NEW YORK (AP) — Alex Rodriguez has issued a handwritten apology “for the mistakes that led to my suspension” but has turned down New York’s offer to use Yankee Stadium for a news conference and has failed to detail any specifics about his use of performance-enhancing drugs.
The five-paragraph statement issued Tuesday, three days before the team opens spring training, was addressed “to the fans.”
Rodriguez says “I regret that my actions made the situation worse than it needed to be” and “I’m ready to put this chapter behind me and play some ball.”
The 39-year-old, a three-time AL MVP, was suspended last season for violations of baseball’s drug agreement and labor contract. An arbitrator found “clear and convincing evidence” Rodriguez used three banned substances and twice tried to obstruct the baseball’s drug investigation.
MLB transcribed the whole letter as the following:
To the Fans,
I take full responsibility for the mistakes that led to my suspension for the 2014 season. I regret that my actions made the situation worse than it needed to be. To Major League Baseball, the Yankees, the Steinbrenner family, the Players Association and you, the fans, I can only say I’m sorry.
I accept the fact that many of you will not believe my apology or anything that I say at this point. I understand why and that’s on me. It was gracious of the Yankees to offer me the use of Yankee Stadium for this apology, but I decided that next time I am in Yankee Stadium, I should be in pinstripes doing my job.
I served the longest suspension in the history of the league for PED use. The Commissioner has said the matter is over. The Players Association has said the same. The Yankees have said the next step is to play baseball.
I’m ready to put this chapter behind me and play some ball.
This game has been my single biggest passion since I was a teenager. When I go to Spring Training, I will do everything I can to be the best player and teammate possible, earn a spot on the Yankees and help us win.