Marlins star second baseman Dee Gordon has been suspended for 80 games after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs, according to an announcement from Major League Baseball. Gordon tested positive for Testosterone and Clostebol.
Gordon's suspension is the second notable ban in recent days, as Blue Jays slugger Chris Colabello was suspended for 80 games after a similar positive test. Gordon is the latest star player suspended by the league for steroid use, joining Ervin Santana (2015), Nelson Cruz (2013), Jhonny Peralta (2013), Alex Rodriguez (2013), Ryan Braun (2013), Manny Ramirez (2009) and Rafael Palmeiro (2005).
Gordon, 28, is a 2-time All-Star who won the National League batting title last season after posting a .333/.359/.418 line with four home runs in 145 games in his first season as a Marlin. He was rewarded with a 5-year, $50 million extension this offseason, and has appeared in 20 games for Miami so far.
In Gordon's absence, Miami will likely utilize a combination of Martin Prado, Derek Dietrich and Miguel Rojas at second base alongside shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria. Gordon's absence will be a crushing blow to the Marlins, who have had trouble keeping their young core of Gordon, Giancarlo Stanton and Jose Fernandez on the field at the same time.
In a statement released Friday by the players union, Gordon was quoted saying he "did not [take PEDs] knowingly" but that he was notified "that test results showed [he] ingested something that contained prohibited substances." Gordon later admitted he "made a mistake" and will "accept the consequences."
This resembles the aforementioned Colabello's statement in that both players are seemingly unaware of how PEDs entered their systems. Neither player has pointed the blame elsewhere as of yet, and both will seemingly serve their suspension time with a relative amount of peacefulness.
While other players around the league may share some mixed feelings, Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander avoided any ambiguity and took to his personal Twitter account to shame PED users:
This PED shit is killing me. If u test positive u need to not play. You shouldn't be allowed to effect games while appealing.— Justin Verlander (@JustinVerlander) April 29, 2016
Voiding the appellate process would be nonsensical though, and against the player association's interests. While Verlander's sentiment might be well-placed, the unforeseen consequences of foregoing a player's ability to appeal would be catastrophic.