After reading court documents filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, it’s hard to determine Alex Rodriguez’s end game from his suit against Major League Baseball, the Office of the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, and the Major League Baseball Players Association. Rodriguez’s legal team says it wants his 162-game suspension for the 2014 season overturned. That seems an unlikely goal.

After reading court documents filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, it’s hard to determine Alex Rodriguez’s end game from his suit against Major League Baseball, the Office of the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, and the Major League Baseball Players Association. Rodriguez’s legal team says it wants his 162-game suspension for the 2014 season overturned. That seems an unlikely goal.

Courts generally, and the U.S. Supreme Court specifically, do not like to become involved in arbitration decisions for which an employer and an employees union collectively bargained, which is the process Rodriguez availed himself to, and Rodriguez, Major League Baseball, and the Major League Baseball Players Association agreed was the proper venue for the dispute.

Keep these things in mind regarding Arbitration: Arbitration is considered an alternative to litigation. It is not conducted in a court of law and Rules of Evidence do not necessarily apply. The parties involved in the dispute agree to the Arbitrators. Awards are generally considered binding, and are generally not published. The Rodriguez award was published because it became part of the public record when his legal team filed suit.

Now Rodriguez’s lawsuit seems instead to be an attempt to punish the Major League Baseball Players Association for not defending him enough and Major League Baseball for its prosecution of him. In reading Rodriguez’s complaint, his legal team is trying to show that the arbitration panel was partial to Major League Baseball; there was a disregard for, in this case, principles of evidence; the entire process was defective and the decision reached by the panel could not be reached according to the Collective Bargaining Agreement. These are going to be difficult items to prove.

Rodriguez’s legal team has to overcome a long history of Unions and employers using arbitration to settle disputes. In this case management had a problem with Rodriguez’s conduct – specifically his purported use of performance enhancing drugs. MLB decided to suspend its employee for his alleged conduct. Rodriguez availed himself of the arbitration process agreed to under MLB’s labor agreement with the MLB Players Association, specifically Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program

Section 2 of the Drug Treatment Program spells out what the prohibited substances are, and Section 7 outlines various forms of discipline available to MLB.

Alex Rodriguez was suspended by the commissioner under Section 7.G.2, which states A Player may be subject to disciplinary action for just cause by the Commissioner for any Player violation of Section 2 not referenced in Section 7.A through 7.F above.

Section 8.A gives the jurisdiction to review any determination that a player violated the program to the Arbitration Panel.

After several days of testimony, that arbitration panel headed by Frederic Horowitz concluded in a 34-page report made public on Monday when Rodriguez’s legal team filed its lawsuit, “Based on the entire record from the arbitration, MLB has demonstrated with clear and convincing evidence there is just cause to suspend Rodriguez for the 2014 season and 2014 postseason for having violated the (joint drug agreement) by the use and/or possession of testosterone, IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor), and hGH (human growth hormone) over the course of three years, and for the two attempts to obstruct MLB’s investigation.”

Much like a court of law, the Arbitration Panel had to decide who’s story was more credible, and in this case the panel voted with Major League Baseball based upon the evidence presented. Unless Rodriguez is able to prove the arbitration was fatally flawed, it appears he will sit out the 2014 championship season.