Jeff Passan of Yahoo is reporting that three Tampa Bay Rays minor leaguers have been suspended for meth usage. The three players are Ryan Brett, Charles Cononie, and Justin Woodall, all of whom play for the Bowling Green Hot Rods of the low-A Midwest League.
None of the suspended trio is a top prospect, though Brett was a third round pick by the Rays in the 2010 draft and the best of the three.. The suspensions are the first I can immediately think of for meth use, which is in a wholly different category among the public consciousness in comparison to marijuana (which is what Rays prospect Tim Beckham was nailed for back in May).
The 20-year old Brett had a .741 OPS in 100 games, and has 48 stolen bases on the season. The 24-year old Woodall has a 4.76 ERA in 30 games this year, with all but one coming as a reliever. The 23-year old Cononie, another reliever, has a 4.20 ERA in 34 games.
I think it's kind of funny that fans and mainstream writers vilify players for steroid use, yet these suspensions for meth (a much more harmful drug than testosterone or another anabolic steroid) will probably just end up flying under the radar. That's not a very good mark on the culture of baseball, is it? Meth is classified as a "drug of abuse", which will result in 50 game suspensions for all three players. Hmmm….meth, testosterone, and weed all resulting in the same suspension. That really doesn't seem right.