Some results of drug tests conducted during the 2009 World Baseball Classic have been released and it turns out The Aruban Nightmare, aka Sidney Ponson tested positive for a banned stimulant. Currently on the DL for Omaha Royals, Ponson is banned from international competition for two years, but if you can name a single international tournament he’d have competed in during that time, you’re a bigger baseball fan than me. Royals GM Dayton Moore describes the offending substance as “a diet pill”, so perhaps Ponson is entitled to a refund on top of the time off.
Cubs receiver Geovany Soto — he of the game-winning, 3-run HR in this afternoon’s 5-4 defeat of the host White Sox — is said to have tested positive for marijuana during the WBC. Manager Lou Piniella quickly spoke in support of his catcher, telling ESPN Chicago, “A lot of people (smoke marijuana). You can even buy it in California from a pharmacy.” Would it be so difficult for Lou to provide this pharmacy’s name and address?
“Look, I have smoked dope one time in my life,” Piniella said before the Cubs faced the Chicago White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field. “And it didn’t do a damn thing for me, and I never tried it again. I’m fortunate because of that.
Piniella believes the weight of knowing that revelation would come out affected Soto, who is the reigning National League rookie of the year and has struggled this season.
“I wasn’t aware of this until three or four days ago, and if I had been aware of it, truthfully, I would have encouraged Geo to speak about this much sooner to get it off his chest,” Piniella said. “I think it’s really had a negative effect on his performance.
“It was supposed to come out a few times and they delayed it, and I don’t think it’s done any good. I would have encouraged the player to come out and say this is what’s going to come out, this is what’s happened, I’m embarrassed about it and it’s not going to happen again. I’m done with it. Basically, that would have been the best approach, as far as I’m concerned.”
Not to mock the skipper but what’s up with these people who say they’ve tried a drug once and never again? Isn’t it pretty common knowledge you can’t really get a full grasp of a drug’s capabilities until you’ve used it fairly consistently for a few weeks, if not months? And is it really too late for Lou to give weed another try? Surely watching Carlos Marmol pitch is grounds for a medical exemption.