In 2009, after years of denials, Alex Rodriguez admitted he'd taken banned performance-enhancing drugs and apologized for having done so. In 2013 evidence emerged that he'd again been using PEDs; Rodriguez denied it. Then, in late 2014, he reportedly admitted to federal authorities that the new allegations were also true. Now his second big apology has arrived via a handwritten note to "the fans." We don't have rights to images of the note, but here's the text:
To the fans,
I take full responsibility for the mistakes that led to my suspension for the 2014 season. I regret that my actions made the situation worse than it needed to be. To Major League Baseball, the Yankees, the Steinbrenner family, the Players Association and you, the fans, I can only say I'm sorry.
I accept the fact that many of you will not believe my apology or anything that I say at this point. I understand why and that's on me. It was gracious of the Yankees to offer me the use of Yankee Stadium for this apology but, I decided the next time I am in Yankee Stadium, I should be in pinstripes doing my job.
I served the longest suspension in the history of the league for PED use. The Commissioner has said the matter is over. The Players Association has said the same. The Yankees have said the next step is to play baseball.
I'm ready to put this chapter behind me and play some ball.
This game has been my single biggest passion since I was a teenager. When I go to Spring Training, I will do everything I can to be the best player and teammate possible, earn a spot on the Yankees and help us win.
Rodriguez, who is 39, hit .244 with seven home runs in 2013 before being suspended for all of last season over the PED allegations. He is under contract with the New York Yankees for three more seasons at a cost to the club of $61 million.