Yesterday, six minor leaguers were suspended for being in violation of Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. Each received 50-game suspensions which were to begin immediately. All of the players suspended were pitchers with 5 out of the 6 being from the Dominican Summer League. Those players were:
- Pitcher Cody Adams of the Milwaukee Brewers organization (Single-A Wisconsin of the Midwest League) has been suspended after testing positive for an Amphetamine.
- Pitcher Billis Andujar of the Detroit Tigers organization (Dominican Summer League) has been suspended after testing positive for metabolites of Stanozolol.
- Pitcher Jose Encarnacion of the Tigers organization (Dominican Summer League) has been suspended after testing positive for metabolites of Stanozolol.
- Pitcher Carlos Rosario of the Chicago White Sox organization (Dominican Summer League) has been suspended after testing positive for Boldenone.
- Pitcher Aristedes Santos of the Kansas City Royals organization (Dominican Summer League) has been suspended after testing positive for Boldenone.
- Pitcher Jorge Serra of the Toronto Blue Jays organization (Dominican Summer League) has been suspended after testing positive for metabolites of Stanozolol.
The six players suspended come in the wake of five players suspended on Thursday – all DSL players.
All told, drug suspensions across the minors comes to 34, nearly five-times as many as last season accounting for 1,800 games served.
At the current pace, drug suspensions in the minors will surpass the 2005 high water mark of 87. That year was the first year that baseball released information publicly on player PED use. Of the 87 that year, 38 were suspended on April 4. The positive results were announced after 925 tests of players on the 12 major league teams that hold spring training in Arizona and included one offseason result. Thirty-seven players tested positive for the first time and received an unpaid, 15-game suspension, and one player, David Castillo, a catcher with the Oakland A's, tested positive for the third time and was given an unpaid suspension of 60 games.
With the sharp increase in drug suspensions at the minor league level are due to suspensions in the Dominican and Venezuelan Summer Leagues. Results from those leagues started becoming regularly reported as of July 25 of last season. From that date to Dec 22 of 2008, was 59. If using last year’s rate as a measuring stick, minor league suspensions this year would total 93.
Four players have suspended this year as part of Major League Baseball’s drug policy, all for 50 games:
Sergio Mitre: 1/6
J.C. Romero: 1/6
Kelvin Pichardo: 3/23
Manny Ramirez: 5/7
Based upon a 2003 “Survey Test”, 104 MLB players tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. Those positives surpassed a 5% threshold collectively bargained between MLB and the MLB Players Association that then set in place mandatory drug testing in 2004. No suspensions were dolled out as part of the testing in 2003.
See the complete history of all MLB and MiLB drug suspensions
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He is contributor to Baseball Prospectus, and is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided).
Don't forget to register and log in on The Biz of Baseball site to get updates via your in-box, and see information only logged in members can see.
Follow Maury Brown and the Business of Sports Network on Twitter