Yankees GM: We want A-Rod back

New York Yankees Alex Rodriguez reacts during an at-bat against the Toronto Blue Jays September 17,...

New York Yankees Alex Rodriguez reacts during an at-bat against the Toronto Blue Jays September 17, 2013. (REUTERS/Mark Blinch)

The Sports Xchange

, Last Updated: 3:40 PM ET

Despite reports that the New York Yankees want to rid themselves of third baseman Alex Rodriguez and his enormous salary, general manager Brian Cashman told ESPN radio Sunday that the team wants him back and not suspended.

Rodriguez, who is still owed $86 million, faces a 211-game suspension stemming from Major League Baseball's investigation of former South Florida anti-aging clinic Biogenesis.

Rodriguez was one of 14 players suspended for their involvement in performance-enhancing drugs distributed by Biogenesis. Rodriguez is in hearings appealing his ban.

Cashman said that Rodriguez is very difficult to replace, even though they are trying to get below the luxury tax threshold of $189 million.

"If it comes down to, would we want the player we signed to be playing that position without any problems? Absolutely, no question about that," Cashman said. "I think if people think there's some sort of benefit by losing that talent, I mean, you can't replace it. It's not like, all right, well, Alex is gone. If he winds up getting suspended and it's upheld, how do you replace that? It's not easy.

"It's not like, all right, we'll take that money and go in this direction. I think ... our fan base saw when we lost significant players at various positions, it was not easy to plug holes because the talent just doesn't exist."

Rodriguez had a batting line of .244/.348/.423 with seven home runs and 19 RBIs in 44 games this year. As a whole, Yankees third basemen had a batting line of .231/.293/.430 with 12 homers and 52 RBIs for the season.


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