Twins Pitching Rotation takes a Fastball to the Gut


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It would be an understatement to say the Minnesota Twins’ pitching rotation just took a massive blow.

Friday afternoon, starting pitcher Ervin Santana received an 80 game suspension without pay after testing positive for performance enhancing drugs (stanozolol). Santana would have likely been the 2nd man in the Twins’ starting rotation. Ouch.

The Twins released this statement shortly after:

"“We were disappointed to learn of the suspension of Ervin Santana for violating Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program,’’ the Twins said in a statement. “We fully support Major League Baseball’s policy and its efforts to eliminate performance enhancing substances from our game. Per the protocol outlined in the Joint Drug Program, the Minnesota Twins will not comment further on this matter.”"

This incident makes a bad week even worse for the right-hander out of the Dominican Republic. A few days ago, Santana found out he is being sued for allegedly not paying for  over 40,000 dollars worth of jewelry.

Shortly after the Twins gave released their statement, Santana followed suit. What sticks out to me is that he claims to not know how the drug entered his system. Here is part of  what he had to say:

"“I serve as a role model for many kids in my home country who dream of playing at the highest level. I would never put baseball, my family, or my country in a position where its integrity is jeopardized. I preach hard work, and don’t believe in short cuts. I am very disappointed that I tested positive for a performance enhancing drug. I am frustrated that I can’t pinpoint how the substance in question entered my body. I would never knowingly take anything illegal to enhance my performance. What I can guarantee is I never knowingly took anything illegal to enhance my performance. That’s just not me, never has been and never will.”"

I have two takes on all of this. First off, it’s unfortunate that the small chance the Twins had to compete this year probably just evaporated. Losing a top-3 starter is a blow that can’t be understated. Santana will likely miss 15-20 starts in his 80 game suspension. The Twins don’t exactly have an overflow of talented pitchers to give those starts.

And second, come on Ervin Santana.

As an athlete, you have a clear obligation to make sure your body stays clean. Especially after the Twins just handed you 54 million dollars.

You can say you don’t know how Stanozolol entered your bloodstream, but you’re still admitting ignorance. That ignorance is going to cost the Twins quite a bit this year.

Next: How Long Until Sano Becomes 3rd Baseman of the Future?

Mar 13, 2015; Bradenton, FL, USA; Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Ervin Santana (54) pitches during the second inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at McKechnie Field. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports