NEW YORK -- Jenrry Mejia is no longer banned for life from Major League Baseball. His appeal for reinstatement from permanent suspension under Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program was approved on Friday, and the New York Mets pitcher is now cleared to resume participation in non-public
NEW YORK -- Jenrry Mejia is no longer banned for life from Major League Baseball. His appeal for reinstatement from permanent suspension under Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program was approved on Friday, and the New York Mets pitcher is now cleared to resume participation in non-public workouts at Mets facilities following the 2018 All-Star break.
Commissioner Rob Manfred released a statement regarding Mejia's reinstatement:
"Under the terms of our collectively bargained Joint Drug Program, a permanently suspended player like Mr. Mejia has the right to apply to me for discretionary reinstatement after serving a minimum of two years. Upon receiving Mr. Mejia's application for reinstatement last year, I invited him to New York to meet with me. During our meeting, Mr. Mejia expressed regret for poor choices he made in the past and assured me that, if reinstated, he would adhere to the terms of the Program going forward. In light of Mr. Mejia's contrition, his commitment to comply with the Program in the future, and the fact that he will have already spent almost four consecutive years suspended without pay, I have decided to grant Mr. Mejia a final chance to resume his professional career."
Mejia was serving a life-time suspension from Major League Baseball because he was the first player to violate the league's performance-enhancing drug policy three different times. The original suspension was for 80 games in April 2015 because he tested positive for stanozolol. Then he was suspended for a full season in July '15 after testing positive again for stanozolol and a second drug called boldenone.
Per the terms of the drug policy a player who tests positive on three different occasions will receive a "permanent suspension" from Major League Baseball. After one year of the suspension the player can apply to the commissioner for discretionary reinstatement which would begin two years after the suspension. Mejia received the suspension on February 12, 2016, which made him eligible to apply at the beginning of '18.
"I've had a long, difficult time away from the game to contemplate the mistakes I've made both with regard to my positive drug tests and also the false allegations I made about Major League Baseball's investigation into my testing history," Mejia said. "Baseball is my profession, my passion and my life, and for those mistakes, I am truly sorry."
The Mets organization will make the proper adjustments in the upcoming months regarding Mejia's situation. Mets manager Mickey Callaway noted that he is more focused on who they have in the big leagues right now, moving forward. The organization released the following statement on Friday:
"Jenrry Mejia has abided by the terms set forth by Commissioner Manfred and we appreciate his regret and renewed commitment to comply moving forward. We will evaluate his progress on the field and assess the situation and our options in the coming months."
Mejia has not pitched in a game since July 2015. He owns a career ERA of 3.68.
"I have much work ahead but look forward to earning back the trust and respect of the New York Mets, the fans and especially my teammates," Mejia stated.
Erin Fish is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York.