ARLINGTON, Texas -- It is a question we started asking as soon as the Ryan Braun news broke, and one we will continue asking until it is finally -- inevitably -- answered.
Is today the day baseball's hammer comes down on Alex Rodriguez?
You know it's coming. I know it's coming. A-Rod knows it's coming.
The only questions remaining are when will it come down, and how hard?
Braun and A-Rod were entries 1 and 1A in Bud Selig's hunt to make some big-name examples of baseball's remaining steroid cheats. Now that 1 has been bagged, it has been assumed that 1A will not be far behind.
But two days have passed, and the dubious honor of being the second domino to fall went not to Alex Rodriguez, but to a Tampa Bay Rays farmhand named Mark Thomas.
To call that a weak second act would be an understatement.
Still, you know another bombshell is coming. When?
A source with ties to the case told me on Monday that the delay in announcing A-Rod's suspension was because the player and his phalanx of attorneys were working to cut a deal with MLB, as Braun did.
The reality is, A-Rod is likely going down, the same way Braun did. Maybe MLB is milking this for dramatic effect, the way they parcel out the Cy Young, MVP and Manager of the Year awards over the course of a week after the end of the season.
But the likelihood is, some final details need to be worked out on both sides before we finally get to learn the fate of Rodriguez.
In the meantime, it makes for an excellent parlor game: When does Alex Rodriguez finally get suspended, and for how long?
I'll give you my guess: Before the end of this week, and for 100 games. And I think, unlike Braun, he will most definitely exhaust the appeals process to the fullest extent that his considerable bankroll can bear.
Now, give me yours: Name the day of Alex Rodriguez's suspension, the term of his sentence, and his reaction -- acceptance, or appeal? Let us know in the comments section, or via my Twitter account, @ESPNNYYankees.
UP NOW: The Rapid Reaction from last night's come-from-behind 5-4 win over the Texas Rangers, as well as a blog on Brent Lillibridge's big night, and five things you need to know off the game. Also, Derek Jeter worked out in preparation for his return to action.
ON DECK: Game 3 of this four-game series, Andy Pettitte (7-7, 4.47) vs. RHP Matt Garza (6-1, 3.17 with the Chicago Cubs), who was acquired on Monday in a trade, first pitch at 8:05 p.m. ET. Clubhouse opens at 4:35 p.m. and I'll be at the door when it opens, with the lineups and pregame news shortly thereafter, so stick your head in every so often. And as always, we thank you for your patronage.