And last night, just hours after A-Rod and 12 other athletes were suspended for their alleged ties to Biogenesis, a now-closed Florida clinic accused of supplying performance enhancing drugs to athletes, Rodriguez suited up and joined his teammates on the field for a game against the Chicago White Sox.
In a press conference before the game, the baseball star told reporters "the last seven months have been a nightmare," admitting this has been "probably the worst time of my life." Rodriguez said he's "fighting for [his] life" by appealing the 211-game ban, explaining, "I have to defend myself. If I don't defend myself, no one else will."
But fans didn't seem to have much sympathy. The crowd booed as A-Rod stepped up to the plate, and Twitter was ablaze with sports fans calling for him to quit.
That said, Rodriguez is certainly not the first athlete embroiled in controversy. Here are five more all-stars who've been swept up in sports' biggest scandals.
1. Lance Armstrong: After years of vehemently denying using steroids, the cyclist finally came clean about his doping past in January 2013, admitting to Oprah Winfrey he just had a "ruthless desire to win at all costs." Armstrong was stripped of all seven of his Tour de France titles and banned from cycling for life. "I'll spend the rest of my life apologizing and trying to earn back trust from people," Armstrong said.
2. Tonya Harding: Remember when we all became obsessed with competitive figure skating back in 1994? Ms. Harding was part of the reason why. Just before the 1994 U.S. Championships, the athlete's ex-husband and bodyguard hired an attacker to club competitor Nancy Kerrigan in the knee. Harding later admitted to trying to cover up the plot, but was still allowed on the U.S. Olympic team. Kerrigan won a silver medal at the games and Harding skated away in eighth place. She was later banned from the sport for life.
3. Barry Bonds: In 2003, the baseball legend's trainer was charged with supplying steroids to a number of athletes. Bonds testified to a grand jury the same year that he had received a clear substance and a cream from his trainer, who said they were the nutritional supplement flaxseed oil, and a balm for arthritis. In 2006, federal investigators called into question whether the athlete committed perjury during his 2003 grand jury testimony. Bonds refused to testify and was found in contempt of court, and then sent to federal prison. The following year, on Nov. 15, 2007, the grand jury returned an indictment against Bonds, charging him with perjury and obstruction of justice based on evidence from their investigation. Bonds' trial took place in April 2011, and he was ultimately found guilty of the felony charge of obstructing justice. (The judge declared a mistrial on the perjury charges because the jury couldn't reach a unanimous verdict.) Bonds was sentenced to 30 days of house arrest a, two years of probation and community service. Bonds' multiple accomplishments in the sport are now marked with an asterisk to denote the controversy surrounding his name. In January 2013, he was denied entry to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
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4. Tiger Woods: On Nov. 27, 2009, the golfer was involved in a minor car crash outside the Florida home he shared with then-wife Elin Nordegren and their two children. Woods' fidelity was called into question as allegations of multiple mistresses, including Rachel Uchitel and Jaimee Grubbs, came forward. In February 2010, Woods publicly confessed to cheating and apologized for his behavior. He and Nordegren split, and their divorce was finalized on Aug. 23, 2010.
5. Michael Vick: In 2007, the NFL quarterback was hit with felony charges of operating a dog fighting ring. He was sentenced to 23 months in prison for his heavy involvement (particularly financially) in the cruel and abusive activity. Following Vick's release in 2009, he returned to the game, signing a deal with the Philadelphia Eagles. In an attempt to salvage his reputation, he's worked with animal advocacy groups, including the Humane Society, as an ambassador to prevent dog fighting.