New York Yankees player Alex Rodriguez has sued Major League Baseball and its Commissioner Bud Selig, accusing them of improperly gathering evidence to destroy his reputation and career.
Rodriguez, suspended from 211 games by Major League Baseball for doping, claims MLB interfered with his contracts and business relationships.
The lawsuit, filed on Thursday, seeks unspecified damages.
"The entire legal dynamic is very complex, and my legal team is doing what they need in order to vindicate me and pursue all of my rights," Rodriguez said in a statement to USA TODAY. "This matter is entirely separate from the ongoing arbitration. I look forward to the arbitration proceedings continuing, and for the day to come when I can share my story with the public and my supporters."
In August, MLB suspended Rodriguez through the end of the 2014. The Yankee third baseman was one of 13 players suspended for their alleged links with Biogenesis, a Florida clinic accused of supplying players with performance-enhancing drugs.
The lawsuit alleges MLB paid $150,000 for the records from the clinic and the league is paying Biogenesis founder Anthony Bosch $5 million for his cooperation. It even goes as far as to allege investigator Dan Mullin had "an inappropriate sexual relationship with a witness whom he himself interviewed about the Biogenesis matter."
MLB has denied any improper conduct in a statement released Friday morning.
“For the more than four decades that we have had a collective bargaining relationship with the Major League Baseball Players Association, every player and club dispute has gone through the jointly agreed upon grievance process,” the statement reads. “This lawsuit is a clear violation of the confidentiality provisions of our drug program, and it is nothing more than a desperate attempt to circumvent the Collective Bargaining Agreement.
“While we vehemently deny the allegations in the complaint, none of those allegations is relevant to the real issue: whether Mr. Rodriguez violated the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program by using and possessing numerous forms of prohibited performance-enhancing substances, including testosterone and human growth hormone, over the course of multiple years and whether he violated the Basic Agreement by attempting to cover-up his violations of the program by engaging in a course of conduct intended to obstruct and frustrate the Office of the Commissioner's investigation.”
Rodriguez, 38, has denied wrongdoing and appealed the ruling. He played out the remainder of the season while the suspension was under appeal.
A 14-time All Star and three-time MVP, Rodriguez is the only player challenging his penalty. The others accepted offers of 50-game bans, but the player known widely as A-Rod received a stiffer punishment because he was accused of other offenses, including lying to the investigators.