- Sportsbooks have set the total of MLB suspension for PEDs during the 2019 regular season at 2.5
- Three players were suspended during for PEDs during 2018, two of them in season
- Two MLB players have already been suspended for positive PED tests this month
Here we are, halfway into March. Already, three MLB players are under suspension following positive tests for PED use.
MLB- Astros P Francis Martes suspended 80-games for testing positive for PEDs while recovering from Tommy John surgery pic.twitter.com/g7U3YcFNy6
— JDF Sports (@JDFSports) March 12, 2019
Books have set the total bar for in-season PED suspensions during the 2019 MLB campaign at 2.5.
Odds on Total Players Suspended for PEDs During 2019 MLB Season
|Total Players Suspended for PEDs During 2019 MLB Season||Odds|
*Odds taken 03/15/19
MLB issued two in-season suspensions for PED use in 2018, and also two suspensions in 2017.
Three Down Already And It’s Only March
Houston Astros pitcher Francis Marte was suspended for 80 games by MLB on March 12. Martes tested positive for the banned performance-enhancing drug Clomiphene.
Astros pitcher Francis Martes hit with an 80-game suspension for PEDs. pic.twitter.com/DwBp9ozvYC
— Yahoo Sports MLB (@MLByahoosports) March 12, 2019
Marte’s suspension may be moot. He’s already expecting to miss most or all of the 2019 campaign after undergoing Tommy John surgery.
Clomiphene is an anti-estrogen substance that is used in fertility treatments. It’s utilized by men to accelerate testosterone production.
— CBS Local Sports (@CBSLocalSports) March 7, 2019
Boston Red Sox pitcher Steven Wright will sit out an 80-game suspension issued March 6 by MLB. Wright’s positive test was for Growth Hormone Releasing Peptide 2.
'Unfortunately, we couldn’t figure out how this particular substance got into my system,' said MLB's only active knuckleballer https://t.co/gbeQaoTk5p
— Post Sports (@PostSports) March 8, 2019
Knuckleballer Wright was previously served a 15-game suspension for violating the MLB’s domestic violence policy. He denies knowingly ingesting the banned substance. The appeal of his suspension failed. As part of his suspension, Wright is ineligible for the 2019 postseason.
Eric Skoglund addressed his 80-game suspension. He said he still does not know what caused it. He grew emotional later when talking about Dayton Moore’s support: pic.twitter.com/XTRqy2v7UE
— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) February 16, 2019
Kansas City Royals lefthander Eric Skoglund has also been issued an 80-game sitdown. In January, he tested positive for Selective Androgen Receptor Modulaters S-22 (Ostarine) and LGD-4033 (Ligandrol).
Ostarine mimics testosterone. Ligandrol is a steroid designed to help in the treatment of osteoporosis. Like Wright, Skoglund claims to have no idea how the banned substances entered his system.
Porcello Speaks Out About PEDs
Red Sox pitcher Rick Porcello, the 2016 AL Cy Young Award winner, is a longtime harsh critic of players who use PEDs. Even though a teammate was suspended, Porcello isn’t changing his tune and notes that Wright owes an explanation to the other Boston players.
— MLB &NHL News Now (@MLB_News247) March 10, 2019
Porcello believes even one positive PED test warrants a lifetime suspension.
In-Season Suspensions In Decline
Testing for PEDs was introduced by MLB in 2004. MLB administers 4,800 random drug tests per season, of which 200 are performed during spring training and 300 during the offseason.
In 2018, there was one suspension during spring training, Minnesota Twins shortstop Jorge Polanco. Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano and Chicago White Sox catcher Wellington Castillo were suspended during the 2018 season.
Is Alex Cora disappointed that one of his players would be suspended for PEDs?
"Yeah, you always think about that. He's not the first one. He's not going to be the last one. I think MLB is doing an outstanding job trying to clean the game."
— Chris Mason (@ByChrisMason) March 6, 2019
Both 2017 MLB suspensions for positive PED tests came during the season. Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Sterling Marte and Astros pitcher David Paulino were the players caught.
By contrast, seven players served suspensions in 2016. Five positive tests results were detected in 2015, two of them from then-New York Mets pitcher Jenrry Mejia.
Jenrry Mejia was banned for life by MLB after three PEDs suspensions in 2015 and 2016.
Now reinstated, he's signed a minor-league deal with the #RedSox.
— Yahoo Sports MLB (@MLByahoosports) January 29, 2019
The number of PED suspensions are declining. It’s held at two now in successive years. Take that as a sign. Play the under.