Obviously, getting banned from baseball for drug use is a serious issue. I believe every player deserves a fair hearing to defend themselves when accused of drug use.
On the other hand, players who do not have a problem with drug use still need to be aware of these issues in case your next argument is similar to Jenry Mejia’s claim.
If you recall, former Mets player Jenry Mejia stated MLB conspired to set him up after his third positive PED test resulted in becoming permanently banned.
Of course, drug testing and baseball have a long history. One of the most notable cases of a player being banned from baseball included the testing of player Steve Howe. History aside, theses rules are significant.
Thus, here is a brief outline to avoid a conspiracy.
MLB Drug Testing Rules
Your first test will be easy unless you fear failure. You can make drug testing very easy on yourself by utilizing these two rules:
- Always seek written consent for non-food supplements, and
- Assume your drug test is later today.
I agree, MLB drug testing guidelines are not exclusive to PEDs. Because your contract mandates compliance and your goal is reaching the very top, play it smart and use these rules to your advantage.
And yes, these rules impact MiLB players and those playing for an independent club too.
Conspiracy argument after being banded from baseball
Without evidence, claiming a conspiracy is always a losing argument. If a drug test inspires anxiety, here are a handful of points to avoid a conspiracy:
- Near the same date and time as your drug test, engage a confidential analysis from a third party,
- When available, immediately seek test results from the entity performing the drug test on behalf of your Club, and
- Consider whether asking for help in a treatment facility can reduce the impact of a suspension.
Yes, it can be very expensive seeking or acquiring a second or third opinion from an independent drug testing lab. Those who utilize the rules referenced above generally have little problems.
On the other hand, players who are in the gray or suffer from anxiety might benefit from utilizing outside resources to clam their nerves. Certainly seeking a third party for help is not an admittance of guilt. But, the test results might be admissible during a grievance hearing.
Although this comes down to a player’s personal preference, the idea is helping players avoid “conspiracies” or “they set me up” kind of stuff.
Banned from baseball for not expecting the following
Outside of baseball, the rules for drug testing are going to be different in every state. In addition to state specific drug testing laws, a union (like the MLBPA) can negotiate with an employer (like MLB) and agree to additional rules.
Generally, there five (5) ways an employer can engage a drug test:
- Pre-draft / Contract offers,
- Routine physical exams (your spring exam and season ending exit exam),
- Random testing (which likely instigated Jenry Mejia becoming banned from baseball),
- Reasonable suspicion a player is using drugs (like coming to the ballpark hungover), and
- Testing as a result of a treatment program.
Yes, these rules impact MiLB players and those playing for an independent club too.
Reduce risk of becoming banned from baseball
I desperately believe every player at every level should be aware of the rules that impact their careers and teammates.
Therefore, please contact me if you need help.