MLB superstar Fernando Tatis was suspended 80 games on Friday after he tested positive for Clostebol.
Tatis will not appeal the suspension. However, he maintains that he took the drug by mistake.
“It turns out that I inadvertently took a medication to treat ringworm that contained Clostebol,” Tatis said in a statement. “I should have used the resources available to me in order to ensure that no banned substances were in what I took. I failed to do so.”
“I am completely devastated,” Tatis continued. “There is nowhere else in the world I would rather be than on the field competing with my teammates.”
“After initially appealing the suspension, I have realized that my mistake was the cause of this result, and for that reason I have decided to start serving my suspension immediately. I look forward to rejoining my teammates on the field in 2023,” he concluded.
Clostebol is an anabolic steroid with use cases that are not performance-enhancing. However, it is banned by both the World Anti-Doping Agency and Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.
The suspension ensures that Tatis will not play a single game for the Padres this year. It includes 44 more regular season games this season, and will extend into the playoffs should the Padres make it there. Tatis will serve the remainder of his suspension at the start of the 2023 regular season.
This is the second incident this year to call Tatis’s maturity into question. The first occurred this past offseason, when he injured his wrist riding a motorcycle in his native Dominican Republic. Those miscues are particularly frustrating for the Padres given that Tatis is in the second year of a 14 year, $340 million contract.
“He’s somebody that from the organization’s standpoint we’ve invested time and money into,” Padres GM AJ Preller told the media. “When he’s on the field, he’s a difference-maker. You have to learn from the situations. We were hoping that from the offseason to now that there would be some maturity, and obviously with the news today, it’s more of a pattern and it’s something that we’ve got to dig a bit more into. … I’m sure he’s very disappointed. But at the end of the day, it’s one thing to say it. You’ve got to start showing by your actions.”
It’s a huge blow for the Padres, who currently sit in the third NL Wild Card slot. They made huge moves at the trade deadline by acquiring superstar Juan Soto and power-hitting first baseman Josh Bell from the Nationals. With those two added to the line-up, and Tatis set to return, the Padres were ready to make a playoff run.
Tatis’s suspension throws a wrench into that plan.