Baseball Is Adding All-Star Bans and More Tests to Drug Rules
Major League Baseball and its players agreed to ban drug violators from the All-Star Game and add random doping tests.
The two sides said in a joint news release that they also agreed to study expanding human growth hormone testing to the regular season. The labor contract adopted in November for the first time added HGH testing at the sport’s top level during spring training and the offseason.
“These modifications to expand upon the comprehensive nature of our program are consistent with our efforts to ensure we are running the highest quality drug testing in professional sports,” Rob Manfred, baseball’s executive vice president for economics and league affairs, said in a statement.
In addition, they said they would create a panel to advise drug program administrators on when medications intended to treat attention deficit disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder should be allowed. The misuse of such drugs is a growing concern in the sport, according to the two sides.
The revisions reflect changes to the original agreement, the results of a 2011 year-end review and other modifications made following an arbitration panel’s ruling that overturned a 50-game ban for reigning National League Most Valuable Player Ryan Braun.
Braun, who tested positive for a banned substance last year, was the first player to win such an appeal. Procedures for when specimens must be delivered to couriers -- the basis of Braun’s appeal -- have been modified.
Players who violate baseball’s drug rules during the offseason, spring training or prior to the All-Star break will be ineligible for the July All-Star Game. The new rules also will allow baseball to reveal exactly which drug caused a player’s positive test.
“Today’s announcement reflects one of the greatest strengths of the program -- its ability to be improved through the collective bargaining process,” Michael Weiner, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, said in a statement.
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