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Saturday
Jan112014

Arbitrator Rules to Reduce A-Rod Suspension to 162 Games

Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- An independent arbitrator ruled to reduce the suspension of New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez to 162 games on Saturday, keeping him from competing during the 2014 Major League Baseball season.

Rodriguez was suspended in August 2013 for 211 games, which covered the end of the 2013 season, the 2013 playoffs and the 2014 season. A-Rod played the final 49 games of the 2013 season while his appeal was underway. While the total number of games Rodriguez will be suspended for was dropped, the suspension ends at the end of the 2014 season, just as the original 211 game ban would have.

In a statement released by his publicist, Rodriguez said that "the number of games sadly comes as no surprise, as the deck has been stacked against me from day one."

The Yankees' third baseman continues to deny using performance enhancing substances while with the Yankees, accusing MLB of using "this injustice" as a step towards eliminating guaranteed contracts in collective bargaining talks coming in 2016.

Rodriguez further stated his intent to take his appeal to federal court, citing what he calls a "lack of credible evidence put forth by MLB."

"I will continue to work hard to get back on the field and help the Yankees achieve the ultimate goal of winning another championship," Rodriguez said on Saturday.

Twelve other MLB players received and accepted 50 game suspensions in 2013 after being tied to Biogenesis, a now-defunct South Florida clinic accused of supplying the players with banned substances.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio