Major League Baseball is looking into allegations that New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez participated in a high-stakes, illegal poker game.
“We're talking to people involved in the investigation and we're taking this very seriously,” an MLB executive told ESPNNewYork’s Wallace Matthews on condition of anonymity. “Because he had been warned about this before, I would say a possible suspension would be very much in play.”
That warning about playing in underground poker clubs reportedly came in 2005 — from the Yankees and from Commissioner Bud Selig. “We take this very seriously and have been investigating this matter since the initial allegation,” MLB spokesman Pat Courtney told USA Today. “As part of the investigation, the commissioner's office will interview Mr. Rodriguez.”
The first report came from Star magazine earlier this month; RadarOnline carried further details today. Rodriguez allegedly played in at least two games at the Beverly Hills home of a record executive, although MLB has yet to determine that. The games reportedly included actors Tobey Maguire, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon. There are allegations of cocaine use and that “a fight nearly broke out” when one of the players refused to pay after losing “more than a half-million dollars.” Rodriguez reportedly “tried to distance himself from the game” when the violence occurred.
Rodriguez, 36, is presently on the disabled list after having surgery to repair meniscus in his knee.