For the first time since the 1919 Black Sox scandal, Major League Baseball suspended players en mass as a result of connections to the Biogenesis doping scandal.
There were a total of 12 players that accepted a suspension without having a failed drug test. Ryan Braun makes it 13 with having already starting to serve a 65 game suspension.
Ken Rosenthal had the first report this afternoon.
The following list of players have accepted a 50-game ban by Major League Baseball for their connections to Biogenesis: Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz, Tigers shortstop Jhonny Peralta, Phillies reliever Antonio Bastardo, Mets outfielder Jordany Valdespin, Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera, free-agent pitcher Jordan Norberto, Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli, Mariners catcher Jesus Montero, Mets outfielder Cesar Puello, Astros reliever Sergio Escalona, Padres reliever Fautino De Los Santos and Yankees outfielder Fernando Martinez.
The sole hold out is Alex Rodriguez. The official suspension announcement came this afternoon and Rodriguez was handed 211 games. The suspended is a combination of the CBA and the Joint Drug Agreement.
The statement from the Office of the Commissioner:
Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig announced today that third baseman Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees has been suspended without pay for the remainder of the 2013 Championship Season and Postseason and the entire 2014 Championship Season for violations of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program and the Basic Agreement.
Rodriguez’s discipline under the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program is based on his use and possession of numerous forms of prohibited performance-enhancing substances, including Testosterone and human Growth Hormone, over the course of multiple years. Rodriguez’s discipline under the Basic Agreement is for attempting to cover-up his violations of the Program by engaging in a course of conduct intended to obstruct and frustrate the Office of the Commissioner’s investigation. The suspension, which will become effective on Thursday, August 8th, will cover 211 Championship Season games and any 2013 Postseason games in which Rodriguez otherwise would have been eligible to play.
Under the terms of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, Rodriguez’s suspension will be stayed until the completion of his appeal if Rodriguez files a grievance challenging his discipline.
Article 7(A) of the Joint Drug Agreement calls for 50 games, 100 games, and a lifetime ban, in that order, for the first through third drug violations.
The New York Yankees are sitting at 57-53 (.518) this season. They are 9.5 games back of the Boston Red Sox in the AL East. They are 4.5 games back of the Cleveland Indians, which hold the second of the two Wild Card spots. With all of their injuries this season, the Yankees are practically out of the playoff race.
The teams that this hurts the most are the Texas Rangers with the loss of outfielder Cruz. Cruz is ranked in fourth with 27 home runs in all of baseball. The Detroit Tigers hurt with the loss of Peralta. The Tigers, unlike the Rangers, did pick up a plan B in Jose Iglesias prior to the trade deadline in July but don’t think for one minute that Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski is happy that they had to send Avisail García to the Chicago White Sox. Peralta is batting .305 this season.
Today was a sad day for baseball. These players decided to be selfish. It’s not fair to their teammates and the fans.
One final note comes via Hall of Famer Wade Boggs on Twitter:
— Wade Boggs (@ChickenMan3010) August 5, 2013