While it initially looked as though the New York Yankees would keep the entire bonus owed to designated hitter Alex Rodriguez for tying Willie Mays for fourth on the all-time home run list, the two sides compromised and resolved the dispute.
MLB Communications provided a statement from the league and the MLB Players Association, which stated Rodriguez and the Yankees "have amicably resolved their dispute regarding Rodriguez's entitlement to bonus monies under the provision of his player contract covering historical statistical accomplishments."
Rodriguez and the Yankees also donated a total of $3.5 million to charities as part of the agreement.
ESPN.com's Andrew Marchand reported in January that the Yankees would fight against paying any of A-Rod's home run milestone bonuses because he was suspended for the entire 2014 season due to the use of performance-enhancing drugs.
After the 39-year-old slugger pulled even with Mays by mashing his 660th career homer on May 1, Yankees managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner was noncommittal about the bonus situation, per Roger Rubin of the New York Daily News.
"Look, I will say that, as with every other contract, if there's any contractual obligations on our end, we're going to meet them," Steinbrenner said. "It's no different than any other contract.
"We'll see. As you can suspect, I don't want to get into it too much."
John Miceli of Elite Daily pointed out that the move is a smart one from Rodriguez:
A-Rod, who also registered his 3,000th career hit this season, is enjoying a fantastic year statistically. He entered Thursday batting .280 with 15 home runs and 45 RBI, and those numbers have helped keep the Bronx Bombers close behind the Baltimore Orioles for first place in the AL East.
Rodriguez has also been a model citizen with a humble attitude in 2015, as evidenced by this tweet following his 3,000th hit:
In addition to his on-field performance, that off-field behavior likely played a big role in the Yankees' willingness to cut a deal.
While the maligned superstar can't undo the mistakes he has already made, he has gone a long way toward redeeming himself to some degree in the eyes of the fans and the Yankees organization.
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