Oscar Pareja and Hendry Thomas
Garrett Ellwood / Colorado Rapids

MLS VP Rodriguez explains to The Denver Post the reasons Pareja and Thomas were suspended

Last week's suspensions of Colorado Rapids head coach Oscar Pareja and midfielder Hendry Thomas following the match against San Jose left many fans scratching their heads.

Just as the Rapids were leaving for Chicago, the Displinary Committee announced that both Pareja and Thomas would have to miss the game. They made no mention of sanctions to San Jose coach Mark Watson, who had kicked a ball in Thomas's direction - which appeared to start the situation.

So what were the reason's for the suspensions - or lack thereof?

Nick Groke of The Denver Post's Terrace Blog found the answers when he talked to MLS Vice President of Competition, Technical and Game Operations Nelson Rodriguez, who oversees the Disciplinary Committee.

Rodriguez explains to the Terrace Blog that Pareja's suspension was 'automatic' given a new rule instituted at the beginning of the season.

Thomas' sanction was for a different play, not when he was involved in the argument with Watson.

"Thomas leaves both feet and goes airborne into his challenge against Steven Beitashour," Rodriguez said. "When a payer does that, they are clearly not in control of their body."

As for Watson, he and the SJ coaching staff received a warning.

"While it was unpleasant, nothing between the parties involved rose to the level that should result in further punitive sanctions," Rodriguez said.

Check out the full in-depth interview by CLICKING HERE, in which Rodriguez goes in depth on each decision, reveals how the MLS Disciplinary reviews each game and play, the appeals process, the reason for "re-referring" matches after the fact, and how the reviews and sanctions have affected play in Major League Soccer.