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Wednesday, December 04, 2019

Testing, no suspensions for opioids considered likely in MLB

MIAMI (AP) — Players who test positive for opioids would enter treatment and not be suspended under the change to Major League Baseball’s drug agreement being negotiated by management and the players’ association, according to union head Tony Clark.

Talks to add testing for opioids began following the death this year of Los Angeles Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs. Players have been tested for performance-enhancing substances since 2004 and for banned stimulants since 2006.

“We believe wholeheartedly, as we always have, that the treatment option and not discipline is the best route to go,” Clark said Wednesday as the union’s executive board finished its annual meeting.

The union and MLB are in agreement that treatment would be warranted for opioids and not discipline, Clark said. He added the addition to the drug agreement likely be made this offseason.


QLE Posted: December 04, 2019 at 10:28 PM | 11 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: drug testing, opioids

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   1. Bote Man Posted: December 06, 2019 at 12:08 AM (#5906148)
What if (hear me out on this) the opioids *ARE* the treatment, at least as far as the player is concerned??
   2. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: December 06, 2019 at 12:42 AM (#5906150)
Then the player is putting himself in a dangerous situation, and trying to help him deal with the pain (or whatever else) in a healthier way would seem to be a good idea, no?
   3. Bote Man Posted: December 06, 2019 at 02:00 AM (#5906154)
That's the problem with the legal system entering the discussion. If it were simply a matter of finding the best way to deal with the pain, I'd bet the players would willingly consult the team doctor. BUT when The Man is standing there brandishing his billy club just a-waitin to beat the player upside the head for daring to seek pain relief, you can understand why they are reluctant to go through the red tape. I mean, you need special dispensation just to take an aspirin any more.

There is also the feeling of invincibility due to youth and the prospect (or reality) of making big bucks in the Bigs clouding judgment.

Anyway, post #1 was tongue-in-cheek, but I see the owners as all too willing to play the bad cop in this scenario, regardless of the hopeful tone of the linked article.
   4. Cris E Posted: December 06, 2019 at 10:32 AM (#5906204)
What if, and part of me just says quit trying to stir 'em all up, but WTH, what if you talk to the team doc and get a prescription for what you need to control pain? There are specialists and clinics and non-street drugs out there that can easily qualify you for a script that would avoid this whole mess. The league and union would be best served by putting a straight up pain mgmt policy in place where best practices are shared and confidential registration occurs for protocols would get them out of trouble is their pee comes back glowing blue.
   5. Bote Man Posted: December 06, 2019 at 12:26 PM (#5906271)
I'm thinking in much broader terms than this one issue. Anecdotal evidence strongly suggests that ganja is quite popular for its palliative effects, among others, yet its legal status prevents doctors from prescribing it; being listed on Schedule 1 prevents labs in the U.S. from testing it to determine its effects in a deterministic way. So the entire policy structure warps the incentives.

Then there are fly-by-night "pain clinics" that sell opioids under the guise of legitimacy, so even the appeal to medical authority fails there.

I suspect teams are mostly interested in reducing liability and couldn't give a rat's a$$ about player health beyond what they can extract from them on the field. History shows that teams will take the conservative path and not think outside the box here.
   6. Sunday silence Posted: December 06, 2019 at 04:50 PM (#5906369)
Is this really a departure from the official policy toward non PED abusers? On the redddit site they are saying that its the same policy as before.
   7. Bote Man Posted: December 06, 2019 at 05:41 PM (#5906384)
Opioids are hardly performance enhancers. Quite the contrary, in fact.
   8. Sunday silence Posted: December 06, 2019 at 06:28 PM (#5906398)
I know that. What makes you think I think they are?
   9. Bote Man Posted: December 07, 2019 at 02:31 AM (#5906477)
Sorry, I misread that by not seeing the "non" in front of PED. Either too little or too much coffee at the time :-)
   10. Bote Man Posted: December 09, 2019 at 09:40 PM (#5907323)
They read this site:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal
As part of a new agreement on opioids being negotiated between Major League Baseball and the players’ union, MLB will remove marijuana from the list of banned substances for minor leaguers, sources tell The Athletic. Major Leaguers have not been subject to testing for marijuana.
   11. A triple short of the cycle Posted: December 09, 2019 at 11:04 PM (#5907341)
What does it mean to enter treatment for opioids? The player would leave the team and go to Shady Acres for a couple months?

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