NEW YORK -- The support for Alex Rodriguez -- at least outside Major League Baseball's Park Avenue offices -- continues to grow.
Monday morning, there were 10 supporters standing behind a barricade on the street. By Tuesday, there were 70. Wednesday morning, about 150 A-Rod supporters were on Park Avenue, chanting “Alex! Alex!”
Rodriguez arrived for his third day of appeals at 9:32 a.m. The Yankees third baseman, facing a 211-game suspension, greeted his supporters and signed autographs before heading inside three minutes later. He did not talk to reporters.
Hispanics Across America president Fernando Mateo returned to lead the charge after allegedly getting hot coffee thrown at him during an incident Tuesday morning.
Mateo, who said he went to the hospital as a result, sported a neck brace and said he's suffering from muscle spasms. His attorney, Sanford Rubenstein, said Mateo has filed a complaint at the appropriate precinct against a woman who is believed to work for MLB security, and that he is fully cooperating with authorities. An investigation is ongoing and it is unknown if charges will be filed.
A video of Mateo being pushed by two members of MLB security was shown. Mateo said their actions were unnecessary and they should go to anger management classes.
Mateo said he wants to support A-Rod against the "hypocrites" in MLB and the Yankees, saying baseball has turned a blind eye toward youth steroid usage in Latin America, where he said kids are dying every day as a result of their quest to reach the majors. He also wants Latinos to get drug tested before they try out for the big leagues.
Mateo questioned the integrity of the Yankees and president Randy Levine for trying to get out of the remaining money on A-Rod's contract. He wants A-Rod to be punished like a first-time user if he is found guilty of PED usage.