NEW YORK -- Baseball players and management hope to reach a new drug agreement this week that would increase initial pen
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NEW YORK -- Baseball players and management hope to reach a new drug agreement this week that would increase initial penalties for muscle-building steroids and allow a decrease of suspensions for some positive tests caused by unintentional use, people familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press. For future suspensions, the deal also would eliminate the loophole allowing Alex Rodriguez to earn almost $3 million during his season-long ban, the people said. They spoke on condition of anonymity in recent days because talks are ongoing. The sides hope to reach an agreement by Sunday, when the Los Angeles Dodgers open the U.S. portion of the major league schedule at the San Diego Padres. While the lengths have not been finalized, a person involved with the talks said Wednesday the most likely penalties would be about 80 games for an initial testing violation and a season-long ban for a second. "It will be a significant deterrent because players will know theyre not going to just easily walk back into a lineup," Travis Tygart, chief executive officer of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, said in a telephone interview. "It probably is the best policy in professional sports." For use of a limited group of substances, the sides were discussing giving the arbitration panel that hears appeals grievances the authority to reduce suspensions by as much as 50 per cent if the player proves the positive test was caused by unintentional use, the person said. "What were all here for it to rid sports of the intentional cheats, those who are intending to defraud both the fans and their fellow teammates, the integrity of competition," Tygart said. "You want to have provisions in place that allow for whether theres an inadvertent or a truly non-intentional situation which may arise." Since the 2006 season, the Major League Baseballs drug agreement has called for a 50-game suspension for a first positive steroids test, a 100-game ban for a second and a lifetime penalty for a third. Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig called for tougher penalties last March, and then-union head Michael Weiner said players would consider them for 2014. Weiner died in November and was succeeded by former All-Star Tony Clark, who has led the negotiations. Major League Baseballs investigation of the Biogenesis of America anti-aging clinic led to 14 suspensions last summer, including a 65-game penalty for former NL MVP Ryan Braun of Milwaukee and a 211-game ban for Rodriguez, which was reduced to 162 games in January by an arbitrator. The section covering violations not related to positive tests, which was used by Selig in the Biogenesis case, will be clarified but still will allow discipline for "just cause." Many players have advocated stiffer penalties as a deterrent. Arizona pitcher Brad Ziegler spoke out after Jhonny Peralta, who served a 50-game suspension, agreed in November to a $53 million, four-year contract with St. Louis. "We thought 50 games would be a deterrent. Obviously its not. So we are working on it again," he tweeted then. "It pays to cheat... Thanks, owners, for encouraging PED use." Some players said suspensions should lead to larger monetary losses. San Diego Padres outfielder Will Venable maintained last summer "somehow having to forfeit or void your contract that youre under is something that needs to be the main focus of the penalties." But for the majority of players, that would go too far. "Id venture to guess that even though there are concerns on a number of levels, that we will never end up in a world where player contracts are voided as a result," Clark told the AP during a January interview. Addressing positives caused by inadvertent use was a factor in the talks. Philadelphia infielder Freddy Galvis was suspended for 50 games in June 2012 for a Clostebol Metabolite, which he later claimed was contained in a foot cream he used. Reliever Guillermo Mota, then with San Francisco, was suspended for 100 games in May 2012 after taking a cough syrup with Clenbuterol. The new deal also will state that a player receives none of his salary during a season-long suspension. The current deal said a player loses as many days pay as games he is suspended. Since players are paid over a 183-day season this year, arbitrator Fredric Horowitz ruled Rodriguez was entitled to 21-183rds of his $25 million salary, or $2,868,852. "Thats fantastic," Tygart said. "You hit them in the pocketbook, and thats really where the cheaters are most deterred from attempting to steal money from the other players." Saku Koivu Jersey . -- Edwin Encarnacion hit a three-run homer, Colby Rasmus drove in two runs and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Detroit Tigers 9-4 on Saturday. Guy Lapointe Jersey . The Goldeyes (10-7) lost 4-1 to the Saltdogs (8-9) Sunday afternoon before 5,834 sizzling fans at Shaw Park. The loss drops Winnipegs record to 3-4 during this past weeks seven-game homestand. http://www.canadienssale.com/authentic- ... ns-jersey/. The time off didnt slow them down. Tyler Zeller scored a season-high 18 points and grabbed a career-best 15 rebounds, Kyrie Irving added 14 points and the Cavaliers pushed their winning streak to five games Tuesday night with a 114-85 victory over the skidding Philadelphia 76ers. Guy Lafleur Jersey .com) - Devon Johnson ran for a school record 272 yards with four touchdowns and No. Jean Beliveau Jersey . -- DeMarcus Cousins had 29 points, nine rebounds and six steals to lead the Sacramento Kings to their third straight preseason win, a 107-90 victory over the Phoenix Suns on Thursday night.MALMO, SWEDEN – Griffin Reinhart doesnt have fond memories of how his 2013 World Junior Hockey Championship ended. "It was one of the worst feelings Ive had in hockey for sure," the Edmonton Oil Kings defenceman said. Being forced to sit and watch the first three Canadian games of this years tournament has been almost as painful. "Its definitely hard on the heart," Reinhart said on Monday night moments after Canada beat Slovakia 5-3 to set up a first-place showdown with the United States on Tuesday. The Slovaks had led 3-2 in the third period. Reinhart is one of only three Canadian players back at the World Juniors looking to avenge last years devastating fourth-place finish. But the fourth-overall pick in the 2012 NHL Draft (New York Islanders) has yet to play, because of a four-game suspension picked up for a high-stick on American Vince Trocheck in last years semifinal loss. He missed the bronze medal loss to the Russians, which was the first game of the ban. Deciding to bring Reinhart to Malmo was one of the trickiest decisions Hockey Canadas brain trust faced leading into the event. But they decided, ultimately, that Reinhart brought too much to the table to leave at home. And they hope hell now help boost a team struggling to find its way. "Huge for us," head coach Brent Sutter said when asked about Reinharts return. "I mean, when you have a player like that, thats big, strong, smart, moves the puck, we obviously miss him on our back end. Its an area where we need to continue to improve in this tournament as we go along. "We also have to understand he hasnt played for a bit here, but, that bbeing said, he has to come in and be ready to go and take over some key minutes for us, which we need him to do.dddddddddddd" Reinhart, who hasnt played since the last pre-tournament game on Dec. 23, insists he should have little to no rust. "Its only been a week, eight days or so, since I played last and its like that in the WHL where you have a week off so its nothing new and Ill be ready for tomorrow," said Reinhart, who will join younger brother Sam in the line-up becoming the third sibling tandem to ever play for Canada in the same World Juniors. The other two were Dougie and Freddie Hamilton in 2012 and Randy and Mark Moller in 1982. "Im just going to try and play a calm game back there. The defence has done a good job so far and Im just going to try and fit in with them." After waiting and waiting to get back in, Reinhart objects to the notion that hes facing added pressure. "Ive played at this level before," he said. "I think Im going to be okay. Ill try and bring my experience that way. Im going to have to take the first couple shifts and get my way back into it, but I feel Im in good enough shape now, Ive been skating this past week and Ill be ready to jump back into it." And Reinhart believes theres a certain symmetry in returning against the team he last faced in the World Juniors. "Im really anxious. Its always hard to watch, especially losing in a shootout [to the Czechs], but Im really looking forward to this day tomorrow. Its been almost a year now since I played my last World Junior game so its fitting that its coming against the same team I played last." 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