TODAY

TODAY   |  August 05, 2013

Bob Costas: ‘If A-Rod is smart,’ he’ll be ‘conciliatory’

NBC Sports’ Bob Costas discusses the Alex Rodriguez controversy and the possibility that he will be suspended by Major League Baseball today.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> bob costas of nbc sports . good morning to you. it's like watching an accident in slow motion over the last couple of weeks. you know somebody is going to be hurt. you don't know if it's just a. rod, the yankees, major league baseball or all of the above. what's the most likely scenario today?

>> first of all i think baseball made a wise move because they took the distractions off the table. it was widely assumed by all of us that bud would suspend a. rod under the terms of the joint drug agreement and the collective bargaining agreement through the integrity of the game clause. it will close the possibility of an appeal and that would have created sympathy for a. rod because his camp could claim he was treated unfairly and being denied due process . now he takes himself out of it as a distraction. he removes the criticism that this is all about the contract and the yankees recooping as much of the money as possible. he says, look, go ahead and play. we'll try to expedite this and get it in front of an arbitrator as soon as possible and you'll get a fair hearing. it's possible that they could drag it out. that a. rod's side could drag out the preparations long enough that he could play in the 50 or so games in this season and the arbitrator would decide in the off season to uphold the suspension for 2014 . that seems like the most likely outcome.

>> since this term best interest of baseball is being thrown around so much, look at the scenario. a. rod stays on the field and plays during an appeals process but what happens every time he takes the field in every city around the league and what happens when they put microphones in his face after every game. isn't all the talk going to be about steroid scandal and a. rod?

>> there's no question about that but baseball didn't want to open up the possibility of being sued outside their own disciplinary process which includes an arbitrator and proceedings in front of an arbitrator are confidential. let's say a. rod's camp decides to declare all out war and they might have if they had no other ability to appeal and it goes into a court of law, then it gets extremely messy. baseball knows, especially on the road he's going to be booed. it's going to be a circus tonight in chicago but if a. rod is smart about this, his comments are going to be as conciliatory as possible and he'll keep saying we'll let the appeal play itself out. i'll tell my side of the story during the appeal and that will, hopefully, at least from his standpoint take some of the circus atmosphere down a notch.

>> you already answer my question about the response you expect tonight in chicago when he takes the field.

>> a wild booing.

>> when major league baseball announces the suspensions today will they also be asked to reveal some of the evidence against a. rod and other players?

>> they did not in the case of ryan brawn. if the other players do what ryan brawn did which is accept the penalty rather than appealing, baseball will not reveal the evidence, at least not at this time. and they're not required to even if there's an arbitration hearing. even if there is an appeal they're not required to reveal that information. so what they have said is that they have what they believe is a convincing case against a. rod that includes not only his use of performance enhancing drugs but he tried to recruit some other players to biogenesis and for all those reasons his penalty will be more severe than the others expected to get 50 game which is is the remainder of the season at this point.

>> we'll know a lot more by the end of the day . bob, good to see