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Dodgers' Urias suspended for 20 games

@kengurnick
August 17, 2019

ATLANTA -- Dodgers left-hander Julio Urías has accepted a 20-game suspension under MLB’s Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Policy, Commissioner Rob Manfred announced on Saturday. The unpaid suspension of Urias will include five games served while he was on administrative leave from May 14-21, leaving 15 games

ATLANTA -- Dodgers left-hander Julio Urías has accepted a 20-game suspension under MLB’s Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Policy, Commissioner Rob Manfred announced on Saturday.

The unpaid suspension of Urias will include five games served while he was on administrative leave from May 14-21, leaving 15 games remaining to be served. Urias will train at the club’s Camelback Ranch complex in Arizona and begin a rehab assignment on Aug. 27.

“When it’s over,” said club president and CEO Stan Kasten, “we expect him to come back.”

Urias has agreed not to appeal the discipline and as a result will be eligible to return on Sept. 2 against the Rockies and will be eligible for postseason play. Urias will participate in a confidential and comprehensive evaluation and treatment program supervised by the Joint Policy Board.

The club’s primary left-handed reliever, Urias is 4-3 with a 2.53 ERA in 27 appearances, which includes six starts and four saves.

The Dodgers recalled reliever Casey Sadler to take Urias’ spot on the 25-man roster.

Commissioner Manfred issued the following statement regarding the discipline:

“My office has completed its investigation into the allegations that Julio Urias violated Major League Baseball’s Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Policy. Mr. Urias cooperated fully with my office’s investigation. Having reviewed all of the available evidence, I have concluded that Mr. Urias violated our Policy and that discipline is appropriate.”

Urias was arrested on May 13 for investigation of possible misdemeanor domestic battery after an altercation in the parking lot of the Beverly Center shopping center. Prosecutors did not file charges, with Urias complying with terms that included counseling and no further incidents.

The Major League Baseball Players Association released this statement on Urias’ behalf:

“Today I accepted a suspension from Major League Baseball and agreed not to exercise my right to appeal. It is important to me not to create uncertainty for my teammates as we approach the playoffs. Accepting the suspension is the best path to achieve that goal.

“Since May, I have been fully cooperating with both law enforcement and MLB. Although the authorities determined no charges of any kind were warranted, I accept full responsibility for what I believe was my inappropriate conduct during the incident. Even in this instance where there was no injury or history of violence, I understand and agree that Major League players should be held to a higher standard. I hold myself to a higher standard as well. I have taken proactive steps to help grow as a person on and off the field, and in my relationships, including attending counseling sessions.

“I am deeply grateful for all the support I’ve received during this challenging time. I look forward to proving it is well deserved.”

Kasten and Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman, in Atlanta with the club, said they were unaware the MLB investigation was still active until notified in the past few days.

Kasten said the club was disappointed in the actions by Urias that led to the suspension, but was comfortable with the process and accepted the conclusion as appropriate. He said no explanation was given to the club beyond the official announcement.

Despite the gravity of the situation, Kasten said the Dodgers stand by Urias.

“We take this very seriously,” Kasten said. “In the last couple of years, we’ve had a lot of training in camp about these kinds of matters. That’s why we’re comfortable with the program.

“At the same time, we support Julio’s effort to learn from this. Doc and Andrew and I met with Julio after [Friday night’s] game. He said all the right things to us. I believe he said it with great sincerity. He understands the gravity of things like this. He’s going to work hard to move forward. We hope so and if that’s how he feels, we will do everything to support him as I think anyone would expect us to.

“Major League Baseball and the union are working together to root things like this out. Today was a step that had to be taken. I think continuing education is a really important part of what the program is. Not just to understand the rules, but how to conduct yourself in general.”

Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.