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Legends On Deck

Angels’ Hamilton Won’t Face Suspension

Josh Hamilton has been saved again and hopefully this time he will take full advantage of his good fortunes.

An arbitrator has ruled that the drug test that he failed during Super Bowl weekend will not cause him to be suspended for any amount of time.

Major League Baseball and the Players Association could not come to an agreement on Hamilton’s cocaine use that should result in a suspension, so an independent arbitrator was asked to make a decision and it was noted that Hamilton’s actions did not violate his treatment program and could not be suspended by Major League Baseball nor could they discipline him.

The outfielder is currently rehabbing his right shoulder after having surgery and is not expect back on the field until at least May.

MLB’s released statement on the matter:

The issue of whether Josh Hamilton violated his treatment program was submitted to the Treatment Board established under Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. The MLB representatives and the Players Association representatives on the Treatment Board deadlocked on that issue, with MLB taking the position that Hamilton violated his treatment program and is subject to discipline by the Commissioner. Under the procedures of the Program, an outside arbitrator was appointed to break the tie, and the arbitrator ruled that Josh Hamilton’s conduct did not violate his treatment program. As a result of that decision, the Office of the Commissioner is not permitted to suspend or impose any discipline on Hamilton. The Office of the Commissioner disagrees with the decision, and will seek to address deficiencies in the manner in which drugs of abuse are addressed under the Program in the collective bargaining process.

Angels GM Jerry DiPoto released a statement:

The Office of the Commissioner informed the Angels that an arbitrator determined Josh Hamilton’s recent conduct did not violate his treatment program under MLB’s Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, and therefore the Commissioner is not permitted to suspend or otherwise discipline Hamilton. The Club had no involvement in the proceeding or the ruling.

The Angels have serious concerns about Josh’s conduct, health and behavior and we are disappointed that he has broken an important commitment which he made to himself, his family, his teammates and our fans. We are going to do everything possible to assure he receives proper help for himself and for the well-being of his family.

Hamilton doesn’t look to be out of the woods even though he won’t be suspended from the game. He will still need to gain the confidence of his teammates and fans once again.

(Photo Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)


David Conde

Co-Founder/Executive Editor at Legends On Deck®
David is the Founder and Executive Editor of Legends On Deck®. He was a Senior Editor for MetsMerizedOnline, MetsMinors.net and Contributor for Hardballchat.com. David's idea forLegends on Deck is to be a site where passionate fans of the game have a place to read about their favorite baseball teams. The site is also for people who had a talent to write or even take photographs and have the platform to share. The passion of following the Minor Leagues can be seen all over the site as the players journey's are what what drives the LOD team to share their content. David's passion is making available a site that people can have fun sharing and reading.

You can also reach out to David at daconde@legendsondeck.com
David Conde