Thurm: On Michael Weiner’s ‘potential game-changer’ in BioGenesis case

From SABR member Wendy Thurm at FanGraphs on July 16, 2013:

Major League Baseball Players’ Association chief Michael Weiner held his annual All-Star Game press conference this morning. That is news in and of itself, in light of Weiner’s battle with brain cancer that has now sidelined him to a wheelchair. But even in his weakening condition, Weiner made news on the Biogenesis front.


Why is this big news? Because the plain language of the Joint Drug Policy says that a player who violates the policy by use or possession of a performance enhancing substance is subject to the same discipline as a player who tests positive. As I explained in the post MLB and Biogenesis: A Primer, Section 7.A of the Joint Drug Policy states:

A player who tests positive for a Performance Enhancing Substance, or otherwise violates the Program through the possession or use of a Performance Enhancing Substance, will be subject to the discipline set forth below. (emphasis mine) 1. First violation: 50-game suspension; 2. Second violation: 100-game suspension; 3. Third violation: Permanent suspension from Major League and Minor League Baseball.

Weiner, with Bill Shakin’s clarification, appeared to say that if the Biogenesis investigation turns up evidence of a player’s use or possession, the league would proceed under the “just cause” provisions of the Joint Drug Policy and the Collective Bargaining Agreement. I explained those provisions, as well, in the Primer post and further in last week’s post entitled “Is Selig Preparing To Use The Nuclear Option?” Essentially, the just cause provisions give the commissioner the power to discipline a player if he acts against the best interests of baseball.

Read the full article here:

Originally published: July 17, 2013. Last Updated: July 17, 2013.