The Oakland Athletics’ Ramon Laureano will not be joining his team in a post-season run this fall. Or for several games at the beginning of the 2022 season. The MLB center fielder received a ban for 80 games for failing a PED test.
The A’s have just over 50 games left as they vie for a chance at October ball. This means Laureano will be out almost 30 games when the ’22 opener arrives.
While the punishment seems harsh, the MLB has increased the number of game suspensions from between 25 and 50 games in 2005 to a standard of 80 games in more recent years.
Interestingly, the performance-enhancing drug, Nandrolone, is a common steroid.
The Atheltics organization responded to the punishment by offering a statement of agreement. In the response, they say they were sorry to learn of Laureano’s positive test, and that they stand with the MLB’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. The team said they respect the decision to suspend Laureano for the 80 games and look forward to welcoming back the ballplayer once he sits out his allotted suspension.
The A’s center fielder will sit out without pay for the rest of this year, and in the return of the MLB next spring.
Ramon Laureano Releases a Statement
The 27-year-old Laureano released a statement detailing his devastation surrounding the positive test.
“I would never knowingly ingest any banned substance and put the game that I’ve loved all my life at risk,” Laureano said. “When I found out that I tested positive for nandrolone, I was shocked. I take great care of my body and have an extremely regimented diet. Based on the minuscule amount that was briefly in my body, I’ve learned that it is likely that it was contamination of something I ingested.”
The star continued:
“…I know I don’t need any of that to perform on the baseball field. All my athletic success has come from my hard work, focus and dedication to the game.”
“I’d like to apologize for the distraction that this might cause my teammate, Billy Beane, David Forst, and the entire Oakland organization, community and fan base.”
A History of MLB Suspensions: How Laureano Falls In
While Laureano’s suspension for six games a year ago was for his involvement in a bench-clearing incident against the Houston Astros, the young player has never made waves with PEDs prior to this year.
However, PED use, or ‘doping,’ is no stranger in the game of baseball. Former Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez previously tested positive and was out for 211 games. Other legends Manny Ramirez, Robinson Cano and Melky Cabrerra have also all sat out of multiple games for suspensions.
The Athletics organization is currently second place in the AL West. They are just behind the Houston Astros as they head into the weekend.