, are fairly well compensated. This is not an attack on teachers, they have an incredibly difficult job, but to suggest that they are grossly underpaid is not completely true.

          Furthermore, education budgets have grown incredible amounts in the past 30 – 40 years yet teacher’s raises haven’t kept pace. Why is that? Because administration now hogs a larger percentage than it should.

          I’m all in favor of performance pay for teachers and in a sensible world if your daughter was outstanding at her job, she would get paid a much higher salary than those who are just there to collect a check, but entrenched interests won’t necessarily allow that to happen.

          Additionally, a little professional advice. Your daughter is allowed to deduct up to $250 on the front of her Form 1040 for educator expenses. If she itemizes instead of taking the standard deduction, she could also claim the excess over $250 to unreimbursed employee expenses on Schedule A.

        • YanksFan says:

          Depends on where you live. Also depends on how old she is.

          NYC for example, the avg. salary is approx. $44,000 for all residents of all ages. Meanwhile, a NYC teacher is at $50,000 after 5 years & is nearly impossible to lose their job. This on top of them having their summers off for 2 months along w/ all the holidays, spring break, winter break. They work 181 days a year while the avg. person has to work 230.

          Did I also mention that they pay less for their insurance than the avg. person. On yeah, teachers get a much better pension than the avg. person, esp. since the average person does not get one.

          Also, w/ summers off they can get a job in summer camp. If they have a kid or more the kids get to go for free. Which is $5,000/kid for day camp.

      • ben says:

        Yeah, and he made the Reason reporter look like a twit. They posted it because they knew they’d get a ton of attention and plenty of fools wouldn’t get the point and subscribe to their crappy site.

        • NYinTX says:

          She was terrible, but she’s an intern so you get what you pay for. The rest of the Reason staff is top-notch and continually expose bad actors (not actors in the Hollywood sense), private and public, left and right.

          That being said, I’m so glad that you took the time to so clearly expand your point with meaningful analysis.

  8. MattG says:

    Let’s get this out of the way: the idea is that if a professional athlete gambles, he threatens the integrity of his sport because gambling debt makes you a target for tarnishing sporting events.

    With what he’s worth, A-Rod couldn’t lose that kind of money.

    But still, it’s incredibly bad judgment for a professional athlete to be involved in high-stakes gambling. Do you realize what sort of people could get their hooks into Rodriguez? Drunk driving is an infinitely more heinous offense, but of these two, gambling has the potential to harm baseball more.

    • Jerome S. says:

      Nah. I think that the stigma attached to gambling is archaic and pointless; it’s a sin in the eyes of the lord, not an affront to society. I mean, A-Rod can’t throw away money in a poker game, but every day my friends dad walks down to Wall Street and gambles other people’s money? Please.

    • Yeah, I’d be much more worried about Joe Jackson and Happy Felch associating with gamblers back the post WWI days (when everyone was making peanuts and had to work odd jobs during the offseason) than Alex Rodriguez or other modern athletes with their half-a-million dollar minimum guaranteed salaries.

      Charles Barkley and Michael Jordan probably lost the GDP of all of sub-saharan Africa while gambling on EVERYTHING during their playing days; it didn’t spill over to actual basketball games in any way I’m aware of.

      • MattG says:

        Right. So long as he’s not gambling with Meyer Wolfsheim, this is a non-story.

        But I am not at all surprised by MLB’s reaction. The perception of impropriety is serious shit.

        • JackC says:

          I think the thrust is though, that he’s gambled with a pretty unsavory guy whose money was not really his to lose. A Ponzi scheme artist, apparently. Toby Maguire is being sued for 300,00 K in his winnings from this guy by the victims. So if in fact MLB had warned him to stay away from this guy, and in fact he ignored MLB, I think it’s a suspendable offense. It’s also incidentally a real litmus test on character I would simultaneously argue and not care so much about.

          Still, I respect anyone who makes a Meyer Wolfsheim reference. Thank you for that.

            • JackC says:

              Fair enough. I think, unless more info comes to light one way or another, this may fall into the category of something with which reasonable people may differ. Unfortunately for the Yanks, I think there’s little doubt which camp Selig belongs in to (not that this in the least burnishes my side of things).

          • The Fallen Phoenix says:

            I’ve played more than my fair share of poker games against people I don’t like, simply because friends of mine invited them to the table.

            I would imagine the pool for high-stakes poker – the sort A-Rod is alleged to have played – is probably even more shallow than the pool I participated in, say, college.

            Furthermore, A-Rod has always struck me as a pretty cerebral guy, in addition to being incredibly competitive. When you combine that with the amount of money he has (i.e., enough to last him several lifetimes), and it doesn’t strike me at all odd that he might get a particular thrill out of playing high-stakes poker games. And I’d also wager that same thrill probably wouldn’t come from, say, betting on baseball games, which tests an entirely different set of skills than poker does.

  9. Skip says:

    My beef with this crap piece by Wally:

    1. He was in a house game that collected no fees to enter. Not illegal, it’s just a house game like you and I would play, except instead of Benny, Matty and Leonard from down the street, he plays with Ben Affleck, Matt Damon and Leo DiCaprio. Again, unless specifically found to be an illegal poker ring, this is a non-story. Maybe ARod did play those types of things back in 2005, but he was warned and now plays with his buddies. Whatever.

    2. The mention of “cocaine.” This is just an unethical piece of journalism. He’s purposely trying to associate ARod with cocaine without implicitly saying so. I’ve been to places where I am stone cold sober and people around me are smoking joints, drinking whiskey that was smuggled in and fights breaking out. Does that make me a bad person? No, absolutely not. And you know where this was? Yankee Stadium. Dude a couple of rows from me was drinking his Jack Daniels from a pint and got drunk and into a fight. Whatever.

    3. I agree – this is utterly unacceptable for someone to get a DUI and not have any punishment except for a public apology, while ARod is getting investigated for a possible suspension because of drinking beer and having a good time with his buddies.

    4. He did not gamble on baseball, he did not bet on outcomes of games. He bet on poker. Just because he plays poker the person he’s with also might be a gambler and thus might fix games? I don’t see the connection there, just very strawman.

    I’ve been raging at how utterly ridiculous this has been all afternoon. I can’t wait for the actual game to start.

  10. mac1 says:

    They have to do something to punish A-Rod – I’d give him a $5,000 fine but allow him one cut of a deck of cards to go double or nothing.

  11. You’ve gotta be kidding me. I’m actually not someone who tends to get too worked up about this sort of thing, but (as Mike mentioned) considering MLB’s treatment of other off-the-field issues, this is ludicrous speed.

    Perhaps there’s a silver lining here… Maybe this will be the last straw, the thing that really gets it through everyone’s skulls that entirely too much attention is paid to this guy’s personal life. I can’t imagine too many people don’t see this as unnecessary and tedious.

  12. CMP says:

    As long as he comes back and hits some homers, I don’t care if ARod puts on a dress and turns tricks on Hollywood Blvd.

  13. Stevis says:

    pretty unbelievable…why don’t they (MLB) let us know about the other 100 plus players that tested positive the same year as A-Rod,
    or maybe make more of a deal over fatboy in Boston and his alleged steroid use…amazing he gets a free pass (Ortiz)
    I think Alex will walk around with a bulls eye on his back no matter what

    • Preston says:

      The double standard is and always has been that Alex is historically great. Big Papi is a good player maybe he gets some hall votes. Alex could have retired after 2001 and been considered one of the best SS of all time. And by the end of his career he’ll probably have compiled enough numbers that his Yankee career alone would make him one of the best 3B of all time. He’s Barry Bonds all over again. He’s great and people don’t like his personality so they’ll tear him down whenever they’re given the chance.

    • I Voted 4 Kodos says:

      Well, Ortiz is still trying to figure out how he failed the test. He’s hired the same PI’s that OJ hired to find the real killer.

  14. Dino Velvet says:

    They play cards in the locker room every fucking day.

    How is what ARod doing different?

  15. David, Jr. says:

    This is a nice little smear job:

    “According to the baseball executive, MLB has yet to positively determine that Rodriguez took part in the games” – Then why are you writing this crap, Wally?

    “illegal high-stakes poker games” – Not illegal at all, Wally, unless the organizers of the games are taking a cut, rather than the participants merely playing with their own money. Do you even know that, Wally?

  16. Andy says:

    This is such a fucking joke. And I love that people say “he brings it on himself.” That’s bullshit. The media and general public is obsessed with vilifying Alex for reasons I’ll never understand.

  17. nathan says:

    I hate Wally… there is not a single hit piece (abt Yanks) that he will pass up.

    I am totally convinced that ARod is out of his mind and is a moron. His associations, his off and on the field behavior are sometimes unprofessional. I don’t care about him smooching Diaz, running around with Madonna, taking a sunbath shirtless or those shenanigans I am just worried about why an athlete of his stature, talent and earning needs to violate baseball’s unwritten rule. He has been warned already, its his fault if he did commit this. If they suspend him 10 games I totally understand that. That he can hit the ball 400 ft and earn a few wins for Yanks should not cloud what he actually has done here.

  18. Winston Smith says:

    Aren’t there admitted cocaine users on the Texas Rangers that are still playing and are praised as the good guys? A-Rod just went to a poker game. There’s no proof he did anything, he was just there. This is a hit job.

    • Winston Smith says:

      And there was violence at the poker game! Suspendable offense! There’s violence on the field whenever there’s a bench clearing brawl and MLB condones these actions as part of the game.

  19. Mike HC says:

    Classic ARod.

  20. ItsATarp says:

    Why hasn’t banned that Ruth fella yet as well. I swore I saw him in a speak easy during prohibition.

  21. Xstar7 says:

    Everyone say it with me,

    Wallace. Matthews. is. full. of. shit.

  22. Gonzo says:

    Are they going to ban gambling on the team flights now too? WTF is going on here?

  23. Freddy Garcia's 86 mph Heat says:

    What are they going to do next? Ban those NY Lottery commercials?

  24. bobmac says:

    What a joke.If they suspend Arod I’m cancelling my MLB tv package.Money is the only thing they can relate to.

  25. jay h says:

    i think the best part is that matthews got this comes from a gossip site

    • David, Jr. says:

      TMZ. Pretty soon Bud will be combing through the National Enquirer to see if anybody is banging the neighbor’s wife.

  26. Pastadivingarod says:

    new river ave t-shirts

  27. Dino Velvet says:

    How did Josh Hamilton get away with getting shit faced

  28. JobaWockeeZ says:

    Fuck you Bud Selig you good for nothing POS.

  29. rac says:

    They can play during rain delays though. hehehehe

  30. Kiersten says:

    Can we please focus on the real issue here:

    Why is A-Rod playing poker with two high-profile Red Sox Fans???

    • SDM says:

      thats the real story, fine him 100 grand for that blasphemy

      He’s a yankee you don’t fraternize with the enemy even if its Jason Bourne, Spiderman, and Jennifer Lopez’ ex.

    • tom says:

      Plus I thought Arod was a Republican, while Ben/Matt/Leo are hard-core Dems. It’s an odd coupling from many angles.

  31. Jedile says:

    This is all a plot by the Red Sox, cause they know once arod comes back the Yanks’ lineup will be super! They are skerd, so skerd they go kry to their momma, SKERDY KAT RED SAWX FANS. so skerd. fraddy kats! skerd

  32. Rainbow Connection says:

    If anyone should be suspended, it’s John Hamilton for killing that man.

  33. Alex says:

    Ron Washington does cocain and doesn’t get suspended and A-rod might get suspended for this?

  34. Alex says:

    Ron Washington does coke and doesn’t get suspended and A-rod might get suspended for this?

  35. Jamey says:

    Wallace Matthews attended college where cocaine parties took place all the time. I think ESPN should suspend him until this matter is cleared up.

  36. alex says:

    Ron Washington did cocain and doesn’t get suspended and A-Rod might for this? I just don’t get it.

  37. SDM says:

    The MLB

    “Our players are allowed to drink and drive without consequence but don’t you dare play a game of poker with friends”

    Also These men (Arod and his poker pals) make tens of millions of dollars a year playing with a few thousand bucks is not “high stakes” to them any more than me playing for ten dollars

  38. Pat D says:

    I just don’t understand why they have such a hard on for ARod. It’s really getting pathetic, they’re just desperate to bust him for something.

    Why? Because he admitted he used ‘roids? Doesn’t that make him the better person than, say, Ortiz?

  39. alex says:

    sorry for all the same posts, the comments weren’t going through and then went all at once.

  40. JohnnyC says:

    Bud Selig apoproving the sale of the Dodgers to McCourt with almost no cash and all borrowed money was real high stakes gambling.

  41. Kevin says:

    K-Rod beat his ex-girlfriend’s father up right in front of other families including small children and was only suspended two games.
    MIguel Caberra has been arrested for drunk driving, telling a group of patrons he wanted to shoot them and got into a drunken fight with his wife and got no suspensions.
    Yet A-Rod plays a game of cards and he’s being threatned with suspension? Give me a break?!

  42. EndlessMikeJr says:

    With the gambling and the Canadian HGH Doctor maybe the Yankees can find a way to void most of A-Rod contract.

  43. YanksFan says:

    LaGrecca was killing him today & I wanted to tell him to STFU. It was unbelievable. Maybe A-Rod should place himself under house arrest. Go from his house to the stadium and back home. That would be the only way the media will be happy.

    Then again, they may just say he’s avoiding the media & bash him for it.

  44. Midland TX says:

    I tried to think up a centaur/horseracing joke but I gotta go to bed. Feel free to tag in.

  45. Bavarian Yankee says:

    lol. Why does stuff like this NEVER happen to other players? It’s like the MSM just waits until something happens to A-Rod. Manny was tested positive for several times and was that a big deal? No, at least not as big as A-Rod playing cards. Ortiz admitted that he took roids and nobody ever talked about that afterwards.

    btw: MLB is considering a suspension because he played cards? Why does the MLB care about something that has absolutely nothing to do with baseball? Did they suspend K-Rod because he beat his father in law? No, because he’s not A-Rod. Why didn’t they suspend A-Rod for eating popcorn at the Super Bowl? Isn’t that worse than taking roids?

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