Tim Beckham suspended 80 games for PEDs

August 7th, 2019

SEATTLE -- , who has evolved into a utility player in his first year with the Mariners, was suspended without pay for 80 games by Major League Baseball on Tuesday after testing positive for Stanozolol, a performance-enhancing substance, in violation of Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.

Stanozolol is an anabolic steroid. The suspension is effective immediately, which means Beckham’s season is done, as Seattle has just 48 games remaining.

The 29-year-old Beckham opened the season as Seattle’s starting shortstop but has lately been helping out a short-handed outfield by playing left field.

“It’s disappointing when stuff like that happens,” manager Scott Servais said. “But we go on. The game does not stop. It doesn’t stop for anybody. It creates some opportunities for some guys to get some at-bats out there.”

Servais said utility man Dylan Moore will see more time left field now and infielder Tim Lopes -- who came off the 7-day concussion list Tuesday -- will be given a shot in left field as well.

Beckham is the second Mariners Major Leaguer to be suspended in the past two years. Robinson Cano received an 80-game suspension in May 2018 after testing positive for furosemide, a diuretic better known as Lasix, which is often used to help mask banned substances in urine tests.

Beckham denied knowingly taking the substance through a statement from the MLB Players Association:

"I was recently notified that I had tested positive for Stanozolol, a prohibited substance under MLB's Joint Drug Agreement. I was given a product from a trusted source, who had advised me that it was safe to take.

"Regrettably, the product was tainted. I exercised my rights under the Joint Drug Agreement, and presented my case to an independent arbitrator. While I am disappointed in the result, I respect the ruling and understand my responsibilities under the Joint Drug Agreement.

"I accept full responsibility for putting myself in this position. I sincerely apologize to the Mariners' organization, the fans, my teammates, and my family for this mistake. I look forward to resuming my career once my suspension has been served."

The Mariners issued the following statement:

"The Seattle Mariners are disappointed that Tim Beckham has violated the terms of Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. Our organization fully supports the Program and its efforts to eliminate performance-enhancing substances from our game.

"Per the Basic Agreement, the Mariners will have no further comment."

Beckham has posted a .237/.293/.461 slash line with 15 home runs and 47 RBIs in 88 games. He got off to a hot start at the plate and was the American League Player of the Week for the opening week of the season, but he struggled defensively at shortstop and was replaced there in mid-May by J.P. Crawford.

Beckham, the first overall pick in the 2008 Draft by the Rays, signed a one-year, $1.75 million deal with the Mariners in January. He potentially remains under Seattle’s team control for another year, as he’s arbitration eligible for 2020 before becoming a free agent the following season.

In six Major League seasons, the Georgia native has hit .249/.302/.431 with 63 home runs and 198 RBIs while playing for the Rays, Orioles and Mariners.