Reinstate J.C. Romero
The Office of the Commisioner of Major League Baseball
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Philadelphia Phillies pitcher J.C. Romero was suspended 50 games for violating Major League Baseball's drug policy after taking an over-the-counter supplement. Prior to taking the supplement, Romero asked his trainer, his nutrionist, and the MLB Player's Association, to review it to ensure that it did not violate the league's drug policy. Both his trainer and the MLBPA gave their approval because none of the ingredients listed on the container were on MLB's banned substance list. Despite these facts, one of the substances caused Romero to fail two drug tests. Once he was notified that he had failed to subsequent tests, Romero immediately stopped taking all of his supplements, as he was at that time unsure of what triggered his testing positive for a banned substance. Despite believing that he was acting within the league's rules, Major League Baseball has been suspended for 50 games and will lose about $1.25 million in salary, as well as being prohibited from participating in the World Baseball Classic in March.
Major League Baseball has readily admitted that Romero is not guilty of any cheating, but rather he is guilty of negligence for not knowing that the supplement contained a banned substance. Romero readily admits to taking the supplement, and is steadfast in his belief that he is innoccent.
Commissioner Bud Selig had the opportunity to step in and correct this flaw in his drug policy but instead opted to turn a blind eye and give Romero a full 50 game suspension.
This isn't just about J.C. Romero or the Philadelphia Phillies. Any professional baseball player could be test positive for using an over-the-counter supplement, even when it contains no banned substances.
It's time to let Commissioner Selig know that although he accepts the flaws in his drug policy, the fans of Major League Baseball find it unacceptable.