Source says Yankees thinking of not making $6M payment to A-Rod

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Source says Yankees thinking of not making $6M payment to A-Rod
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 21: Alex Rodriguez is seen strolling on Madison Avenue on January 21, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Alessio Botticelli/GC Images)
The Yankees are looking to void milestone bonuses in Alex Rodriguez's contract. According to the New York Daily News, when Rodriguez signed his deal with the club in 2007, it contained bonuses as Rodriguez tied or passed the top home run hitters.
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 21: Alex Rodriguez is seen strolling on Madison Avenue on January 21, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Alessio Botticelli/GC Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 19: Alex Rodriguez on the sidelines before a game between the Dallas Cowboys and the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium on October 19, 2014 in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys defeated the Giants 31-21. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
TUSCALOOSA, AL - OCTOBER 18: Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees stands on the field prior to the game between the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Texas A&M Aggies at Bryant-Denny Stadium on October 18, 2014 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez answers questions from the media at a news conference following a Class AA baseball game with the Trenton Thunder against the Reading Phillies, Friday, Aug. 2, 2013, in Trenton, N.J. (AP Photo/Tom Mihalek)
New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez arrives at the offices of Major League Baseball to appeal his 211-game suspension, in New York, Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013. Rodrig(AP Photo/David Karp)
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 02: American baseball star Alex Rodriguez is seen outside MLB Offices on October 2, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 25: Alex Rodriguez #13 of the New York Yankees reacts after striking out in the fifth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium on September 25, 2013 in the Bronx borough of New York City. Rays defeated the Yankees 8-3. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
A fan holds a sign directed at New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez before a baseball game between the Baltimore Orioles and the New York Yankees, Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez can't field a first inning double by Tampa Bay Rays' Evan Longoria off pitcher CC Sabathia during a baseball game Saturday, Aug. 24, 2013, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez looks back while standing on first base after being walked during a Class AA baseball game with the Trenton Thunder against the Reading Phillies, Friday, Aug. 2, 2013, in Trenton, N.J. (AP Photo/Tom Mihalek)
New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez autographs a baseball for a fan before the start of a Class AA baseball game with the Trenton Thunder against the Reading Phillies, Friday, Aug. 2, 2013, in Trenton, N.J. (AP Photo/Tom Mihalek)
Alex Rodriguez and Jay Z Celebrity Poker Tournament - Inside  Raise 738,695.00 Presented by Fox Woods and Mercedes Benz Alex Rodriguez (Photo by Johnny Nunez/WireImage)
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NEW YORK (AP) -- The New York Yankees are thinking about not making a $6 million payment to Alex Rodriguez if he hits six home runs and ties Willie Mays at 660 for fourth place on the career list.

Rodriguez signed a $275 million, 10-year contract with the team in December 2007 and a separate marketing agreement that called for $6 million payments for up to five milestone accomplishments designated by the Yankees. Each payment is due within 15 days of designation and is in exchange for rights such as using Rodriguez's name and image in selling licensed goods.

At the time of the marketing agreement, those accomplishments were contemplated to be tying the home run totals of Mays, Babe Ruth (714), Hank Aaron (755) and Barry Bonds (762), and breaking Bonds' major league record.

Rodriguez returns to the team next month after a season-long drug suspension and has three seasons and $61 million in guaranteed money remaining in his contract.

New York's thought process on the $6 million payment, first reported by the Daily News, was described to The Associated Press on Monday by a person familiar with the deal who spoke on condition of anonymity because no public statements were authorized. The Yankees are thinking of letting any accomplishment pass without declaring it a milestone.

A failure to declare a milestone and make a payment likely would trigger a grievance on Rodriguez's behalf by the Major League Baseball Players Association. Barring a settlement, the case would be heard by an arbitrator.

Rodriguez's spokesman, Ron Berkowitz, declined comment.

A-Rod met last week with Rob Manfred, who headed the investigation of the Biogenesis of the America clinic that led to the player's suspension for violation of baseball's drug agreement and labor contract.

"Occasionally when players have an issue, they have asked me for advice, come to see me, wanted to talk to me about something," Manfred said Monday. "I don't put a particular significance on this meeting. It was one of those things. A player wanted to come in. We had a brief meeting."

Rodriguez, a three-time AL MVP, turns 40 in July, and the Yankees have said they plan to shift him from third base to designated hitter.

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