Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said before Tuesday’s wild-card game that the investigation into accusations of domestic violence against Cubs shortstop Addison Russell is close to completion.
A decision on a possible suspension could be made within weeks, if not days.
“Right now we’re kind of going day by day,” Manfred said. “I think we will have a final decision shortly. That’s the best I can [say].
“The most important thing is to take our time, make sure we have all the facts and sure we try to make a decision at a point in time that it doesn’t affect roster decisions and things like that,” he added.
A decision before the end of the postseason?
“It is conceivable,” said Manfred, who declined to elaborate.
Russell has been on paid administrative leave and prohibited from being at the ballpark with the team since the latest allegations surfaced in a blog post by his ex-wife two weeks ago.
The latest extension on the leave expires Tuesday, with a decision on at least trying to extend the leave one more time coming Wednesday. It becomes a moot point if the Cubs are eliminated.
Regardless, Russell is not expected play again for the Cubs – who shopped him in trade talks last winter as baseball’s investigation lingered with little process.
Major League Baseball began investigating Russell last summer after a friend of ex-wife Melisa Reidy-Russell published a since-deleted instagram post accusing Russell of physically abusing his wife.
Neither his wife nor the friend were willing to cooperate with MLB investigators last season, but that has changed in recent weeks, sources say.
In addition to the blog two weeks ago, Reidy-Russell spoke publicly on the topic this past week for the first time in an interview with ESPN.