Performance enhancing drugs snagged another victim in MLB.
Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Starling Marte has been suspended for 80 games. The suspension starts immediately and runs well into July.
The 28-year-old Marte tested positive for a drug called Nandrolone after coming off his best season ever. Marte earned a Gold Glove and batted .311 with nine home runs last year with that performance earning him an All-Star nod.
At the time of the suspension, Marte was hitting .241 with two home runs and seven RBIs this season.
Marte is in his 6th season with the Pirates who, after a slow 6-7 start, cannot afford to lose their All-Star outfielder. Marte’s steady glove is expected to be replaced by Andrew McCutchen who last season owned the infamous title of worst fielding center fielder in MLB.
Marte released a statement through his player’s union saying:
“I apologize to my family, the Pittsburgh Pirates, my teammates, my fans, and baseball in general.”
BTW, in case you were wondering how this suspension is without pay and affects the postseason for the Pirates as well. MLB added a rule a few years ago stating suspended players cannot play in the postseason of any year they are suspended, even if that suspension ends prior to the start of postseason. And that will be the case with Marte.