Alex Rodriguez drops lawsuits

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NEW YORK -- Suspended New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez abandoned his fight against Major League Baseball on Friday, dropping his lawsuit for tortious interference in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

Rodriguez also withdrew lawsuits against commissioner Bud Selig and the Major League Baseball Players Association, putting an end to his battle to overturn an unprecedented 211-game suspension in connection with baseball's Biogenesis investigation that was reduced last month to 162 games plus the 2014 playoffs by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz.

Rodriguez's attorney Joseph Tacopina confirmed to ESPNNewYork.com that a notice of voluntary dismissal was filed in the cases Friday afternoon. No explanation was given and no further details were provided.

"The statements that were issued say everything that needs to be said. We have no further comments on this matter," Tacopina, one of Rodriguez's nine attorneys, wrote in an email to The Associated Press.

Rodriguez was in Miami on Friday and made no public remarks.

Sources told ESPNNewYork.com in recent days that Rodriguez had been considering dropping the lawsuits for several reasons, not the least of which was the anticipated $10 million it would cost him in legal fees to continue his fight to play baseball in 2014. Rodriguez is already losing $25 million in salary during his suspension.

Also, sources told ESPNNewYork.com that Rodriguez was seeking to reconcile with baseball in hopes of continuing to work in the industry once his playing days are over. His contract with the Yankees runs through 2017 and he has told confidantes he has every intention of returning to the field in 2015.

According to sources familiar with the proceedings, Rodriguez had in recent days made contact with Major League Baseball COO Rob Manfred, who spearheaded baseball's Biogenesis investigation that resulted in the suspensions of 13 players, in the hopes of repairing relations with the sport.

"It was a question of either becoming Pete Rose or Ryan Braun,'' said the source, referring to Rodriguez's fear that he would be ostracized from the game the way Rose, baseball's all-time hits leader, has been since it was revealed he gambled on baseball while a manager.

Braun, the 2011 National League MVP, accepted a 65-game suspension for his involvement with Biogenesis and is expected to resume his career with the Milwaukee Brewers.

According to sources, Rodriguez hopes to pursue a career in broadcasting or even partial team ownership after his retirement and feared a protracted legal fight might cause him to be, in the words of a source, "blackballed" by baseball.

In addition, the Supreme Court has established narrow grounds for overturning arbitrators' decisions, and legal experts said Rodriguez had virtually no chance of succeeding in his attempt to have Horowitz's decision vacated.

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