Starling Marte suspended 80 games for PED use
Starling Marte has been suspended 80 games by Major League Baseball for violating the league’s drug policy, the Pirates announced Tuesday. Jon Heyman originally reported the suspension, which comes in response to a failed Nandrolone test for the Bucco center fielder. Marte will lose $2.47 million in salary during the suspension.
Pirates President Frank Coonelly released the following statement in response to the punishment:
“The Pittsburgh Pirates fully support MLB’s Joint Drug Agreement, including the very tough penalties for violations of its prohibitions. We are disappointed that Starling put himselg, his teammates and the organization in this position. We will continue to fight for the division title with the men who are here and will look forward to getting Starling back after the All-Star Break.”
The news is yet another setback for the Bucs, who lost Jung Ho Kang to visa issues after a third DUI arrest in South Korea. The Pirates have not yet made a roster move, but will certainly need to since they took just three outfielders north on their Opening Day roster.
.@MLB announced today Starling Marte has been suspended 80-games for violating the league’s Joint Drug Agreement.
— Pirates (@Pirates) April 18, 2017
Starling Marte released the following statement after the MLB’s punishment was made public:
“I have been informed that I have tested positive in one of the tests that are regularly done in my job. In this very difficult moment I apologize to my family, the Pittsburgh Pirates, my teammates, my fans, and baseball in general. Neglect and lack of knowledge have led me to this mistake with the high price to pay of being away from the field that I enjoy and love so much. With much embarrassment and helplessness, I ask for forgiveness for unintentionally disrespecting so many people who have trusted in my work and have supported me so much. I promise to learn the lesson that this ordeal has left me. God bless you.”
Per Ken Rosenthal, Marte will be ineligible for any postseason games should the Pirates make it there.