Melky Cabrera suspended 50 games

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dodgersfanjeff
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SAN FRANCISCO -- All-Star Game MVP Melky Cabrera was suspended for 50 games without pay Wednesday after the San Francisco Giants outfielder tested positive for testosterone.

Cabrera leads the National League with 159 hits, and is second in batting average behind Pittsburgh's Andrew McCutchen. Cabrera's penalty was the first for a high-profile player since last year's NL MVP, Ryan Braun, had his suspension overturned by an arbitrator last winter.

Major League Baseball said Cabrera tested positive for the banned performance-enhancing substance in violation of the drug agreement between owners and the players' association.

"My positive test was the result of my use of a substance I should not have used," Cabrera said in a statement released by the union. "I accept my suspension under the Joint Drug Program and I will try to move on with my life. I am deeply sorry for my mistake and I apologize to my teammates, to the San Francisco Giants organization and to the fans for letting them down."

Cabrera is batting .346 with 11 home runs and 60 RBIs in his first season with San Francisco.

Flashing bright orange spikes, Cabrera singled and hit a two-run homer last month in the National League's 8-0 All-Star win, which secured homefield advantage for the World Series.

He will miss the final 45 games of the regular season and serve the remainder of the suspension at the start of next season or during the postseason, depending on whether the Giants make the playoffs and how far they advance.

"We were extremely disappointed," the Giants said. "We fully support Major League Baseball's policy and its efforts to eliminate performance enhancing drugs from our game."

If the Giants wanted him to become active in the middle of a playoff series, they would have to play a man short from the start of the series until the suspension ends because rosters can't be altered in mid-series.

It was not immediately known whether Cabrera's positive test occurred before the All-Star Game. The union initially filed a grievance, which would have caused the case to go before an arbitrator, but then dropped it, a person familiar with the process said. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because that detail was not announced.

Cabrera told CSN Bay Area on July 27 that he had been tested for performance-enhancing drugs the previous week, though it's unknown whether the test he referenced resulted in the positive test.

Drug-testing labs check urine for its ratio of testosterone to epitestosterone, which usually is 1 to 1 in adult males. If the lab notices any abnormality, it conducts an isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) test to determine whether the testosterone is exogenous, or came from outside the body.

Cabrera will not be permitted to work out with the Giants at any point during his suspension. Under the terms of Major League Baseball's drug policy, he can work out at the Giants' minor league complex but can't play in any minor league games.

Cabrera became the second Giants player to receive a drug suspension this season. Reliever Guillermo Mota was penalized for 100 games in May, becoming just the third major league player disciplined twice for positive drug tests. Mota is eligible to return Aug. 28, barring rainouts, and began a minor league rehabilitation assignment Tuesday with the Giants' rookie team in Arizona.

Robinson Cano, Cabrera's former teammate on the Yankees, was "100 percent surprised" by the news.

"It's really sad. He's having a great year," Cano said. "But, I'm his friend and I'm gonna be there for him."

There have been four suspensions in the major league drug program this year, with Philadelphia infielder Freddy Galvis and free-agent outfielder Marlon Byrd also suspended 50 games apiece. There have been 70 suspensions under the minor league drug program.

Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez stood behind his former teammate.

"From my experience, I saw where he made a statement; that is always a good first step and sometimes the hardest," said Rodriguez, who admitted in 2009 to having taken performance-enhancing drugs. "I think he has an opportunity, being a young player. With that said, it is also going to be a challenge. I hope that he takes the bull by the horns and does some great things. I'm a believer and a friend. In times like this, I will definitely not turn my back and I'm here to support him."

The 28-year-old Cabrera, who became a marketing phenomenon with nicknames like "Melk Man," "Got Melk?" and "Melky Way," produced a 51-hit month in May. Cabrera batted .429 in May with three homers, five triples, seven doubles and 17 RBIs. He hit safely in 25 of 29 games. The 51 hits matched Randy Winn for most hits in a month since the club came to San Francisco in 1958.

Cabrera also set the San Francisco record for most hits in May, passing Hall of Famer Willie Mays' 49 from 1958.

Cabrera came to the Giants in a trade with Kansas City last November that sent left-hander Jonathan Sanchez to the Royals. Cabrera -- who signed a $6 million, one-year deal to avoid salary arbitration -- batted .305 with 44 doubles, 18 homers and 87 RBIs last season.

He is a big reason San Francisco began play Wednesday tied with the Los Angeles Dodgers atop the NL West.

San Francisco said it wouldn't make a roster move until Thursday's off day before opening a weekend series at San Diego.

http://espn.go.com/los-angeles/mlb/stor ... d-50-games

Lol, I just realized we didn't have a general MLB section. This sort of relates to the Dodgers, since were battling the Giants for the division. Big loss for them too, since he was one of their best hitters this season.


dd88
Site Admin
Posts: 878
votes: 1

Jeff- definitely great news for the Dodgers. Losing a .346 hitting is huge. Melky Cabrera- batting average for the last 6 years:

.273

.249

.274

.255

.305

.346

Hmmmm- I guess the testosterone really helped him. At least he was honorable enough about it and accepted the penalty, not like that snake Ryan Braun.


dodgersfanjeff
Posts: 152
votes: 2

^Wow, looks like it did help him comparing his previous batting averages. Well at least he's gone for the rest of the season, not to mention the Dodgers are in 1st place also.


dd88
Site Admin
Posts: 878
votes: 1

My bad for saying that Melky Cabrerra had any honor- just read that he tried to trick MLB with by creating a bogus website to try and get an alibi. Rolling Eyes


dodgersfanjeff
Posts: 152
votes: 2

^Wow. There goes his honor and honesty for sure. If he would've just gone the Andy Petite route, this story would go away so much sooner, and he would have a much better chance at repairing his public image.


dd88
Site Admin
Posts: 878
votes: 1

^^Yeah the Andy Petite route was a good one. Or maybe instead of the website ruse he should've gone with the Ryan Braun method and try and look for some technicality to get off without any penalty, lol.


dodgersfanjeff
Posts: 152
votes: 2

^Lol, the Ryan Braun story never gets old to me. Next thing you know, he'll be like A-Rod, and say it was his cousin who got it for him, and told him to try it.

Big 3 game series against the Giants, and with Kershaw going for us tonight, we got a great opportunity to tack on another game ahead of the Giants.


dd88
Site Admin
Posts: 878
votes: 1

It's gonna be HUGE- I hope we can get 2 out of 3, but of course another sweep with be awesome. Can't get a sweep unless we get game 1. Go Clayton, go Blue!


dodgersfanjeff
Posts: 152
votes: 2

Lol, yeah if we can sweep them like we did in SF a couple weeks ago, that would be fantastic, as long as we don't get swept again in our following series. We got our Ace going tonight, and it's not like the Giants have an intimidating lineup either. Hoping for another CG shutout from Kershaw, lol.


dd88
Site Admin
Posts: 878
votes: 1

^^Jeff- a tough loss last night. Nobody in the top of the order could get on base- if only one guy could get on base before that Hanley Ramirez home run.... That was a pitchers' duel for sure. Tonight's game could be a slugfest, but we have to get to Tim Lincecum early. If he settles in and become comfortable, he can still be a pretty good pitcher. Hopefully Blanton can stop walking people, and if he's going to give up homers hopefully they'll be solo ones. Go blue!


dodgersfanjeff
Posts: 152
votes: 2

^Dave, yup a very tough loss last night. Hats off to Bumgarner though, who out-dueled Kersh that game. On the bright side, at least Hanley is still hot, lol. Agreed on the idea of us needing to get to Lincecum early. Hopefully the first 3 innings, since Blanton will probably give up his usual 4-6 runs through 5 or 6, lol. Let's hope our boys can get the W regardless, and take the series tomorrow.


dd88
Site Admin
Posts: 878
votes: 1

Jeff- wow it was a sweep alright. I think next time I'm not going to use the S word- what a jinx! That was a tragic series and pretty devastating. Hopefully we can bounce back and pass the Giants. Losing those 3 games in a row really hurt our wild card chances as well.


dodgersfanjeff
Posts: 152
votes: 2

Made the same mistake too Dave. I think seeing the Dodgers sweep the Giants at SF, and also winning 7-10 games on the road trip, had my confidence in the team at a very high level. Hopefully we can feast on the Marlins & Rockies, and the Braves can take the series against the Giants, lol. Too bad we couldn't skip the 1st inning of each game in the series, since that's when it seemed like the Giants would score.


dd88
Site Admin
Posts: 878
votes: 1

^^Yup good point Jeff- our starters were really shaky to begin the games. You never want to give up several run leads and letting quality starters get confidence like that. They know they have a cushion to work with and they throw more freely and are usually more effective.


dodgersfanjeff
Posts: 152
votes: 2

Exactly Dave. Now also with Bills on the DL, I think it's even more important to not waste quality starts from our starters, except for Blanton, since I don't think he has anymore quality starts in him, lol.

However, with the addition of Adrian, I'm hoping that will also give our starters more confidence that they will be getting more run support, and don't have to feel like they can't make a mistake all game.


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