Maddon, Rays comment on PED suspensions
PHOENIX -- Rays players and manager Joe Maddon offered their opinions regarding Monday's impactful news in Major League Baseball.
MLB on Monday suspended 13 players as a result of the league's Biogenesis investigation. Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez received the stiffest penalty -- a 211-game ban without pay through the end of the 2014 regular season. Rodriguez, 38, has appealed the suspension, which is to begin Thursday. His case will be heard by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz. Rodriguez's discipline, MLB said in its written announcement, is based on his use and possession of numerous forms of prohibited performance-enhancing substances, including testosterone and human growth hormone, over the course of multiple years. Rodriguez's discipline under the basic agreement is for attempting to cover up his violations of the program by engaging in a course of conduct intended to "obstruct and frustrate" the investigation.
The other players who were handed 50-game suspensions include Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz, Tigers shortstop Jhonny Peralta, Mariners catcher Jesus Montero, Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera, Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli, Phillies reliever Antonio Bastardo and recently demoted Mets utilityman Jordany Valdespin. Minor Leaguers Fernando Martinez, Jordan Norberto, Fautino de los Santos, Cesar Puello and Sergio Escalona also were suspended.
"My reaction [to the news] is probably just a lot like everybody here in this clubhouse and around the league," said Matt Moore, who is the Rays' players representative. "We've been hearing about it for so long, so to finally have guys that did break the rules paying the price and not contributing to a team in a positive way, I think is going to help out. It's just unfortunate. It's something that you really think that it would be tough for those guys to look at themselves in the mirror and face what they face every day. But somehow they find a way to do it."
Moore said the news brought some peace of mind, but he added: "At the same time I don't like turning on the TV right now. I don't like watching all this stuff. ... Right now it's not fun to watch the highlights and things like that. You're seeing a lot of the cloud that's still covering it."
Chris Archer said the "only thing I can say is, let's drop it."
"Let's move on," Archer said. "If somebody has a bad outing, you talk about it for that day. The next day is a new day. Justice has been served. Let's move on. Let's not give it life anymore. And then I think the game will continue to prosper and that won't exist anymore if we don't give it life."
Maddon noted that overall he believed everyone is pleased that action has been taken.
"We're definitely moving in the right direction," Maddon said. "I want to believe that it's going to pretty much be the beginning of the end of all this stuff. It's hard to believe that guys would want to challenge these rules. ... I do believe that the residue of this is going to be even more severe penalties, which I think is appropriate."