For the first time under Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Agreement, a player has been nailed for PEDs three times. It's former Mets closer Jenrry Mejia and the rule for a third violation is a steep one. He has received a permanent ban from MLB.
Mejia is only 26 years old and was the closer of the Mets for most of the 2014 season, when he went 28 for 31 in save chances with a 3.65 ERA, 1.48 WHIP and 98 strikeouts in 93 2/3 innings. If we used his stat line as a reliever only, however, his ERA was 2.72.
Regardless, it hardly matters now. Mejia's career is over. He was suspended for the second time while serving his first PED-related suspension and now he has been nailed a third time while still serving his second suspension.
Here are four things to know:
1. This amazingly went down in less than a calendar year.
It was in early April 2015 when Mejia received his first suspension of 80 games for testing positive for stanozolol (an anabolic steroid). On July 28, he again tested positive for stanozolol, this time along with Boldenone (also an anabolic steroid). A second positive test is a full season ban, so he was set to sit out this season until late July. Only he was caught once again -- this time MLB announced that it was only for Boldenone -- and is now done for life.
2. Mejia could apply for reinstatement
He technically can apply for reinstatement after a year, but it's hard to see any chance for success on that front. He's the first one and, again, he did all three in less than a year. Still, there's always the chance he is reinstated, in which case he would need to serve another year suspension. So he's done for a minimum of two years. My bet is on permanent, though.
3. Mejia cost himself a lot of money
Players don't earn salaries while suspended, so Mejia lost out on most of his $2.595 million salary last season. He was set to make $2.47 million this year. Before 2015, Mejia only banked roughly $1.13 million.
4. This shouldn't harm the Mets much
The Mets won the NL East and went to the World Series without Mejia last season, so there's the evidence they didn't need him. They did have to trade for late-inning relief help along the way, but this time around they are set with closer Jeurys Familia, setup righty Addison Reed and setup lefty Antonio Bastardo.