The Mariners received an unfortunate bit of news today with the announcement that Tim Beckham will be suspended 80 games without pay due to violation of the MLB Performance Enhancing Drugs policy.
Mariners utility man Tim Beckham has been suspended 80 games without pay after testing positive for Stanozolol, a performance-enhancing substance, in violation of Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.— Greg Johns (@GregJohnsMLB) August 6, 2019
Both Beckham and the Mariners have made statements in response to the announcement.
The Major League Baseball Players Association is releasing the following statement on behalf of Tim Beckham: pic.twitter.com/lOVBtgkTgC— MLBPA Communications (@MLBPA_News) August 6, 2019
Mariners statement on Tim Beckham suspension: pic.twitter.com/dLg2Qhk4FG— Greg Johns (@GregJohnsMLB) August 6, 2019
Beckham was a breakout star in the first month of the season, but even as he returned to earth he’d put together a respectable bench role. After an injury-hampered 2018, the 29-year-old was pushing towards a reasonable season, with league-average offense and... adventurous defense at every infield position and a little dash of left field. Sadly, Stanozolol is about as no-joke as you get with PED suspensions in baseball. Beckham had one more year of arbitration eligibility before free agency, so Seattle could have brought him back if they so chose this offseason, or attempted to deal him to a competitor for a minimal but non-zero return. Instead, this makes a non-tender fairly likely.
For immediate roster ramifications, the M’s have a couple choices. Most likely, Dee Gordon will be recalled, as he is eligible to return from the 10-day IL, but if the team would like to see Dee get some rehab work they can go to Tim Lopes, who went 2-for-5 with a double last night in his fourth rehab appearance since a scary HBP to the jaw ended his first MLB start prematurely. One of the two should be up in Seattle tonight to face the Padres.
Update, 2:31 PM:
#Mariners reinstate RHP Brandon Brennan from the 10-day Injured List and reinstate INF Tim Lopes from the 7-day Concussion List. RHP Gerson Bautista has been optioned to AAA Tacoma.— MarinersPR (@MarinersPR) August 6, 2019
Read: https://t.co/2soaNTQ6AG pic.twitter.com/jBtjTea3vq
Lopes picked right up where he left off for Tacoma, with five hits in four games for the Rainiers; it’s nice to see him get another shot. It’s also good to see Brandon Brennan back from his lengthy rehab and looking like he’s back to form.
Good to see Brandon Brennan back at it: pic.twitter.com/HBU3Twn191— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) August 2, 2019
With Hunter Strickland and Roenis Elias traded to the other, worse Washington, BB-2 will immediately become the best option in the bullpen and the likely closer. Gerson Bautista and his wanton command will head back to Tacoma to make space. The Mariners also announced that David McKay was claimed off waivers, which is kind of a bummer for a guy who was a fun development story, although the results weren’t quite there for McKay in a brief taste of MLB action this year. We’ll see what the [checks notes] uh, 2019 Detroit Tigers can do with him.