Rodriguez plans to meet with Yanks ahead of spring training

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NEW YORK (AP) — Alex Rodriguez plans to meet with New York Yankees' officials before reporting to spring training.

Having served a one-season suspension for violations of baseball's drug agreement and labor contract, Rodriguez is due to start workouts at the team's spring training complex on Feb. 26. His relationship with some team officials was strained in 2013 as he tried to avoid a suspension.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman, speaking to reporters before the Connecticut Sports Foundation dinner Friday in Uncasville, said the planned meeting was discussed a day earlier when he and assistant general manager Jean Afterman spoke with Jim Sharp, a lawyer for Rodriguez. The intended meeting was first reported by the Boston Globe.

"Alex considers everything with the Yankees to be family business, and family business stays within the family," spokesman Ron Berkowitz said in an email.

Rodriguez first sounded out the Yankees about a possible meeting earlier in the offseason, but New York held off then.

Rodriguez sued Yankees team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad and New York-Presbyterian Hospital in October 2013, accusing them of mishandling his medical care during the 2012 AL playoffs, then withdrew the case last June.

A-Rod turns 40 in July and has not played a full season since 2007 because of leg injuries, operations on both hips and the suspension.

He was banned for 211 games in August 2013 by then-baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, and the penalty was cut to the 2014 season by an arbitrator. After suing in federal court in an attempt to overturn the discipline, Rodriguez dropped that action and accepted the penalty.

New York plans on shifting the three-time AL MVP from third base to designated hitter. Rodriguez is fifth on the career list with 654 homers.

New York owes him $61 million in the final three seasons of his 10-year contract, and may dispute five $6 million payments it could owe Rodriguez for historic achievements, part of a marketing deal negotiated at the time of his players' contract.

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