Report: Alex Rodriguez, MLB to talk

Alex Rodriguez will meet with Major League Baseball investigators in the next few days -- at about the time he returns to the New York Yankees from the disabled list -- to discuss his alleged participation in high-stakes poker games, according to the New York Daily News.

Rodriguez might not be aware that a meeting is imminent. A source close to the third baseman said the meeting will take place in the next few weeks.

Whenever the sides meet, Rodriguez almost surely will not face a suspension for playing in the games, according to multiple reports. A source told the Daily News that the league just wants to tell him "to stop getting in these crazy situations."

A report in Star magazine tied Rodriguez to a 2009 game in which cocaine allegedly was used and a fight broke out over unpaid winnings. Poker pro Dan Bilzerian, a source for the Star story, told the Daily News that Rodriguez was not at that game.

Other sources said Rodriguez played in similar high-stakes games, some with actors Tobey Maguire, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon.

Rodriguez's publicist, Richard Rubenstein, issued a statement last week saying the original Star story "contains numerous factual inaccuracies. Alex looks forward to cooperating with Major League Baseball's investigation."

A source cited in Tuesday's Daily News report reiterated that there is "no chance" Rodriguez will be suspended, and questioned whether the poker games were even illegal, because it has not been reported that the home games included a cut for the house.

"Everybody plays cards on team planes and in clubhouses," the source told the newspaper. "This is no different."

Meanwhile, Rodriguez was upbeat after running the bases for the first time, a key step in his rehab program after right knee surgery.

The Yankees third baseman ran from first to second and first to third four times each during his workout on Tuesday in Tampa, Fla. Base running is usually the final step before an injured position player starts in minor league games.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi has said that Rodriguez could return as soon as Monday against the Royals. He's days away from a minor league assignment.

"He's close," Girardi said on Tuesday. "He's been running. He ran the bases today, did (batting practice). He's getting pretty close to probably going in a game. There's been talk of it. It might be on Friday, it might be on Saturday. We'll just see where he's at."

The session Tuesday was moved from the Yankees' minor league complex to their spring training site at George Steinbrenner Field for the second straight day because of rain.

Rodriguez hit off a tee and did a soft-toss session in an indoor cage. A break in the weather allowed the ground crew to take the tarp off the field so Rodriguez could run and field grounders.

Information from ESPNNewYork.com's Wallace Matthews and Ian Begley and ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney was used in this report.